Sunday, January 22, 2012

One Month Old

I always considered myself great at multitasking.  As you can see by the date on my last post this has all gone out the window.  That's ok.  We have had a lot of settling in to do, much cuddling to get in, and lots of kisses to accumulate.  So the update is that our little Logan is one month old as of yesterday.  He is alert for longer periods during the day, sometimes likes tummy time, and he is following things with his eyes.  When we went to his doctor appointment which was at 3 weeks he now weighed 8 1/2 pounds already!  He is a good eater and has found his voice.  He used to just fuss when it was time to eat but now he means business when it comes to eating so you better get that bottle ready fast!

It has been nice to be back home and getting the closest you can get to a routine when you have a baby.  My mom was here the first week we got home so this past week was my first week alone with Logan...well three days cause Bill was off Mon for Martin Luther King day and Friday cause we had our first post placement visit with the social worker.  No major catastrophes.

In fact the most challenging day was today.  Bill had to run out and as soon as he left we had an explosive diaper up the back and all.
To the bathtub we went.
Then I realized we were out of formula.  I thought we were going to have enough to get through tomorrow when we are seeing the doctor again cause I am wondering if he might change his formula.  No not so much.  So off to Target we go...only to find the shelf empty of the one I need.  Next stop- Walmart.  Got what we need.  Back home I let the dogs out of the cage who apparently were angry that I left cause they both left me a fun surprise in the cage.
To the bathtub we went.
Time to feed Logan.  All is going well again and time for a change.  A little pee slips past the diaper but I caught the rest.  No problem.  I got the next diaper.  But wait, where are the wipes?  In the other room.  I made a rookie mistake as I left the diaper over him but didn't close the tabs.  Who knew he would pee so quickly again.  Well I learned my lesson cause when I returned it was like one of those spinning sprinklers had been in the room!
To the bathtub we went.
To top it off Oreo puked on his dog bed.  Awesome.

This was all in just a matter of like three hours.  Bill came home and asked how everything went.  After I told him all the fun we had he responded by saying "it sounds like you've had a pretty shitty day".  (Insert drum and symbol sound here)  No pun intended.

After all this we still managed to set up our one month photo shoot.  We set it up in his nursery which by the way I totally realize we have never posted pictures of it but that post will be coming soon.  Logan did really well and I think they turned out cute...but as Logan's mommy I just might be a little biased :)


Friday, January 6, 2012

Our Christmas Miracle

I have been wanting to share with you our exciting news here on my blog but with everything going on, tonight is the first moment I have had to sit and write.

Not too long ago we had no idea of what our adoption journey would be.  Bill and I imagined and dreamed of what the story would look like but had no idea of just what God had in store for us.  Most of December left us wondering if we would ever have a little one to spoil at Christmas and we had focused our minds on the fact that maybe 2012 would finally be our year.  Who knew that on December 21, 2011 our story would begin to unfold.

I taught in the evening on Wednesday the 21st.  The agency called my phone first at 6:05pm and when they didn't catch me they called Bill next.  I just got done teaching a class and decided to check my phone at 730pm before my next client came to workout.  I saw several missed calls from Bill and a text that said "Call Me...WoooHooo!"  "No, it couldn't be" I thought.  I called him right then and Bill told me he spoke to the agency, there is a situation, and we have a baby boy in Springfield IL right now!  I couldn't believe it at first.  I just kept repeating it like a question...we have a baby? My hands were shaking and I didn't know wether to laugh or cry so I think I did both.  My client came in and I screamed "we have a baby!" - she had no clue we were even adopting so that was a surprise to her.  Luckily she understood that there was no way I could concentrate on Pilates at that point so she said congrats so that I could get home.  Bill made me promise I was calm enough to drive home.  I was very careful- but calm?  How could I be calm? I had just heard the best words I had ever heard in my life!

Bill began telling me some of the details but even he said the conversation was a blur after he heard we have a baby.  So when I got home I ran in the door and we hugged each other so tight.  Then we began jumping up and down with the excitement like kids that just opened the Christmas present they have been asking Santa for all year.  I might or might not have done a couple leaps down our hallway:)  We got right on the phone together with our adoption representative to get all the details.  He was born at 2:47pm was 6lbs 14oz and 20 inches long.  She asked if we could leave the next morning to get to the hospital.  I wished we could have left that night but we wouldn't have been able to get into the hospital at that time.  At this point we told our moms and Bill's dad and they were just as surprised and thrilled as we were.  It was the longest night filled with joyful anticipation of all that awaited us.

I think I first started pacing the floor trying to think of everything we had to get in order as we knew we wouldn't be able to leave the state with the baby for a certain amount of time per the Interstate Compact of the Placement of Children(ICPC).   I made a quick list of the basics we needed to get and we headed to Target.  I am so thankful for holiday hours.  We even made it to Kohl's and they were locking the doors at midnight as we were leaving.  We already had a car seat but we picked up the other essentials we would need right now and when Bill wasn't looking I might have been throwing more cute clothes I saw and a stuffed monkey for Christmas in the cart too- you know essentials:)  Work, dogs, bills, house, shopping, packing...somehow we sorted through it all by 10am the next day.  Bill tried to get some sleep as he would be doing the driving but I couldn't sleep a wink.  I stayed up washing the new clothes so they were ready, I packed and got stuff organized, I even watched It's a Wonderful Life to pass the time.  I ended up falling asleep for a half an hour at 630am before we had planned on getting up at 7 to get ready.

