Movin’ On

Good afternoon, friends!

Not since I took John Travolta to task for being an icky, semi-closeted creeper who gropes women publicly in the hope of appearing straight, have I had so many views on my blog. Wow!  I look at my stats every now and again, ever since that one time I accidentally learned they were there. I figured it out because WordPress actually personally contacted me to see if I had a website breech, because my page views per day went from around 150 to almost 13,000. I assured them there must be a mistake of some kind. They walked me through how to see my stats and sure enough, they were popping. I guess a lot of people don’t like John Travolta and were interested in reading about my abject horror at his behavior. I personally never had a problem with the guy until his busy hands/close talker/deviant showmanship at the Oscars, but that was all that I needed to add him to…My List. 

Anyhoo, for the past couple of weeks there have been 500-600 people following the events of our bad soap opera-like life, and finding that out was a great way to start the day! It feels pretty amazing to know that many people care. Or, that it was like watching a huge train wreck in slow motion installments and you couldn’t turn away no matter how hard you tried. Either way, I totally get it, and I thank you.

I’ve heard from a lot of folks, many of them wondering why I’m not simmering with rage over Carrie and her husband and their less than honorable intentions. I will tell you that it was a very hard, very intentional decision to forgive them. 

My first instinct upon learning the whole story was not, “Aw shucks. Who among us hasn’t used our baby to emotionally torture and extort paternity tests and gifts from an innocent family and receive nine months of free swag from the government?

I was pissed. Then shocked. Then angry. Then feeling sorry for myself because I was sure the entire universe was conspiring against the hubs and I to make bad things happen to us over and over again until we gave up. Then, I took a deep breath, ditched the dreaded victim mentality, and made a decision.
The pursuit of adoption takes a lot of energy. A lot of energy, and time, and focus. It is a full time job at times. If I chose to harbor anger or frustration towards them, they were just receiving more of my resources. They already received five weeks worth, after all. So, I forgave them as I have been forgiven so many times (I’m talking ’bout you, JC!”), and put those two in my review mirror. Well, except for this post of course, but it doesn’t count. I’m trying to make a point here people!
We are moving forward. It’s hard to keep the hubs and I down for long. That doesn’t mean we are sadness-free, just that we are keeping the faith. We have been ready for a baby in our arms for a long time and E sometimes asks me at bedtime where “his baby” is.  We will stay the course, with hearts full of hope that somewhere out there is a baby that needs a devoted and loving daddy, a goofy mommy, and a sweet big brother who is ready to share his cars!

Until next time!  One of these days I’m going to have actual good news to share!


We have closure, friends.

I think it has been clear for a while now that we have been bobbing and weaving through various shades of red flags.  It was our first time going down this road and we didn’t know what a red flag looked like, exactly.  We could only go with our gut, and hoped we would know when it was time to hold firm and when it was time to cut bait.  We received awesome feedback from YOU, the caring people who follow our journey, and we are so grateful for that because it was affirming and validating as we slowly realized that this is not the way adoption is supposed to work.

In our minds, babies are treasures, not bargaining chips or other methods of currency.  If we had been thinking differently, maybe we would have understood the game long before now.

As much as we had to fight to get information from our agency, our coordinator was facing the same fight to get information from the parents.  It was a cyclical nightmare that none of us could allow to continue for our own emotional health.  Fortunately, today, our coordinator was able to locate and touch base with Carrie’s social worker, who shared the following:  

 “Carrie shared her plan with me and the chance of this adoption going through is very slim.  The parents are very invested in raising their child. I would warn that I would be very surprised if adoption was the route they chose, regardless of the paternity test results.” 

She went on to share that Carrie’s husband, as well as friends and family, have been bringing gifts and clothes to the house on a regular basis.  Our coordinator, hoping for the best, assumed that Carrie had maybe changed her mind in the past couple of weeks.  The social worker said it was her impression that parenting had been the plan since at least the fall.  The fall? You can’t get much earlier than that when you have a June due date for crying out loud on Sunday!

