This post is the beginning of a series I am writing about adoption, how our family came to be a certified and waiting adoptive family, and what we have learned along the way. I hope to post weekly on this subject and look forward to comments and questions along the way!
We are ridiculously excited to see The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey when the movie comes out next week. The beloved Tolkien stories The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings were our companions on long car trips last year, and we spent many evenings gathered after dinner listening to my husband read the words aloud. It feels like a Christmas gift for our family to have the movie to look forward to during this season.
So many of our journeys in life begin like that of poor Bilbo. We plan for a nice quiet evening at home but are interrupted by a table filling up with dwarves eating our food and a wizard talking about things we would rather ignore.
Our unexpected journey down the road of adoption began in the busy waiting room of a large medical clinic. That day, I sat watching the door, waiting for the nurse to come out and tell me what I already knew. As I waited, I wrangled three kids, the oldest having just had shots in order to attend kindergarten, the two younger ones along for the ride in the double stroller. For some reason, the doctor who administered the shots thought it a good idea to give the kids blow up balls to play with. Now here sat in a full waiting room, trying to keep three kids under the age of five in some semblance of order but the balls were flying and my heart was racing and I sat there knowing in my heart what the nurse would come out and confirm: I was pregnant.
It was April of 2006. My youngest daughter was barely a year old. Her sister, two years older than her to the day, and their brother, a busy five year old on his way to kindergarten in the fall. I was tired, to the marrow of my bones tired and when the test came back positive I just stared at the nurse.
I walked out of the waiting room in a stupor, pushing the stroller into the elevator, managing the button pushing routine, winding our way out to the minivan, all the while in a kind of shock. Another baby? After having our third neither my husband nor myself felt we wanted to do anything permanent about birth control, so theoretically we were open to this new life. Still, the news hit me like a literal ton of bricks and I felt buried, feeling that I just couldn’t do it. And I stayed in that place a very long time.