Friday, April 10, 2015

Sometimes I Break

Write a blog post inspired by the word: break.

There's lots of directions I could've taken that writing prompt, ha. But I'm gonna write about Superbowl Sunday this year and how I totally had a breakdown emotionally (and not because the Seahawks

I had a moment of panic a couple weeks before Shak was born... on Superbowl Sunday. Today, we finalized his adoption (YAY!!!) and looking back... everything went as smoothly as it could have, really. I kept waiting for something bad to happen, but it didn't. In the moment though... there were SO many possible things that could go wrong that I got overwhelmed. There were a lot of things to stress about and they all kind of converged on my mind at once...
  • Orchestrating an adoption with an agency halfway across the country that we've never worked with before = stressful. 
  • Flashbacks of taking a similar adoption roadtrip that ended with us coming home empty-handed = stressful. I wrote in my journal: "Hopefully we're not being dummy dumb dumbs by driving 15 hours to Kansas..."
  • Packing and preparing to travel in general and making sure we had everything we needed and were prepared = stressful.
  • Taking leave off from work when it's not really a job that my boss can get a temp for and feeling needed there = stressful.
  • Worried we wouldn't time it right and would miss the birth or go out there way too early = stressful for this planner personality right here!
  • Figuring out how to pull $20,000+ out of basically nowhere (I almost said "out of my butt," but that sounded gross) = stressful. 
  • Having to coordinate LDS Family Services (our original homestudy agency), Utah Adoption Specialists (who took over our homestudy after LDSFS got out of the adoption gig), Adoption Advertising (a random facilitator who got a big chunk of money for really no good reason), Adoption Connections (the Kansas agency and attorney), and our references who needed to turn in reference letters ASAP! = stressful. 
  • Reading reviews about how unorganized Adoption Connections can be... and then seeing that firsthand = stressful.
  • Not meeting S beforehand and thinking ahead to meeting her and how that would go = stressful.
  • Developing a relationship with expectant mom S while wondering if we could really trust ANYONE EVER AGAIN! I wrote in my journal: "I think at this point I'm just holding my breath until Shakir is born."
  • Zay had been calm and positive about this experience... and then the day I needed him to tell me everything was going to be okay, he admitted he was worried that I was going to be crushed again if this falls through and he questioned if we should really be doing this again... ugh = stressful.
  • Trying to do a Paleo diet while I'm stressed = MORE stressful. I wanted ALL THE CARBS.
  • Thinking ahead about actually taking care of two kids while working and Zay's in school... just all the logistics of how that was going to work out and how to prepare for that = stressful.
  • Wondering if I even deserved any blessings at this point in my life = stressful.

Sooo... even though for the most part I was just happy and excited to be a mom again and knew in my heart that this was the one we were supposed to pursue... it all hit me at once and I felt like I was hyperventilating. I burst into tears in the middle of Church and the Bishop's wife was trying to comfort me and I was a MESS. Ugh. I was blubbering and I remember asking if I was making any sense and she just said, "Well... no." Ha ha. But she said some things that really helped! There was just so much going on...

I was talking to a friend a little while back who was insisting I have a fundraiser AND a baby shower, even though I felt like I deserved NEITHER. She basically made me out to be a Saint and I needed some Karma to come back around to me (which made me feel super uncomfortable and made me blush!!) for how I interact with expectant moms and how I keep it together and think about the big picture and try to always put them first, despite what I want. She's an adoptive mom too, so we shared a lot of our experiences with each other. I love hearing adoption stories. I don't know how well I do it here on my blog, but in real life I'm a story-teller... so I was talking about this-that-and-the-other-thing that we've been through and my friend's just like, "You should write a book!" Ha ha. And kept encouraging me to do a fundraiser for this adoption. I finally agreed that we'd have a "welcome home" baby shower sometime in March (I'm ALL about throwing a PARTY! ha ha... and that ended up turning out so well!), but I didn't know about this whole fundraiser thing. The thought made me cringe. But... as much as I wanted to adopt, we didn't have all the funds right that second. We used up our savings and got an adoption loan for the rest. And I didn't actually set the fundraiser up until after we brought Shak home. So, at the moment... I was stressing about the money.

