The life and death of my son, Easton, have brought about so many incredible changes in my life. Some are excruciatingly painful, while others are indescribably beautiful. Without a doubt, our latest endeavor has been the most transforming. My husband and I are in the beginning stages of expanding our family through international adoption from Haiti.
The process could be very slow, and possibly painful. It will be full of twists and turns that we can't possibly foresee. There will likely be times when we're exhausted and defeated. But as I thought through all of these scenarios, I wondered who would be more fitting for such and adventure than people who are already quite aware of the uncertainty of life? Who is better suited to accept moments of defeat and sorrow? That fact was solidified by my ten year old daughter one day as we discussed the possibility of adoption...
"Guys, are you going to be ok with adding another sibling to our family?"
Logan: "Mom! Why do you keep asking us?? We're really excited. It will be fine!"
"I ask because you are my family and your opinion matters. This may not be easy. We may take all the right steps and fall in love with someone we don't yet know, and then it may not even happen just because of silly laws."
Addison: "Well, Mom, I'm pretty sure that if anyone can handle it when things don't turn our like they should, it's us!"
Next, I worried about the financial aspects (as does my husband). But, of course we do! Who wouldn't! This isn't a cheap process. But then I thought about the other things we could do with the money we'd be using, and you know what? I couldn't think of anything more important. Nothing resonates with my soul like this next step in our family life. I attribute that to my son, of course. And while I worried over this particular aspect, in the background of my life, my family and friends were rallying once again. I've been completely and utterly blown away by the sacrifice and generosity of our community, our family. I feel so privileged to get a front seat to such love.
I've also been struck by the amazing similarities between adoption and pregnancy. I feel like I'm in that first trimester of feeling both exhilarated at the prospect of new life in my home, and the fear of the unknown. It's so eerily similar to my pregnancies, and it makes it all the more special. No, I won't feel them move within my body. I won't feel the pain on contractions as I prepare to meet them, and I won't bear the scar that says they once lived here. But, the ache in my heart that will remain until the day they're in my arms will rival any contraction. The emptiness of my arms will warrant soothing, and I'm pretty sure at some point during this process I'm going to be requesting a sort of "long-distance epidural". But, what an adventure it will be. What an incredible "birth story". Thank you for believing in our family. Thank you for the many ways in which you support us. And thank you for loving us for the sake of loving. E would be so proud.