Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Yeah, sometimes it's a good feeling: happiness, joy, exuberance. Usually it's not. It's disappointment, sadness, heartbreak. And as much as you've told yourself that you have moved on from that situation, as much as you truly believe you want what's best for that person and you don't care about anything else, when that gut feeling hits you, you discover the truth of what you feel. Not what you think you feel, but what you feel deep beneath the pep talks you have given yourself about your attitude and how a mature adult would think, act, and feel.
I had one of those revealing gut moments tonight. And I sit here heartbroken. And so unsure of myself.
The one that got away- well, for me, he really did get away. And he married someone, after telling me that the reason it wasn't going to work was because he really wasn't ready to be married.
It hurt, his rejection. The way he casually and easily pushed me out of his life after I had trusted him and given him my whole heart. It took a long time to stop crying myself to sleep, and immeasurably longer to start to trust someone again. Even now, it remains difficult for me to fathom giving my heart to someone so completely as I did to him. So when he said it was over, I was literally crushed.
But I believed that it was for the best, because if he was fooling himself about being ready for marriage, then there was no reason to continue our relationship. So I told myself that it was for the best, and I hoped he would take the time to heal, to move forward in his personal growth, to truly get to know himself and re-evaluate what he thought he wanted out of life.
What he did was get married 13 months after we broke up, to someone that he didn't know when we were together.
Finding out tonight was like a slap in the face. It brought back all those feelings of rejection, of heartbreak, of the raw, unbridled feeling of being alone. And with it came feelings of worthlessness. Of being the woman who has something so intrinsically wrong with her that she is un-marryable. Of being so afraid of getting hurt again. Of never having someone. Of growing old alone.
The gut doesn't lie, and besides the fact that I clearly wasn't over this guy, my gut reaction tonight showed me something else: as much as I know that I don't need to be married to be happy, I so very much want to be married.
For a while, I had myself pretty convinced that I didn't really want to be married. Boy was I deceiving myself. I will say it right now, because I know it is true: not only do I want to be married, I desire it above most other things. I feel like saying that is some unholy confession- some revelation of my weakness. Because women these days are supposed to be okay with not being married, right? Especially the single women who go about pursing their career, education, and family without a man, like I paint myself to be. Like, there is this cultural mindset that I am supposed to enjoy being single, right? And that it's old-fashioned to want to be married again.
But I do, what can I say? I can't deny that gut reaction.
He performed well above the average score, and passed with flying colors! How ROCKSOME is he?
Anyway, do you know what all that means? It means that now he can write me scripts for narcotics! (Just kidding!) But it does mean that he can pick up some very well paid overtime, and might just be getting someone a very nice present in the near future.
By the way, I hear that Paris is lovely at Christmastime, and that Greece is wonderful in the spring:)
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
I don't want to be mean, but maybe I should make a sign for this waiting period:
Abigail: I don't know.
Me: Well, were you having trouble sleeping? Did Lily sit on your head? Did you have a bad dream?
Abigail: I had a bad dream. About a monster.
Me: A monster? What did it look like?
Abigail: Well, it was white. With polka dots. And stripes!
Saturday, April 26, 2008
So, I would like to take a minute to let you all give a shout out to the little girl that is the inspiration for this blog... Maybe something like this:
Hi sweetest girl! This is your Momma, shoutin' out my love, from the Sweetest Place on Earth- Hershey PA! Love you and can't wait to meet you!
Okay, hit us with your shout outs!
Thank you to everyone who is encouraging me in the wait for a referral. I am bathed in a sense of peace about my referral- it will come at just the right time. Not a moment to soon, and not a moment too late. God knows what He is doing, and I trust Him with this.
When I was pregnant, I went to a routine doctors appointment and within hours I was hooked up to machines and receiving medications to induce labor. They had found a few concerning things on physical exam, followed up with an ultrasound, sent me to an emergent ultrasound with a specialist, and directly admitted me to the hospital. I wasn't planning for Abigail to come then; in fact, I hadn't even packed my suitcase!
But God knew just what He was doing. If my doctors appointment had been a few days earlier, the complications might have been missed. If my appointment had been a few days later, Abigail might not have made it. God was looking out for me and baby Abigail, and He knew just when to make things happen- even if it wasn't my plan:)
So, I feel really comfortable in this waiting. Yes, I am eager to hold my little girl. I want to be with her, to love on her, to bring happiness and joy and love into her life like she has already brought into mine. I am impatient to hold her little hand while we walk to the ice cream store, to share a scoop of Butter Pecan and see her face when she gets "brain freeze", to stroll home under a sky full of stars, and to tuck her and Abigail into bed and say our prayers of thanksgiving. I hopeful in my anticipation, thinking of how I will comb her hair into puffs and rub lotion onto her little arms and legs. I can hardly contain my excitement of sharing a new granddaughter with my parents, and seeing her hugging people who mean so much to me. And I could burst, knowing how much Abigail loves her little sister.
But I am comfortable in this waiting. God's timing is always right, and He is watching out for my little one, just as He was watching out for Abigail. Thank you for your encouragement and prayers. I am so blessed by you all!