I started beating myself up about whether I deserved any of this. I kept thinking, "I'm getting another son!!!" Hello?! How can I ask for anything more than that? That is the miracle I've been hoping and praying for ... for what has felt like an eternity, but has really only been a couple of years of waiting. See? I'm a whiny brat. I'm impatient. I complain. I'm not a Saint. I don't have a sob story. I'm just a mom. Just a regular ole person. I just wanted a sibling for Kal. I just wanted another child. That is all. And it was finally happening. I was stressed because I thought I didn't deserve it!

Kal & my sister-in-law. This boy's too social to be an only child!

Just talking with S and getting to know her over those few months was enough to be overwhelming and make me burst into tears. We talked a lot... mostly texting since I was at work and it was just easier. She's so funny. And easy to talk to. We just talked about what we were doing for fun. She was bored out of her mind living at the agency's housing. She asked if we'd be bringing Kal with us when we came so he could play with her kids. I told her to think of fun stuff we could do when we got there. She said anything that would make her go into labor!! She was so done with the pregnancy at that point and had tried all the tricks in the book to get labor going. She just wished we were there already. She's so sweet. We talked about baby names. She loved Shakir. We talked about her religion and common names in our families. Some funny coincidences. Things that confirmed in my mind that THIS IS IT. When it's right, it's right.
With the failed adoptions behind me... thinking back, it's like I was in abusive relationships and then when I finally think maybe I can love again... HERE IT IS. This is what I wanted. I didn't know what I wanted until I felt it. A completely open adoption. No funny business. I don't worry whether she likes us or not. She's not hard to get a hold of. We have commonalities that are important to us. She is comfortable with us and isn't afraid to share information. She has ideas for her future and is excited to be a part of making our family grow. OMG. I worried about being excited. It felt so right, how could I not be excited??! But should we be??? I started panicking that it would all be pulled out from under us.

I was also overwhelmed with how much I was in love with this little boy. That deserved some tears as well. Look at this face! I love his little nose and lips. Just gorgeous. I couldn't wait to meet him. I worried I was getting "too" emotionally invested.

I found a babysitter for Shak who would watch him during Zay's classes once we brought him back home. It was a relief. I cried about that. I was spending a lot of energy tying up loose ends with paperwork, squeezing in hair appointments for everyone who wanted one before we left, helping plan for the Cub Scout Blue & Gold Banquet that was coming up, cleaning out the van, putting together the changing table, etc. Funnily, Zay had taken a picture of me all intensely trying to put that changing table together... and sent it to S. She was laughing at me! She said, "Go ahead, girl!" Ha ha ha. Dangit yall, I'm stressed! Don't laugh!! I'm just trying to get shiz done!! That's what I was thinking. Ha.

What I look like when I get *really* into my project.

At Cub Scouts one night. He likes pretending to be one of the big kids. :)

Anyways, so I had a meltdown. Couldn't stop crying. All my fears about adoption and the pain of infertility just came roaring back out of nowhere and I felt like I was crying so much that I was going to melt into a puddle on the floor. Of course it was Sunday and I was at Church and every testimony and every lesson got to me. The smallest thing and tears were falling again! I just couldn't make it stop. I thought, "It's February already. This baby is coming. Is he really going to be mine? Will I really get to be his everyday mother? Am I being dumb for getting excited?" Life would've gone on if this hadn't worked out. But it would've been a sad, sad life for awhile. And I would have had to swallow that disappointment down and find a way to keep pressing on with hope. All the fear I felt right then had suddenly driven out a lot of that hope that had been building. I kept telling myself to move forward with faith.

So, I cried. I felt beat up for a second. I told myself to GET IT TOGETHER. I couldn't go meet S and blubber and act like my life depended on this adoption working out and be an emotional wreck when I'm supposed to be the one who has her life together! I'm supposed to be the mom here. Get it together! And... I did. And everything worked out. But for a moment there, I did break.

So, we had our normal Superbowl party that day:

It was fun. :)  A few days later, I dealt with my stress by:

Chopping off my hair.

And playing with a friend and her kids. Tee hee.

These guys are best buddies, but I'm sure they were all fighting over the same toy in this moment. Ha.

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