So, why the ruse?  We can only be left to speculate about much of it.  Maybe they really were considering adoption and wanted an agency and a plan in place in case they decided that was their only option.  Maybe they knew they would need a paternity test and it costs a TON of money and an adoption agency would very likely pay for it.  They were still pushing hard for the paternity test through their social worker even today, and as you know the hubs and I majorly advocated to get it for them before the birth.  It was the right thing to do, you know the story.  But sadly the story was not entirely true, and they wanted to know the paternity for their benefit, not ours.  We lucked out that this was all discovered before we paid for half the test; it costs about 3K.

The next question: Why did they pick us?  They had to choose a family to stay in the program, and they had plenty of profiles to choose from.  Why did they pick us knowing they were going to parent the baby?  There is no way to know.  Maybe because we had a kid already, or because our profile shows we have a large, supportive network of family and friends?  I mean, if you have to screw someone over, I guess you pick the people who look like they have the best chance of bouncing back?  I don’t even begin to pretend I understand this mind set.  I will say this though, and I’m not trying to sound like a martyr:  I’m glad it was us rather than a childless couple.  As painful as this has been, it would have been absolutely unendurable if we didn’t have our sweet miracle to love throughout the whole ordeal.  Besides our faith in God’s plan, the hugs and kisses and silliness of our little boy were what made it possible for us to keep going and believe it was going to work out.  It’s funny though, it didn’t work out, but we’re still here, bent but not broken somehow. 

I should be angry at Carrie and her husband, but I’m not.  They were running a scam, yes, and lying to people, yes, and these things are unacceptable.  But I think it’s also the only way they know how to survive.   It’s too bad, because Carrie is a very smart women, and poverty and abuse of government programs are not the only options available to her.  She has the smarts to work herself out of her situation and she is only two years from being a nurse, which would provide a great living for her family.  She could not keep the baby and do the nursing program though, so I guess she is giving up/delaying that dream. What I would want Carrie to know (but probably not her husband, because he didn’t seem like the type who would care much), is that her actions caused us great pain, even if it was unintentional.  And I think that her day-to-day life was so deeply mired in crisis and chaos that she wasn’t even aware of how her choices left us reeling in anxiety and sorrow time and time again.  

Since the day we were informed we were chosen to adopt, April 1st  (over five weeks ago), Carrie provided just enough tidbits of information to the agency (and then them to us) periodically to let us believe she wanted this adoption no matter what, and we were the family she wanted.  We believed her and the agency believed her.  Our lunchtime adoption meeting on April 17 was magic to me; I believed her when she said we were just the couple she had hoped for.  Apparently I’m too trusting/gullible and she’s a fantastic actress.  
The past five weeks were some of the worst of my life.  It was a constant struggle of emotions; should I be eagerly anticipating the birth of our son, or should I be an anxious mess because we haven’t heard from the expectant mother in a week?  Should I be destroyed because I found their baby registries online, or should I believe Carrie when she said her mother did it?  In five weeks, this adoption was on and off three times.  That takes a serious toll on a person.  Much is written about the emotional pain and suffering of birth mothers, but it is taboo to mention the emotional turmoil of adoptive parents.  Adoption coordinators might tell you, “You don’t know what it’s like to lose a baby.”  That, unfortunately, is some bullsh*t.  The fact is, most adoptive parents know exactly what that’s like.  We find ourselves at adoption agencies because we have lost babies.  That’s not nothin’ and our losses should be acknowledged, too.  

To summarize: There will be no bouncing baby boy joining our family in mid-June.  We accept this and are dealing with it because it was never real.  It certainly wasn’t the baby God has intended just for us, although we know he/she is out there somewhere.  This journey is hard; even potential leads are difficult to get excited about or take seriously, because we’ve been there before so often that our instinct is to automatically assume the worst.  We’re going to work on that though, because that’s no way to live, and the baby that is destined to be ours deserves better than that, and so do we.