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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Filled with Wonder

Whenever my little buddy wakes up from a nap (usually) he is smiling. 

As I lift him out of his crib his eyes catch the three Chinese lanterns hanging from the ceiling.  He can't stop staring!  It is so fascinating.

We walk over to the wall where his shelves are and I turn of his electric heater.  While we're standing there, he looks in complete amazement and wonder at the toys on the shelves - nothing special, just a few piggy banks, books and stuffed animals.  But to him, they are the coolest things in the world right now.  He has this look of, "I can't believe this is my stuff!"

Every time I walk into his room to get him out of bed, I do the same thing, too.  My eyes are filled with wonder and amazement, thinking "I can't believe this is mine..." 

I hope he knows I'm having those same feelings too...but about him.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

She Called Me Mom

Yesterday went great.  Thank you for all your well wishes and prayers.  We loosely made plans to get together again when the weather is warmer and the kids can play outside.  J said there is a great park nearby.

As I suspected, there weren't any really emotional moments.  I think both J and I are better at expressing our feelings through letters and emails rather than face to face.  I know I could be assuming that on her part, but that's just my experience from these two visits now.

Levi has a birth-sister who is 3.  She was super excited to see the baby, and it was very endearing that she called him her "baby brother."  I know right now in her little toddler world it doesn't seem strange that her baby brother lives somewhere else.  As time passes, and the two little kiddos grow up, I hope they can become friends and good playmates.  I know J is doing a great job of trying to explain things to Levi's birth-sister.  She was giving Levi lots of hugs, kisses, helped give him a bottle, took lots of pictures with my camera, and read him books.  She said, "My baby brother is my best friend!"

At one point, Levi got fussy, and J was holding him.  She said, "Here, I'll give you back to your mom for a little bit."  It was a bittersweet moment, but I appreciated the affirmation.

Levi's birth-grandma (J's mom) also joined us.  He got so many hugs and kisses yesterday.  This kid is LOVED!

For privacy reasons, I'm not going to put up any pictures of the day, except this one (you can't see any faces, don't worry).  Levi's birth-mom is holding him and his birth-sister is giving him hugs and kisses before we left!  I almost forgot to mention - Levi is a spitting image of his big sister!!  They have identical hair & eyes (color/shape).

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

7th Heaven

I have a super busy day today, so this will be quick!

Last week, in addition to celebrating his Irish heritage (so I'm told), Levi also turned 7 months old.  Not a lot has changed in the last month...he's a stellar sitter, and is starting to figure out how to go from sitting to his hand and knees (uh-oh!).  If I put him on his hands and knees, he can stay they and rock for a while. 


Levi has two front bottom teeth.  They don't seem to bother him too much. (Thank you, Jesus!) He eats at 8am, 12pm, 4pm, and 8pm.  He eats formula at each feeding, and a cereal, fruit, and veggie (once a day for each with a bottle). 

We're still working on the nap situation.  Some days are wonderful with 3 one hour naps, or 2 two hour naps, but some days, it's 1 one hour nap and that's it.  I am reading a somewhat controversial book right now, but am hoping it gives me advice on that situation.




Levi still loves being in public and seeing what is going on everywhere.  He will let anyone hold him, but when he’s sleepy or fussy, he’s begun reaching for mom.  (Be still my heart!!!) He is full of smiles and laughs, and is even laughing now at things that don’t include being tickled, such as making a funny face at him. 

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Groveling Fool Says Thanks

About a year ago I wrote an "open letter" to the one who would eventually be our birth mother.  The one who would hold the ability to make us a family in her hands womb.  Tomorrow, for the first time since the pre-birth meeting we will meet up with Levi's first mom.  I am excited to see her again and am really happy that she has been the one to initiate contact and maintaining a relationship with us.

In the last five months we have sent pictures, but not really any personal letters. I wanted to leave the ball in their court to see who was comfortable with what. I know what open adoption "should" look like, and I have read/seen how wonderful it can be (if you haven't before, you should check out this amazing story), but I know each family is different.

So then, about two months ago, J, Levi's birth mom wrote us a wonderful letter that I can't wait to share with him when he's older. When I wrote back, I felt overwhelmed with the lack of ability to say, "Thanks for the baby." I channeled my inner "groveling fool," and just poured out my heart.

Long before I met you, or knew about Levi, I have thought about this letter. What in the world could I possibly say to the person who has single handedly changed my entire life? There are not enough words to express “thank you” laced with “I can’t imagine what you had to go through.”


I guess I will stick to what I know. I know you are a great mom and a beautiful person. I know you are selfless and thoughtful. I know things probably haven’t turned out the way you expected them to when you were a little girl. I know that the intuitiveness, attentiveness, contentment, and intelligence that Levi already demonstrates is from you. I know that without you, we would not be a family.


I am grateful that you want to be a part of Levi’s life, and that you appreciate his updates and pictures. As he grows, I will gladly tell him about his first family and the sacrifices that were made.


I’m not sure if I ever told you this, but last summer we began praying to have a baby born before I went back to school. I know Levi was the answer to that prayer. All the nights spent crying myself to sleep with arms that ached for a baby have been redeemed watching him sleep peacefully, arms behind his head. The social situations where other people’s families made me sad for one of my own are now replaced with us asking for “two and a high chair” when we go out to eat.


Above Levi’s crib is this verse from 1 Samuel: “For this child I have prayed, and the Lord has granted my desire.” When I hung the quote there, I had no idea how our adoption story would turn out, but I knew I could trust God with my hopes and desires. I am happy to say God has fulfilled those dreams with a greater love and more perfect child than I imagined was possible. Thank you for making that a reality for us.

I'm praying that tomorrow we have a good time together, Levi is on his cutest behavior, and that this is the first of many get-togethers.  Isn't open adoption crazy-amazing?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Some May Say "Lucky"

...but I prefer BLESSED.

Levi's shirt says, "Sham-Rockin'."

Happy St. Patty's Day!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Resignation

This week I cut the cord, closed the door, put a nail in the coffin...at least for now.  I officially resigned from my teaching job.  Probably not a big surprise to anyone, as this has been my goal.

The process of actually writing the official letter was so much more bittersweet than I expected it to be.  I mean, as soon as I got the "baby bug" I was mentally done with teaching, so these emotions caught me off gaurd. 

When I look back on my "adulthood," it seems to move in 4 years cycles....high school, college, teaching.  Each chapter closing was emotional, yet I was so ready to move on to the next phase of life.

I guess what I am saying is I am grateful for the years I had in the classroom, especially for the lessons I learned about myself and children which will come in handy in my new career as a domestic engineer.

 Also, I want to acknowlegde how incredibly blessed I am to have a husband who finds it so important for me to spend my days with our son.  And how wonderful my God is for providing us with a way to actually make it happen.

Once again...if God puts a desire in your heart, he is going to see it through!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Levi's Debut on Another Blog!

I have been such a bad blogger!  I have a few posts coming up about how adoptions are like kidney transplants, and I think I'm going to write a more personal one addressing the topic of birth families. 

For now, hop on over to Suzy's blog.  She's a very talented crafter and awesome friend, and she featured our little love bug in one of her recent ventures.  I actually cried a little when I saw it!

Scrap with Suzy

Have a great weekend!!