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Friday, April 25, 2008

Footprints of a Family, our second adoption journey, part 14

this journey begins here

Tuesday morning we awoke bright and early and went to the hospital. Laura was in good spirits and Michael was doing very well. We spent the morning visiting and enjoying Michael. We had numerous visitors, including our attorney and agency social worker. Dave and I also had the pleasure of meeting Laura's extended family of aunts, uncles, and cousins. We were having a marvelous time until the phone calls began.





The phone calls were from Michael's birthfather's mother and family. They started in Laura's room and they were not congratulatory or positive in any way. After numerous inflammatory calls, we stopped answering the phone. The calls then went to the nurse's station. The accused us of numerous, erroneous, and downright ludicrous things. The were under the assumption that we were wealthy and we were paying Laura for this precious baby. The nurses were wonderful and amazing. They fielded these horrendous calls with poise and professionalism. They protected us from this hostility, even when the calls became more and more frequent, and more inflammatory. We knew what was happening outside of the hospital room, but we were also cocooned in the safety of the hospital room. Deep down, we were not concerned with our physical safety, but our emotional and mental safety was threatened. The birthfather still had not signed his papers, and as delusional as he was, he still had rights. He did not want the baby, but he wanted his share of the "profits". If only he knew that the only "profits" Laura recieved was a broken heart, a peaceful one, but still a bit broken.





The day was passing and eventually the phone calls stopped. The visitors trickled away and it was soon discharge time. Laura and Michael were going home....Michael with us, and Laura with her mother. Laura wanted to make the occasion a special one. Her grandmother, Michael's birth great grandmother who shares his birthday, handmade baby gowns for Michael. Laura and I dressed him in one of the gowns and wrapped him in a blanket Laura bought for him. Laura and her mother carried this precious bundle to the hospital chapel. We followed.





In the chapel Laura had a special "handing over ceremony". She placed her son in our arms and told us she was giving him to us so he could have the life she felt she was unable to provide for him. She was trusting us to love him and raise him into a healthy and happy man.





We held Michael in our arms and thanked Laura for her selflessness and promised to love and nurture Michael. I looked in her eyes and saw her love for him and us and hoped I could live up to her expectations. At that moment I saw into her soul, what a beautiful site.





Laura, her mother, Dave and I hugged and cried and hugged and cried more. We then went back to Laura's room and we gathered up Michael's belongings. Dave and I left the hospital with our son, in our hearts we were carrying Laura also.





We went to our hotel room and prepared for our first night with our son. We called my parents immediately so Cassie could talk to her new brother. Our attorney estimated that we would be going home by the weekend.....it was Tuesday night....just a few more days....we hoped...





to be continued.....

17 comments:

Stella said...

I cannot imagine what it was like for LAura. You capture so much of this so beautifully and gracefully. Your feelings, years later, are still so raw. And you do a wonderful job of capturing Laura, too. Picturing myself in that chapel giving my baby up is just heart wrenching. But hearing that Laura was mature enough to understand that you and Dave could provide for Michael in a way she couldn't was amazing!

as always, on the edge of my seat...

karisma said...

Wow! It sounds so special and beautiful the way you all bonded so well. Much better than the way they used to wrench the babies away and the mother didnt even have a cuddle or know what happened to them. I feel that although she must have been sad she had strong peace of mind that her baby was going to parents she knew would love and nurture him.

Hugs xxx

Tera said...

Does Michael still have the blanket and gowns from his birth family? Oh, wow, I cannot imagine being in that chapel with all of you. To be able to see into another person's soul...how beautiful...the birth mother of your son. These stories you tell are so treacherous and beautiful and sad and happy all rolled into one. I'm sure happy I only read the stories and didn't have to actually live through it. I'm not sure my body could have handled that major range of emotions that was necessary.

I hope the birth father starts to show a little grace in the part 15!

cyndy said...

I know it all went well, but dang, this suspense is killing me! lol Poor Michael's birth father sounds like a jerk. =(
P.S. There's a little sumthin'-sumthin' for ya on my blog. ;o)

Cynthia said...

I am boohooing like a baby.

THis story is amazing.



One question...How did the breastfeeding go?

Heather said...

Alison,

I'm sitting here trying not to cry. Poor Laura - what an amazing and wise girl for someone so young. The birthfather and his family sound horrendous - I'm sorry you both had to go through that.

Looking forward to the next installment.

swampy said...

I cannot fathom what it must have felt like for Laura to hand that baby to you. BUT, I can fathom the joy in your hearts as you welcomed that baby into lives.

Pamela said...

you really need to put your story in book form, you know.

ChrisB said...

I absolutely agree with Pamela's comment. The way you have managed to convey all the emotion of the day in those beautifully written words is truly amazing. I'm glad no one can see me crying on the key boards!

From your last sentence I guess you didn't make it home as quickly as you hoped!

Irene Latham said...

I love the "handing over ceremony." Rituals can provide such comfort and a "safe" place to put all those swirling emotions. They do something like this at the adoption agency where my mother serves as a foster parent. (Foster parent serves as go-between instead of direct contact between birth parents and adoptive parents.) What a gift this is to Michael to know he was encased in love from the start. It must help ease that ache of being "given away." Were you consciously making connections about your own adoption while going through these adoptions for your children? I'd love to hear more about how your perspective changed as you traveled this journey. xxoo

Rose said...

That is an amazing story.
By the way I tagged you for a meme.

Beth from the Funny Farm said...

Wow! How wise, caring and loving was Laura for having the grace to allow you folks to adopt her baby.

Jo Beaufoix said...

Laura and her family sound amazing. I am all nervous now to see what happens next.

ConverseMomma said...

In tears, as always. It was worth coming back to blogging for this. Missed you, hon.

lisa marie said...

I feel so intimate with your family through all these posts. ;)

lisa marie said...

I feel so intimate with your family through all these posts. ;)

Laura McIntyre said...

I love how its much more than you adoption the baby, the involvement you have with the birth family is wonderful .
The father sounds like a right piece of work though, why must money come before your own flesh and blood