So, I’m now 17 weeks pregnant, and we’ve made the sonogram appointment to find out if we are having a boy or a girl. The appointment is December 21; until then you can cast your vote as to whether you think we are having a boy or a girl. Our house is divided: Elise says sister, Scott wants a boy, and I think I may lean towards boy. But who knows? In four weeks, the mystery will be revealed, but until then take a guess. And the obligatory belly shot (not much change but the baby is supposed to double in size in the next couple of weeks), even my youngest brothers want to see this…
These past couple months I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and reflecting. The pregnancy process is different than the adoption process. Now that I’m pregnant, co-workers, family members, strangers all have something to share. My mom had 7 children, and my sister and sister-in-law had babies last year. I also have a sister-in-law that is a first year OB/GYN resident, so there is a lot of experience and knowledge for me to draw from. Any question I have is answered. There is also the aspect of being able to share experiences. If a family member has been through pregnancy, they can share their experience and relate to yours. Then there’s the wait. As we wait nine months, we see physical changes in my body. Soon, as the baby grows the movements will get stronger. I go to the doctor every month and can hear the heartbeat. We have a wealth of information, and I’m happy to have this.
But when we were adopting, none of our family members had walked that process before us; our families had many of the same questions we did. Frankly, some of the time we were clueless. We used the wrong terms; I made a mistake on requesting our passports. (Don’t say you’re traveling in a year in a half if you need your passports in a couple months to further paperwork.) The list could go on. Couple that with an almost lack of information, and we were pretty clueless. The only thing that made sense was to rely on God. He knew who and where our baby was, and He knew when we would meet our baby. He also gave us Tapestry http://tapestry.irvingbible.org. Tapestry answered our questions, shared their experiences, and carried our burdens. They were there when we had to sign a risk waiver, when the agency suggested we switch to Bulgaria, when we ultimately were told there was no baby in Vietnam for us, and then rejoiced with us when we received the miracle of Elise’s referral. (Our family’s were apart of this too, but they experiencing for the first time as we were.) It was a tumultuous process, and we wouldn’t trade any part of it – especially not the part that made us parents, Elise.
So as I sit here with a growing belly, experiencing a more traditional passage to parenthood, I have already passed into parenthood. Some one already made a sacrifice, so that we could have the gift of Elise. The gift that says, “No mom, I like daddy,” or dances to the Rockettes during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, or wakes us up at 11:20 pm last night because she’s throwing up. The gift that is about to have to share the limelight with another (please pray for her; she has no idea what’s coming). So this Thanksgiving, we are thankful to be parents, and we are thankful that about 4 years ago we felt God calling us to adopt.