Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Still Giddy

Finally! I am so happy to be able to write this post. She sent me 68 pictures....68! Not many people were happier than I was when I saw them. She included pictures from Christmas, playing in the snow, and even a couple of her bedroom, which I hadn't seen since last year. At that time, it was really just a crib, dresser, and changing table. Now it's filled with pink - pink photo frames on the walls, pink toys scattered all around the room, pink curtains and a pink canopy type thing over her crib. I wish it was my bedroom!!
I called her birthdad at 4 in the morning when I read the email, but his phone was off. Didn't pay the bill! Oddly enough, he called me around 9 anyways and left a voice mail saying he hoped everything was okay and that he hoped she had emailed since the time I last spoke to him (Thursday). I called him back on my lunch, and he sounded so truly happy. It made me feel so good, and in a way, it made me feel proud. I'm not sure of what exactly, but I just had that feeling. He said that he was excited to see the photos, but what he was most happy about was the fact that I was happy. It was a good conversation and I came to the realization that getting 'over' him completely was the step I needed to take in order for us to have a relatively normal 'relationship.' We are now able to be friends - not "friends" friends, like my other friends are to me - but friends when we need to be. I did text him today to wish him a Happy Birthday. But enough about him!!
She looks like she is about three years old. She is so tall. Oh, and I forgot - she got her first haircut last month! Her first real haircut since we cut a few pieces of her hair at the hospital for me to keep with her baby stuff. I never thought I'd get to see photos of that, so those ones mean a lot to me. She will be starting pre pre-school in the summer (who even knew that existed? I didn't, hahaha), two days a week. Apparently, she is already a social butterfly anyways. Her adoptive mom said "She smiles at you and you feel like you have been blessed by an angel.   I can’t take her anywhere without her making friends with her smiles" which brought tears to my eyes! Her smile permeates the pictures, so I can only imagine.
She made sure to include pictures of her in the hat and jacket I sent her for Christmas, as well as the Dora shirt I sent and the pink shirt and pink tutu I sent her for Valentine's Day! Honestly, it made me feel guilty for ever doubting the fact that she would hold up her end of the communication agreement. And, in the photo of her bedroom, the bear I made her at build-a-bear was sitting on a shelf with some of her toys. There aren't any words for how that made me feel! She could have posed her for the pictures in the outfits, but you can tell that the teddy bear is an everyday object in her room.
I felt like I had a lot more to say, but my attention span is at a negative level at the moment. I will surely have more to say about it soon! For now, a couple photos that I just have to share. She is her (birth) father's twin!

And lastly, my favorite:

This is her reading the card I sent her for Christmas!

Monday, March 26, 2012

GOOD News!

She wrote back!!! Sent a lot of pictures and an amazing update! I can't even process all that she said in the update because (a) it's 4:08 am and (b) I am so over the moon at the simple fact that I got one, that I can't soak in what it says. I pray that this day at work flies by, because I plan to be planted in front of my laptop from 5:30 til whenever I go to sleep, looking at these. I was right - she has drastically changed, but she is the most beautiful little girl I've ever seen! I may be a bit biased. I couldn't go back to sleep without at least skimming the photos. Ahhhhh! I could cry. Happy tears this time! Now I'm going to go text her birthdad with the good news and try and get some sleep (laughable!) until my alarm goes off at 7.

Thank you all for your kind words during what was probably the second toughest thing I've gone through in regards to the adoption as a whole. You don't know how much it lifted my spirits, even just to know others had been there, or other adoptive moms agreed with my worries.

Good night (or morning)!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

I'm making up for my lack of posting...two in one day!