Friday, April 25, 2008
Tonight, the subject came up again as we got ready to take a walk with Doctor John to the ice cream shop. John jokingly said that if you want shoes to help you run faster, you need to get Nikes. I don't think she picked up on the joking tone in his voice, because when we got back from our (very tasty) walk, this exchange took place:
Abigail: So, Doctor John. Do you have Neekees?
Doctor John: Neekees?
A: Yeah, you know, those shoes to help you run fast.
DJ: Oh, Nikes?
A: Yeah, O'Nikes. Do you have a pair of O'Nikes? I think my momma has a pair of O'Nikes because she is a good runner and can beat me when we have running races.
I thought that was pretty funny. Snort-worthy funny, actually.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Like most people who are "imports," she is here because of a connection to the medical center- her hubby is a medical student (considering doing residency in Chicago, coincidentally:) We got to talking, and I told her I was a nurse, but that I am considering other careers and definitely trying to leave the bedside because I am tired of being a glorified butt-wiper. Because that is what my job is most of the time.
We shared a laugh and moved on in our conversation, when all of the sudden the lady who was sitting kitty-corner from us jumped up, stomped over to us, and looked me in the eye and proclaimed "if that is what you think nurses do, you are sadly mistaken." Then she huffed away.
Um, okay. So she was listening into our conversation. Fine. (We were admittedly talking loudly- I mean, we were sitting outside and our kids were running in the yard next to us and playing and hollering- you have to talk loudly under those conditions!) Fine. Listen in. But lady, get your facts straight! If you are going to listen in and then be gutsy enough to comment on someone else's conversation, at least know what you are talking about!
Don't tell me that I don't know what nurses do! I am a nurse, and every day that I go to work, I LIVE IT! So I know what nurses do!
I wish I had spoken up rather than stare at her (large) backside as she stormed off.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
~ 2 cumulative exams
~ 1-15 page paper
~ 1- 5 page paper
~ 4 statistics homework assignments
~ 3 class reviews
~ 1 nutrition homework assignment
~ 1 case management homework assignment
So blogging is pretty much on hold for now. But never fear, this always happens during the last week or 2 of the semester, and I always return during semester break with all sorts of stuff to say! Until then, any prayers you want to say to help me get it all done and done well would be appreciated.
Being this frenzied in school certainly makes the adoption waiting process go much more quickly:)
Sunday, April 20, 2008
She changed it up a bit last night:
"Dear God, please help the orphans and the cat orphans so that they could have food, money, and clothes, except the cat orphans because they don't need clothes. So help them have fur, God."
So, much past her bedtime, I sent her into her room to put on her PJs. She came back out, saying that she wanted to pick different jammies than what she wore the night before, and could she put those into the laundry? Okay, sure. She heads back in and comes out with one of her new nightgowns that I picked up at the thrift shop, and wondering if she could wear that. Okay, sure. The third time she comes out already in her nightgown and says
"Wow, Momma, how did those get in there?!?"
She was so tired it took her 3 trips into her room to discover her shelves!
I am trying to be careful to make special places for each of the girls in their room. The room they are sharing is not large, so this has required thought. They are sharing a double dresser, and Abigail has the "left" half and bottom 2 middle drawers. Her sister gets the "right half" and top middle drawer. They each have their own bookshelf with 3 bins each to put "their" stuff. Each has a shoe basket in their closet, and their own bin for hair things. At the same time, I am making them share. They have to share the dress-up clothes bin and babydoll bin, as well as the toybox and toy shelves in their closet. And all of their books will be shelved together on the big bookshelf in the hall. It's been difficult trying to decide how much "yours," "mine," and "ours" to allow, since they will have to share many things.
Friday, April 18, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
This week's highlights include:
~ Not only did I get the bunk beds, I taught Abigail how to get on and off them with ease! And I even found a mattress for the bottom bunk!
~ Received some lovely books from Chris and Jess. Thanks guys! We love them and may even be so bold as to post a book review here.
~ There was a big mess up with getting my certificate of completion from NCFA for my Hague training, but it was all straightened out by the wonderful Jessica, and now I am good to go!
~ And of course, the biggest news was the adoption grant I was awarded!
Onward! One more week to the window!
Monday, April 07, 2008
I just got word today that I have received a $4,000 grant from Shaohannah's Hope, the adoption grant organization that was founded by Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman!
I love this organization because they are one of the few Christian adoption organizations that gives grants to single adoptive parents, not just married couples. They firmly believe that kids belong in a family, and they are working to make that happen for as many children as possible. So thanks Shaohannah's hope, thanks Steven and Mary Beth, and thank you God!
I was blown away when Abigail's response to my "what's wrong?" was this...
What? Where did that come from? And why? A little probing by momma revealed that at some point during the weekend, Abigail had heard on TV that "once they have a new baby, your parents don't love you anymore." What a horrible thing to hear as a 5 year old waiting for her new sister!
