Friday, December 10, 2010

"I Can't Ever Admit This Out LOUD"

When we woke up the next morning, we willed the time to go faster so that we could meet our new baby. We ate breakfast, wandered around, took pictures, and finally, finally, it was time to go meet her. We talked about what she might look like now - the last picture we had see was when she was 8 months and now she was 16 months, would she have hair? Lots of teeth? Dimples? We were so completely expecting the baby in the photo, that we did not recognize the toddler they brought into the meeting room. And I will tell you people, it was not at all what I expected. I had expected a baby. A fuzzy, chubby, almost bald baby. The child that was brought to me was not any of those things. And forgive me, but my very first thoughts were "She is a beautiful girl. Now where is MY baby? That is NOT my baby." But I vowed never to speak that out loud because really, how awful. My mental picture did not line up with my new reality and I began to wonder what I had done. This child was set in her routines and loved the people that she was with. She would not even look at me during that first meeting! She tolerated Brian from a distance. It was clear that this was not going well at all. In the deepest, darkest parts of my heart I began to wonder if I would really love this little girl like I loved my other kids. I would talk the talk, most definitely, but could I walk the walk. This left me in a state of pure terror and panic. But not for a moment would I dare let anyone, anyone at all inside that place. What had I done? What had I done to my family? This was a big, fat mistake and I was responsible.

I am so ashamed and embarrassed to admit that. But there it is. I feel like people that are considering adoption need to know that it's not always instant connection, not always "typical", whatever that is. And please, please don't think for a minute that I don't advocate adoption. I absolutely do. Remember that this is the beginning of our story. The desire might be there, the brain and logic may be there, but sometimes, the heart part takes a minute to catch up. It was different because I did not know this child. I had no idea how she liked to be held or played with. I had no idea of the intimate details of her. I was expected to pick up the pieces of a life started in loss and I just wasn't feelin' it. I did feel protective. I did feel responsible. I felt guilt, massive heaps of guilt for feeling like I was feeling. I thought she was darling and precious and in some story book kind of way, I loved her. But it was different....