Just sent another email. I thought about calling, but that's something I haven't done since placement (emails, text, and Skype only so far), so I thought I would keep that as a "last resort." I said in the email that it was no longer a matter of my desire for photos and an update as much as it was a matter of concern at this point. Of course I can never get enough photos, and I can't even imagine how much she has changed in the past 3 - 4 months. A lot, I'm sure. I came right out and said that I am nervous and scared, and although I trust her and appreciate all she has does for me, I can't help but be very worried. So, even if I don't get pictures as soon as I'd like (which would be, oh, yesterday) I hope she can at least decipher my tone in the email and see that I am literally shaking with anxiety over this. I don't feel like this is "it," like they are closing the adoption...and I can tell from Facebook that they all seem to be okay, so I'm not worried about anything too serious going on...but I am letting this get the best of me, for sure. It's not healthy. At least if I knew that the adoption was closing, I could try to get my bearings all over again and start to learn new ways to cope with that. But that's not the case (I don't think, at least I hope not), so I'm sort of in limbo, going to bed every night with hope and waking up to see nothing. It's frustrating! Thank you to all of my friends (in person and in the blog world) who have put up with me for the past few months and supported me through this, as best as you know how. Even if it means just listening to me vent about it, or letting me cry over it in front of you. I hope it comes to an end soon, and then, I'll be back!

The past few months...