I reassured her, cuddled her, hugged and kissed her, held her, and prayed for her. I explained that parents never ever stop loving their children, no matter what. I reminded her of all the other families we know who have more than one child, and specifically of (Aunite) Moriah and (Uncle) Josh who just welcomed their second child, Selah, into this world. Did they stop loving Charis because Selah was born? No way! We even called Auntie Moriah to ask her about it, and she should know because she is the oldest of 4 kids! Her mom and dad didn't stop loving her when her brothers and sister were born, and they will never stop loving her.
This was one of my fears with adoption- with adding another child to my family in general. I knew it would be hard on Abigail since she has been an only child for so long. But I expected difficulty sharing toys, sibling rivalry, and the like. I never anticipated this. So, what should I do?
I know I am not yet in "The Window," but it is coming up soon, and I am hoping that Gladney will have a round of referrals this week or next, so I just wanted to make sure that they could contact me, considering my place on the FBI list.
Okay, yes, it does make me sound a little desperate.
Sunday, April 06, 2008
Do you remember the odd/scary patient that brought Doctor John and I together for the first time? Well, Mr. H. ended up being my patient again this weekend. Now, he didn't remember me, but I definitely remembered him!
As per usual, he was demanding, cranky, and uncooperative. It tried my patience to care for him, and yet, every time he got on my nerves, I tried to remember how much I had to be thankful for because of him. Things got really bad between him and his medical team, and he ended up leaving today without the treatments that he really should have had. He was simply "done" with being in the hospital, and wanted to leave. We couldn't make him stay to get better, so we let him go.
As upset as he was about the whole process and as anxious as he was to leave, he took a minute to have this exchange before he walked out...
Mr. H: Grace, how long have you been a nurse?
Grace: Just about 2 years.
MH: Really? Seems like it should have been longer!
G: Well, it's been long enough (smile, laugh.)
MH: Well, you have a real knack for it. Thanks for taking such good care of me.
When I told the other team members what he said, their jaws hit the floor. It was totally uncharacteristic of him to even use my name, let alone thank me for something! I was literally shocked, and could only think to say "Well, thank you." But seriously, coming from him, it really meant a lot.
And that wonderful feeling lasted for about 27 minutes. Until someone pooped blood on me.
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Okay, this is not strictly adoption related, but I thought this was funny. As you will see, we got the bunk beds delivered, but they delivered a light wood ladder even though the rest of the set is dark wood(they are correcting it!. So, ignore that. Also, ignore Abigail's box spring that is haing out on the bottom bunk. Still need to get a mattress for that bunk, and I have no idea what I am supposed to do with a twin size box spring! Anyway, check out Abigail's first attempts... (these videos are a few minutes long, but there is some really funny stuff:)
Next, we have a whining intervention. Yes. Intervention (that's for you Jess and Jen!) Someone was having a bad attitude as she is prone to getting when she thinks she can't do something, so Doctor John had to show her what's what.
Finally, Abigail had success... and a major wedgie!
Wednesday, April 02, 2008
Oh my word, where has the past week gone? I can't believe I am in week 11 of waiting! Seriously, it seems like I was typing the Week 10 post just yesterday, and here it is week 11 already! I hope that once I receive my referral, the wait for court seems to fly by just as quickly as this wait has been going.
This week has really been focused on trying to get caught up in school. When I say that I am having a difficult time concentrating, I mean it! I think I get this way at about the same point each semester, but it just so happens that this semester I have a really good reason to be distracted!
This week's highlights are not very numerous, but important nonetheless.
~Received a wonderful note from my caseworker. Jessica is new to Gladney's Ethiopia team, and I have to admit that when I found out that my case was being moved to her, I was apprehensive. However, she has been professional, kind, responsive, and caring throughout this process, and she fits right in with all the other wonderful people at Gladney. I email her the silliest, most random questions (which is why I am your go-to girl for that silly information) and she never gets cross or irritated with me. God knew what He was doing when He put us together, because it takes a special person to put up with my incessant questions. (Natural curiosity+ anxiousness for my child= excessive random questions.) God bless her. I think we should start a National Adoption Caseworker Appreciation Day! Or at least a Blog-o-sphere Wide Adoption Caseworker Appreciation Day! What do you think? Anyone what to help organize that? (I am being serious, and someone needs to come up with a better name!)
~ Spent some time further educating myself about the legal and ethical implications of international adoption. The further along in my adoption journey I get, the more I feel the need to support and promote not just following the letter of the law in the process by ensuring the legality of the adoption process, but also following the intent of the law by promoting the most ethical practices in this journey. This was a matter of much discussion on one of the Yahoo Ethiopian adoption groups to which I belong. I am so glad I chose Gladney as my agency because I feel that they are truly not only legal in their adoption procedures, but ethical as well. If you are considering international adoption, please take the time to educate yourself about the legal and ethical practices before choosing an agency, and make sure that the agency you chose upholds the highest standards of ethics. If you have questions about how to choose an ethical agency, feel free to email me! I am not an expert, but I am happy to point you in the direction of some great resources!
~ This week's biggest adoption milestone? The bunk beds were delivered this morning!!!!