Sunday, September 23, 2012

December 2009: Post-placement

CJ shared this on Facebook. She found it on an Open Adoption support page. CJ commented that it was "perfectly worded". I believe this is exactly how my daughter felt after placement, and still feels today:

People want me to regret.
I don't
People want me to feel guilty for not regretting
I don't
People want me to wish I hadn't placed her
I don't
People want me to say I was talked into it
I wasn't

People want me to say I didn't have enough support
But I did
People want me to say that a child is always better off with their "natural" mother.
But I know that is not always true
People want to say that grief means regret
I beg to differ
People talk about not wanting the child, or not wanting to parent
I know the words "want to" and "able to" are not the same thing

After the placement, we were all a little dazed, and emotionally exhausted. The Awesomes stayed in our state for a few days, and they were happy to let CJ, and any of our family, see Angel. Two days after placement Hubby and I drove with CJ the 30 minutes to where they were staying at a family member's house. When we got there Mrs. Awesome was very happy to let us hold Angel and she encouraged CJ to change her and even give her a bath. She didn't seem to be a bit bothered. What an amazing lady! I was worried for CJ though, that this was going to make it harder on her when they took Angel home and she couldn't see her very often. CJ knew this, but still wanted to see her. 

The Awesomes were going to drive home. About the same time, our family was leaving to drive four hours to see my mother-in-law, who had recently had a stroke. We asked them if they would consider going out of their way, to come to where my MIL was in a rehab center, and let her and my FIL see and meet Angel. They were so sweet to agree to do that. CJ rode with them in their car on the way down, taking care of Angel in the back seat. When we got to the rehab center, it was a very tender scene. One I'll never forget. My MIL had lost her ability to speak, because of the stroke. She had been pretty non-responsive until we showed up with the baby, then she became alert and kept touching her and stroking her hair and staring at her. She was even able to hold her. She couldn't speak her feelings, but we could all read them. All of our hearts were touched. My FIL was thrilled to meet Angel, too. My MIL passed away 2 1/2 months later. We were so happy that she got to see her great-granddaughter before she died. I am so grateful to The Awesomes for being willing to go out of their way, and add an extra day or more to their trip, to make that possible. 

The Awesomes spent the night with us at the little house we were staying in. The next day they were supposed to leave early in the day, but they ended up staying so that CJ could take Angel to visit some of her friends in the area. They stayed while CJ, and all of us, held Angel and took more pictures. They were so patient! It was after dark before they finally left to head home. It was hard to see them leave, but we knew it wasn't the end.

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