February 11, 2011

I could never have imagined...

The assignment:
This week's prompt is to write a piece that begins with the line, "I could never have imagined" and ends with the line, "Then the whole world shifted." We're going to stick with the 600-word limit this week.


I know a lot of you already know Pie's adoption story. I've written about it before. But how could I not choose that subject given the prompt?!

The result:
I could never have imagined that 7 weeks would change my life completely.

On November 24, 2009 my husband went to Chipotle to get a burrito and came out with a baby. Well, not exactly, but he did run into an acquaintance who mentioned his girlfriend was pregnant and asked if we wanted the baby. It was a sarcastic question, driven by the stress of the situation, but when my husband said yes things changed. Startled, the acquaintance asked if he was serious. At that point we had been in the adoption process for about 3 years, so my husband was dead serious. They parted ways with the acquaintance saying he would talk to the girlfriend.

We both sort of laughed it off and thought we'd never hear from them again. We were wrong. Just after midnight we got a text saying that the couple wanted to come talk to us about the baby and possible adoption. We set up a time for the following Sunday, November 29th. And then we had to live through Thanksgiving. We decided not to mention anything to our families for several reasons. The first was that we had no idea how the situation would play out. The second was that my older sister was having a c-section to deliver her first child on November 28th. So we kept this looming, consuming, overwhelming secret quiet.

Sunday arrived, and the couple came over to chat. We spent about 4 hours asking each other questions and discussing the situation. By the end of the visit the couple had decided to place the baby with us and asked that we go ahead and contact a lawyer. We did and the following week we met with her. Papers were drawn up and things were starting to get very real.

We spent the next few weeks telling our families and jumping at every single phone call. The baby had decided she was comfortable and was nearly two weeks past due. On January 12, 2010 we got the call. It was 7 weeks to the day that my husband went for that fateful burrito. We packed and raced out of the house so quickly that there were probably smoke outlines of where we had been standing. We got to the hospital at about 10:30 am and waited. And waited some more. Then there was some waiting.

At about 9:30 pm things were finally far enough along to start pushing. Up until that moment the birthmom hadn't decided what she wanted to do about people in the delivery room. Things were moving very quickly and she decided that I could stay. My husband and her boyfriend went out into the waiting room. 3 sets of 4 pushes and 16 minutes later at 9:46 pm my daughter was born. I have never seen anything so amazing. Letting me be present at the birth was an unbelievable gift.

There were a few tense moments immediately after the birth. My daughter was born in respiratory distress so a specialist had to be brought to the delivery room. After they got her sorted out and breathing again, they wrapped her up and brought her to where I was standing next to the bed. Her birthmom held her first and then when she was ready, she passed the baby to me. I can still feel the weight and warmth of my daughter, my daughter, in that moment. I realized I was now someones mom. Then the whole world shifted.