I figured I would write about some other things that have been going on in my life...rather than focusing on the missing update(s). Maybe it'll take my mind off of it for a few minutes. Some other considerably big things have been going on, too! I was hush hush about it at first, because I didn't know how it would unfold or where it would end up - such is life, right? - but now that I know the destination, I feel more comfortable talking about it.
Back in January, a friend convinced me, almost jokingly, to set up a profile on a dating site. I have nothing against online dating/meeting, especially since 9 out of 10 of my friends have met people that way. I'll never meet anyone out at a bar (I don't drink) nor will I meet anyone at work (I work with all females), but I was still more than apprehensive about it. It's been suggested to me before, so I could talk to another guy and he could serve as somewhat of a distraction for me. That's not fair to a guy, nor is it fair to me, so I always said I simply wasn't ready for a relationship or even another companionship. I honestly have enough trouble maintaining my inner relationship with myself right now, how could I maintain a relationship with someone else? Especially a romantic one? Anyways, one night at a friend's house and a homemade dinner later, we found ourselves on her computer, googling the best way for me to "find love." Hahaha. She was enthusiastic, I was still skeptical. Before even signing up, we did a search, and we saw someone who would be 'perfect' for me. (As perfect as you can conclude that a person is just from seeing their photo and their 50-character bio). I decided that I would sign up, if only to talk to him.
Fast forward a few days, he messaged me and we talked back and forth for a while and then he gave me his number and asked me if I'd like to text him instead. He was great - great personality, good sense of humor, just my kind of guy. He was 28, mature, had his degree, a good job, his own place, a nice car (if you know me, you know my passion for cars!), and a beautiful smile. And sleeves on both arms (can you say sexy?) We got along so well, and it felt like a friendship I had had for my entire life. He told me about his family, his past, his future, and he was truly on the same page as me as far as a relationship goes. It seems cliche to say you want to take things slow and develop a solid friendship first, but that was truly what I wanted and what he wanted as well. I was just testing the waters.
I've learned from a lot of friends who have tried online dating that a lot of men will jump right into talking about sex - when they're going to get it, how they're going to get it, and how quickly you're willing to do it with no commitment. That's not me at all. That's never been my frame of mind, especially not having been with one person - and being with that one person for over three years. A's birthdad is the only person I "know" in that way, and the only person that knows me. To say I was comfortable with him would be an understatement, and the thought of being intimate with someone else frankly scared the shit out of me. Anyways, towards the beginning of February, we finally met up and had dinner. We hung out a few more times after that, and always had a laugh and he made me feel really happy. He never brought up sex - the second time we hung out, he did kiss me goodbye, but didn't try anything else. He seemed to have a level of respect that I was honestly shocked by. He took my mind off of waiting for the pictures, because while I wasn't waking up to an email on my phone, at least I was waking up to a text message from him. (Which is in no way a replacement for the photos by any means, but at least I could balance the ups with the downs a little bit).
I told him about Arianna. He was shockingly comfortable with it and even asked to see pictures of her. I thought for sure he would clam up; not know what to say or how to handle me from that point on. He was absolutely fine, though. Emphatic, even. I eventually did sleep with him. I'm not one to broadcast things like that (I will talk details with close friends, what girl doesn't?) but it's important, because it's something that I could hardly see myself doing. I knew I would be with someone else eventually, but to actually physically do it, was scary. I thought I would be uncomfortable and spend the majority of the time thinking about someone else, comparing, contrasting, feeling bad - but I didn't.
I would be lying to you if I said I felt 'ready' to be in a relationship with someone at the moment, but I would also be lying to you if I told you that I would have said no if he asked. Whenever it was brought up, I sort of shied away from it, not knowing if I was ready to emotionally invest in another person. Things were fine the way they were, and we had only been talking for a month and a half or so, anyways, so I told myself to just enjoy what was happening and to enjoy the mental break from thinking about her birthdad.
So, fast forward to mid-march, when we had been talking for around 2 months and hanging out almost every weekend. The long and short of it is he asked me if he could borrow money because his phone was about to be turned off. That was a red flag for me right there - I know, I know that I have some residual trust issues. I gave him the benefit of the doubt, while still keeping my guard up with him, because I was lied to so much by A's birthdad that I started to assume everything that sounded bit off was a lie. People were guilty until proven innocent in my mind. Which is not fair to anyone, not even myself. But I need to learn to get past that and realize that he is not him. That's what I told myself to do, and I found a way to keep my guard up and still let myself care and be cared about. I was skeptical at first, and told him that I didn't have any money to lend him that week. (I did have the money, but I wasn't going to look like a fool and hand out the kind of money he was asking for). He told me later that day that his phone was going to be shut off. I was sad, and my mind instantly went to that 'bad place' and thought that this was his way of not talking to me anymore. The next morning, he texted me from another number and said that he had borrowed a family member's phone so he could talk to me. Aww, how sweet, how thoughtful - nope! I almost let myself think that, but didn't. Again, he asked for the money, again, I told him no and to stop being so pushy. I changed the topic of conversation, and we talked like we had been for the past couple months. All was fine, even though, in the back of my mind I was still pissed about the money. The next day, I get an email at work from him, saying he misses me and he had to give the phone back to his family member. Oh, how cute - he went as far as to email me. Too bad he didn't go as far as to delete the "sent from my iPhone" tag at the end of the email. He had an Android whenever I saw him - not an iPhone. I didn't want to jump down his throat - maybe he logged into his email from a friend's iPhone. I questioned it, and he eventually admitted that he wanted the money for an iPhone. Does he get points for admitting it? I suppose so. But he acted as if admitting it absolved him from trying to con me out of money in the first place. What kind of person does that? So I told him that I was done...reminded him that he knew how important trust was to me (we spoke about our past relationships) and that he had no problem breaking that trust before we were even in a relationship, just so he could get a new phone. He went as far as texting me from another number and emailing to convince me that his phone was off. The phone was never off. That's lower than low.
I do miss him, I miss talking to him, and other than that *pretty big* screw up on his part, he was a great guy. The kind of person I could see myself with. Oh well, I suppose. I did learn something valuable, though. I proved to myself that there is life after A's birthdad, that I can move on, and that I am capable of having feelings for someone else. It was the little push that I really needed. So, even though this guy ended up really getting under my skin with his phone story, I've gotta thank him for showing me that I can move on. And if there is one guy who can make me realize that, then there will be another, when the time is right. Right now, I am not looking for anyone. I made the profile with the intent of talking to this guy only, and it was perfect for a while, but now that it's over, so is my stint in the dating world for a while. In my heart, I really feel that even though I am capable of moving on, I'm still not fully ready in a way that would be fair to the guy. I'm too emotional right now, and wrapped up in the email issue. Once that passes (please God, let it pass), I think I will be back to myself again (for the most part).

Side note: as I was typing this, I took a break and went on Facebook, only to see that a-dad just posted a picture of some new stuff he must have gotten for work, and in the background there was a pink sippy-cup lying on the couch. I hate the fact that that is the closet thing to my daughter that I have seen in so long! Arghhhhhhhh. Maybe I will call her, or email once more today. She has given me so many platforms with which to talk to her - home address, email address, home & cell phone numbers, Facebook, and Skype. So I am not abusing my privileges or wearing out my welcome by utilizing 2 out of the 6 ways I have to get in touch with her. 