It was so close to Christmas that we didn't know if anyone would even have room for boarding the dogs on short notice and we didn't know how long we would have to be gone.  So we packed up the SUV with the dogs and all and headed to Springfield.  We found a pet friendly hotel where we could take the dogs right away and then we were on our way to the hospital.  Now originally the birthmother did not want to meet us but on the way there we were told she had changed her mind.  I became very nervous as  I began to think of what we could possibly say to the woman who was making the most loving and selfless decision anyone could make.  We stopped at the gift shop to buy her flowers.  We entered her room and introduced ourselves to her and her mother.  It was so hard to put into words how we felt, but we told her we could never imagine what she is going through but we thanked her for making the best decision for her baby that is also giving us a chance to become parents.  Her mom broke the tension by asking us to sit down because we were making her nervous.

 It was a special and difficult experience all at the same time.  It was difficult because you had two completely opposite ends of the spectrum in one room.  We were completely elated while they were going through something devastating and yet we were all trying to be respectful of each other's feelings.  It was special because we believe it really helped to bring closure and peace to everyone involved.  It was helpful for us to see how at peace the birthmother was with her decision.  It was also very special because we were able to really talk with her about her family and her pregnancy.  They are moments and stories we will be able to share with our son as he grows up.  She did not want to see him even as she gave birth so we were surprised when we were talking with her that she asked the nurse to bring him to the room for us to hold him for the first time.  They brought him down and I asked her first if she wanted to hold him and she responded "no go ahead he is yours" It was then I understood.  I believe she was wanting to place and see that baby with us as a family right away.  That is the picture she wanted to leave with and I just admire what a brave, kind, loving, unselfish, intelligent, person she is.  I will never forget the incredible thing she has done for us and I thank God for her and pray for her everyday.

Holding him in our arms for the first time was just surreal.  After so much hoping and praying for so long it was hard to believe we were actually in that moment.  I thought for sure I would have cried even tears of joy but I think I had cried over so many ups and down the last three and half years that that particular day was reserved for pure happiness only.  The first thing I thought was just how perfect and beautiful he was.  I couldn't stop studying his face.  After maybe a half an hour the nurse came to take him back to the NICU and we were to follow her there so that we knew where he was.  This is where we left the birth mom and her mother and said our goodbyes.  We headed to the NICU not because he needed to be there for anything but just because they put him there because he couldn't be in the room with his birthmother and they didn't have a room for us.  It was fine with us.  He got a lot of attention there and the nurses were very helpful giving us all the information we needed and yet letting us care for him right away.  They nicknamed him Nick as he was so close to Christmas and he didn't have a name listed by his crib yet.  We told them his name is Logan Robert.  Robert is after my dad and Logan was a name we have always loved.  We spent the rest of the day at the hospital bonding with our little boy.  It was hard to leave him for the evening but they didn't like anyone to stay overnight in the NICU so we headed back to the hotel so we could return early the next morning.

We got there early on Friday and there was already talk of him being released soon.  By 12:30 we were leaving the hospital with a new tiny passenger in the backseat.  We wanted to stay in the area until the birth mom officially signed her paperwork which couldn't happen until 72 hours after he was born.  So we drove a little more south in IL to another hotel where we got to spend the evening as a family of three.  This was when we started calling our brothers and sisters.  It was so fun to share the news as I began with "we got our call from the agency that there is a baby for us" which was usually followed by crying and screams.  Then I would say "but the miracle is he is with us right now" and that was followed with disbelief and more screams.  It was truly a miracle...just two days ago we were still longing to be parents and now we had precious Logan with us.  God is great!!  We wanted Bill's mom who lives in St. Louis to get a chance to see Logan.  So she drove to us on Christmas eve (Bill's Birthday) and spent some time with us.  After a little more waiting and my palms sweating we got the call that the birth mom signed away her rights.  That is when the tears started flowing.  I knew up to this point anything could change and now with this call we were past that point.  He was ours and my emotions just poured out.

Now this is where the story becomes even uncanny.  So we were working with a national adoption agency which means there could have been a birthmother anywhere in the United States that could have picked us.  No matter what state the baby was born in the same rules would have applied- you would have to stay in the same state where the baby was born until you got clearance from the ICPC.  Except for Bill's mom down in St. Louis by us, the rest of our immediate family lives near Chicago, IL.  We wouldn't have to stay in a hotel for two weeks waiting, we could just head up north to our families for Christmas as we were planning on doing anyway but with an awesome present we didn't even know about a few days earlier.  It could not have worked out more perfectly.  We were already busting at the seams to share him with everyone and it was so wonderful that we didn't have to wait too long.  On the way up we started calling everyone!  We wanted to tell the world!  WE WERE TRAVELING WITH OUR NEW SON TO FAMILY FOR CHRISTMAS ON CHRISTMAS EVE!  Just writing that sentence still leaves me in awe at just how amazingly God had planned this for us.  It is just what Christmas is all about- the gift of Jesus into our life- and when I look at Logan that is just what I see, the presence of God in our life.  His plan for us was bigger than we could have ever imagined for ourselves.  Logan is truly our Christmas miracle sent to us from heaven.