Today also happens to be our own personal adoption day, or “Gotcha Day.” It was the day I held my son in my arms for the first time. It was the first time I was called “Mom.” The first time I felt there was something in this world that was bigger than me. The first time my life truly revolved around another human being. It was the first time I could say I was truly living the life I was destined to live.
I thought it fitting that I share a post I wrote a while back, about this very day, three years ago…
I’ve shared various parts of my adoption story; how I came to choose adoption, our finalization day and choosing the date, and some of the steps along the way. Today, I’d like to share the most precious story of our journey.
The day we met.
I was waiting for the phone call, the one that said my baby was ready for me.
At birth, my son had been placed with a wonderful foster mother who had taken great care of him for the first nine weeks of his life. I had already had the presentation, received photos, and waited on pins and needles while a judge decided my child’s fate.
I received the call from my Social Worker on November 19, saying that we were clear, and I could finally meet my baby. The plan was for me to go and visit with him the next day, on a Tuesday evening, and come back to pick him up and take him home the following day.
Monday night was filled with much preparation and anticipation. I washed bedding, set up the nursery, and bought an infant car seat and a few outfits, including a “Baby’s First Thanksgiving” outfit, since the holiday was just three days away. My purchases were still in my car when I went to visit the foster mom’s house the next day.
I barely slept that night, and just plowed through work the next day, as it was really NOT where I wanted to be. I even agonized over what to wear, because, you know, first impressions and all.
The thirty minute car ride to the foster mother’s house, I just kept telling myself to breathe. I was about to meet my child for the first time.
When I pulled up, I realized my Social Worker wasn’t there yet, and I was 20 minutes early. My heart was racing as I walked up the pathway to the front door and rang the bell.
A child answered, and went to get her mother, who came down the hall with an infant wrapped in a soft blue and white striped blanket. Tears filled my eyes as she placed the baby in my arms.
“Here’s your baby,” she said, smiling; and to my son, “Meet your Mama.”
I just held him and looked at him for the next 30 minutes until the Social Workers arrived. Like I mentioned, the plan was that this would be just a visit and I would come back and pick him up the next evening. The foster mom questioned the Social worker, “Why can’t she just take him home tonight?”
I don’t think I took a breath for the next minute while the Social Workers pondered her suggestion.
“I guess that would be ok.” That’s when my mind started racing. Could I really do this alone? “Do you have a car seat?”
I told the Social Worker I had purchased the car seat, but hadn’t even taken it out of the box yet. That had been on tonight’s agenda! They set it all up for me while I just got to hold my baby.
I signed the paperwork, gathered up his belongings, said goodbye to the Social Workers and hugged the foster mom. We were off to start our lives together.
I remember praying in my heart as I secured him in the car, asking God for guidance, and above all thanking him for the most precious gift of my life.