Saturday, March 24, 2012


I'm getting really scared. It's this immobilizing fear. I was looking through my email, and last year around this time, I received pictures on January 3rd, January 31st, February 13th, March 3rd, March 19th, April 5th, and April 19th (my birthday). Now I've gone from November 25 til ???.
Maybe I was spoiled by the 'first year' excitement and all of the photos of her adjusting and changing into a one-year-old. Maybe all of that contact led me on...led me to believe it would never waver, although I knew deep down that eventually it would. I never thought it would be like this, though. This silence truly is deafening.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

3rd, I wait

I sent another email last night. I don't know if that's being overbearing or pushy or what but it's the last one I'm going to send. I have waited almost 3 weeks since I was 'promised' a 'nice big update this weekend,' and a total of 3 months since the original promise was made. I wouldn't wait that long for a friend to follow through on a promise, but I have to wait for her. Just wait, and wait, and wait, because she holds my world in her arms and there's nothing I can do to change the situation other than send a friendly 'reminder.' I was nice in the email, and I simply said that I wanted to see if she had gotten a second to send something, because I was really looking forward to it. This is my 2nd email to her about this, (plus a text message) and I even said to her that I felt like a pain for asking again.

I wish I could find a way to explain that it's not the amount of time that bothers me as much as it is the broken promises. She is the one person I cannot and do not want to lose trust in. How can I not 'trust' the woman who is my child's mommy? I can't fathom it. I don't want to think about it and I don't want it to get to that point.

I talked with her father (bio) about this and he said that if she doesn't email by the end of the month, to let him know and he will write to her. She did say in the letter that she sent him that she'd be sending pictures to me soon and that she was sure I would share them with him, but if I didn't, to let her know and she would send him a set. So he can play dumb (won't be too hard - sorry, was that harsh?) and tell her I never showed him the photos so he would like his own copies. I know, I know...lying to her is awful. I'm desperate here.

Friday, March 16, 2012

How much?

How much disappointment can one person take? I don't care if this post sounds melodramatic (I don't care if that statement alone sounds melodramatic) but I am teetering between being really sad and just being plain old angry at the moment. I hate being let down. Doesn't everyone? I have no problem, NO PROBLEM at all with receiving pictures of A every few months as opposed to every single month (and sometimes more). I am fine with that. I am grateful for every single bit of her life that is shared with me through words and pictures and if her parents decide they want to cut out communication back to every few months rather than once a month, that is fine with me. Would I be happy? No, not really. But would I live? Yes. I will learn to live with it eventually - I am still trying to learn to live with my new life as a whole. I can adapt to it. I will make myself adapt to it. Looking forward to those emails are one of the few things that keeps me going. I hate going through this, but I would never get to feel that infinite happiness that I feel when I get the emails had I not gone through the infinite pain of losing my daughter. That happiness, which is untouchable by any other person, place, or thing, is amazing. That's all I want. I don't need it 12 times a year. 3 or 4 times a year is fine - hell, less would be fine if I knew. If I knew the rules.

I have had to unlink my email account from my phone because I was constantly checking for the notification that I got an email and it never came. Every morning when I woke up to a blank screen, it set the tone for my entire day. That is not how I want to live my life!

Again - I don't mean to sound ungrateful. That could not be any further from the truth. I just don't like being promised something over and over again, to no avail.

Two weeks ago yesterday, I got the email from her saying she would email that weekend. That email was in response to the text message she sent me two weeks before that, saying she was sorry it has taken so long and she 'promises to email tonight.' That text was in response to the text I had sent her two days prior, to ask about the email she had promised to me almost 2 months before that. A little crazy, no? It makes me wonder if there are no intentions of sending me pictures and those responses are being given to me to satisfy me in the moment, or if she truly means it and loses track of time. I want to believe that it's the latter - but I have seen and heard so many horror stories, that I just can't be sure.

Please keep your fingers crossed that she emails this weekend! We have always had great, consistent, honest communication and that was what made me so proud of my decision. That was 80% of what got me through the first few months - the constant updates and pictures. I knew that would wane, naturally, but I didn't know that I would be strung along for almost 3 months about a set of photos. Especially Christmas photos (of all times).

There are birth moms who absolutely love their adoption and haven't looked back once. Of course they hurt, but they find the positive in it and are truly, truly happy with the decision that they made.

There are birth moms who regret their decision and hate it every day of their lives, and just want their babies back. They have been lied to by the a-parents in some cases, or even if they haven't, they still simply feel they made the wrong decision.

Right now, I am in the middle of those two groups of women (and men). I am proud of my choice and knowing that my daughter has two parents and will want for nothing and will always be loved more than she can imagine makes me extremely happy. There are days that I "regret" it and wish she were with me - days that I feel that it's so unfair that girls in similar situations have their children beside them all the time, to hug, kiss, and hold - and I don't. There are days that I want to tell the world how amazing adoption is, and there are days that I want to advise anyone considering it to run the other way. I'm still new to all of this. A is not even a year and a half old yet. I know that I am torn.

But I don't want to be pushed over the line to the other side - the side with the people who fully regret it, and literally hate their choice every day of their lives. No matter what happens, I trust that my daughter will be trusted, loved, and safe for the rest of her life. And don't get me wrong - that is what's most important to me. Needing the photos is a selfish need on my part, I know this. Her health, well-being, and quality of childhood come first. But I can't sit here and tell you that if her parents were to cut off communication, that I will not completely crash and start to really regret it.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Small World

I'm still waiting *patiently* for the photos of my little one. It's been since her first birthday - granted, we did get to Skype with her and that was the  happiest I've felt since the moment I got to hold her - but still, that was a while ago. She turned sixteen months on the 2nd, and I'm really, really feeling the lack of communication. I got spoiled getting photos once a month (sometimes more) for the first year, and we never discussed slowing down or anything after she turned one. As I might have said, I talked to the a-mom on Christmas and she promised to send pictures as soon as they were back from their trip a few states over. The pictures never came, but the email about their displeasure with G did - as well as a promise that the pictures would come 'next weekend.' Well, next weekend came and went, as did the next, and the next (you get the idea). I sent her a text two weeks ago today, saying I just wanted to make sure everyone and everything was okay, and that I was looking forward to seeing the photos whenever she got a chance. She did write back, said she was very  sorry and promised to send an email that night.
I never got that email. I know things come up, but when you promise to do something and you can't follow through with it, can't you at least touch base to say you won't be sending pictures but want that person to know you didn't just 'forget' about them? It started to freak me out, and after a week had gone by, I sent her an email. I didn't want to come off as pushy in the email at all, because pissing her off in any way will get me nowhere. They hold all of the power now - something that doesn't make me too happy, but it's the price I have to pay for my daughter to have a chance at an amazing life. So I will live with it with a smile on my face.
They didn't hesitate to let "us" know when they were upset with G, so I thought I should put some of my feelings on the table, because of course when the email does come I will be thanking her up and down, and if I hadn't sent this email. she might think that the three/four months of no pictures didn't bother me at all, and it's not healthy for me to keep it all bottled up. I do not demand photos once a month or anything remotely close to that - all I expect is that when I am apologized to about something and subsequently promised something, I expect that it will be followed through with. I expect that of anyone. But this is the most fragile, delicate relationship on earth, and I have to remind myself to treat it as such.
This is the email I sent:

Hi C,

I am writing to double check on the email that you said was on my way last Monday night. I don't mean to nag and I definitely don't mean to come off as demanding whatsoever but I know you are a person of your word, so when you promised to send pictures last week, I hoped to see them maybe not that night but sometime within the week. I want you to know that I do respect your schedule and I do respect that life gets in the way of things sometimes!
My email on my phone occasionally deletes messages before I read them or diverts them to different folders automatically and I can't find them, so I was in part checking to see if you did in fact email and I didn't receive it.
As a mother, I know you can understand where I'm coming from when I say that the time between now and last Christmas feels like centuries when you know your child is still a baby and growing and changing every single day. She looks different to me from month to month and honestly it has been killing me not only to not see her for the past few months, but to be waiting and looking forward to an email that was promised but hasn't come.
We have all promised to have open and honest communication all the time, so that we can fix any issues that may arise as they come.....and from my side of this, this has become a bit of an issue and it is tough to address because the last thing I want to do is cause tension or do anything to risk my relationship with you. I am comfortable with sending this second email because I have come to love you almost like an extended family and thank you from the bottom of my heart for doing what I couldn't do properly for A.. But this is still very hard for me, and pictures of her make it a little easier and mean the world to me.
I hope you can understand where I'm coming from in this, as it is hard to express in email.
Talk to you soon,

I'm not sure if it was too mean, too nice, or what. I honestly think I was (in part) freaking out due to all of the adoption talk I've been involved in online lately. I removed myself from a Facebook birthmom group because it started to put ideas in my head that had nothing to do with me. I read about so many girls whose adoptions had closed, and it started out by the adoptive parents putting more and more distance between them. I started to realize that despite the fact that I have a wonderful relationship with her adoptive parents, them closing the adoption is a possibility that I always will be harshly aware of. I pray to GOD it doesn't happen, every day that I wake up. It's the first thing on my mind in the morning and the last thing on my mind at night. So, in reading how frequently it happened, I convinced myself it was happening to me. When I do get the update, and I write back to thank her, I will mention this to her so maybe it can be put into a little more perspective.

I read the email to one of my close friends who has been dealing with me and the funk I've been in for the past couple months over this and she said the email was very well-written and that I should definitely send it as-is. She said it was very respectful but still subtlety sent the message that I was upset. I then double checked with G to see if he thought it was too "bitchy" and he said it sounded perfect, so off it went to her.

I sent it on Tuesday afternoon and got a response from her on Thursday morning. She said that no, she hadn't had a chance to send anything yet but it was because she had a 'get it done or get fired' deadline at work, which she has had for the past seven weeks. She said the due date was tomorrow (Friday) for her project at work, said she was sorry and asked me to hang in there a few more days, and she promises to send a nice big update for me. She ended the email with a smiley face - which is a good sign. So now, I'm just waiting as patiently as possible and hoping it comes by the end of today.

In other news, I've come full circle back to my realization that I want to get away from here. So many things remind me of G, A, and all of the memories that I either want to forget because they hurt or want to forget because they were great and missing them hurts. And to top it off, last night my friend and I (the same one who read the email, knows the whole story about G and the baby) wanted to grab something in a supermarket, so we went into one in that we normally wouldn't go to because it's out of the way. When we were walking in, I got a sick feeling in my stomach and kept thinking that I was going to see someone in there that I didn't want to see. Sure enough, we were in line checking out and I was finished and waiting for my friend. She called me over and said 'did you see what I just saw?' and I asked her what, and she said 'C is here. And K.' My heart almost pounded out of my chest. K is A's biological half-sister, and C is her mother who is not my biggest fan (nor is she mine). I just didn't want a confrontation, I just wasn't in the mood, and I was ready to get out of there. As my friend and I were walking to her car, they came out of the store, too. Seeing her walking, holding her daughters hand as they walked to her car made me almost burst into tears. Inside I was screaming about how unfair it was. How can he father two children, and one of the women walks beside his child, holds his child, spends time with his child, and the other woman sits here writing in a blog about how she doesn't do those things with his child? I hated seeing them. Hated it. This world is just too small. K (who is 5, almost 6) had no idea that the biological mother of her little half-sister was in the same place at the same time as her. In fact, K may not even know she has a little sister. I kept imagining what it would be like if I had A with me at that moment, and K knew who she was from spending time with her on weekends or whatever. Would she come up and say hi, would A start clapping her little hands because she was happy to see her sister? Would her mother just look me up and down or would there be pleasantries exchanged? I'll never know, but I guess that's the beauty of it. That is the drama that I didn't want my child around - that and a million other forms of it that would come as part of a package deal with her birth father.

Lately, I've just been reminded of what I'm lacking. It's hard. I honestly think once I see photos of her, I'll ease up on myself a bit. I won't take things so hard, my heart won't be so heavy. I hope!