Friday, August 6, 2010

What's Been Happening

Since I basically stopped blogging after trying to make it a goal to blog more this year I am know playing catch up. For me I've got to be in the right mood...

Let's review the family:

Chris, Megan, Lillaina, Charlotte, Gus, and Harley


Still loving his job. Working hard on obtaining his Bachelors Degree. He is only 10 classes away now! 2012! His classes start again in just a few short weeks. It has been a much needed break for him. He is just been enjoying NOT being in school and hanging out! He took charge of the pool chemicals. It apparently is very hard to do with a smaller pool. IDK...He almost pulled a Carl Griswald and chucked it into the neighbors yard one day!


I have been taking cake decorating classes. I think I am pretty darn good at it, if I do say so myself! Ever so slowly there is going to some great things happening in that direction! I did have one cake order but they backed out. I was bummed I will admit. But, I am focused on getting a fire lit slowly to keep it going, not be a flash in the pan. Stay tuned... I am hoping one day in the near future I will be able to ship some of my yummy things!


She is just growing by leaps and bounds! My goodness! She can't wait for her school to start. She doesn't start until the end of October, so we still have a little time. Right now she is obsessed with Hula Girls, and Hawaii! She is writing her full first name. I love that she calls it her 'big girl name'. Everything for is a 'big girl' thing. A whole banana is a 'big girl banana', a hard boiled egg that she gets to pick is a 'big girl egg'. She loves her baby dolls. Princess Tiana is her favorite. She loves that her skin matches Tiana. In fact that is the major driving force for Chris and I to keep the Disney trip. That is a whole other post! Lily has been asking tons of questions about everything. She just wants to know everything about everything. How something works, why it works, why wouldn't work and on and on and on! She is very interested in Jesus, heaven, and death. She recently told me she was sad because her Daddy went to Jesus... ???!!! Was my response. Then she said something about him not dying, but that he works for Jesus. You should have seen Chris' face when I told him THAT story! She has been having a little trouble always telling the truth. We are working with her on that. Oh this is a funny...she wants to be a dragon for Halloween! She could totally pull it off! She is turning right into a little girl!


Where did my baby go?! In less then 2 months she will turn 3! That is just unbelievable!Around this time every year I start thinking about her birthday. One day she wants Cinderella, then the next 'I cannot like Cinderella, I want Alice in Wonderland'. It is not a big deal at all it is more funny to see what she wants everyday! We are still working on her potty training. I refuse to stress over it. I stressed over Lily training and it backfired on me and stressed her out. I just keep telling myself she won't be in a pull-up in her wedding dress! Charlotte is sooo full of spunk. She loves to play dress up. In the course of one day she will in at least 3 different levels of dressed naked all the way up to full ball gown and 'diamonds'! We are going to talk to her doctor in October about her maybe being color blind. She is struggling with them. Chris is red and green color blind, these are the colors she has the most problems with. No harm in asking... Her favorite food is cheese. Chris and I were in a Lenox outlet and got the best giggle when we saw a cheese plate!

The girls in general are best friends. Look up the odd couple and there they are. Charlotte loves pok-a-dots, Lily strips. I plan to write about this later, but no matter how different they are, the closer it makes them. They love to go on adventures together to recue each other. Lily asked me if she could marry Charlotte. I told her she couldn't because she was her sister. She said 'ohhh ok, I just love her so much'. I melted right into a puddle!

Gus (AKA Butters)-

Our oldest fur baby! He is doing so much better. He had gotten out of the yard in June and messed up the pads on his paws. We had a round of antibiotics and pain meds. It was pretty sad. He seems to be back to normal! It has been almost a year since we lost Beanie and Gus has never looked better then he has these past few months with Harley. Making him happy was a top priority and I think we have finally gotten there.

Harley (AKA Lunch meat!)

He is our newest addition. He came to us through a friend at Chris' work. His daughter has a degenerative condition and wasn't able to keep him. When Chris first asked me about a boxer, NO WAY! Was my first response. But for whatever reason my heart softened and Harley came home. He is hands down the sweetest dog... well next to Gus! He is a good fit for us and as a buddy for Gus. He is like a big baby!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

A Lost Boy Found

When we started out on our journey for our family we had NO clue what an up hill battle we were about to endure. Five LONG years of trying on our own, procedures, blood work, medications all led to a monthly reminder that we still weren't pregnant. As corny as this is about to sound it all changed on a family vacation to Disney World. One night at the steps of Cinderella's castle during the fireworks we made a wish, well more like a statement of fact. The next time we would hear that music we would have our children with us. Chris and I spent a LONG time just walking and talking during that trip about what would be our next steps. We had three choices, well really two because we were not, not going to have children. We could either go through IVF (our next step medically), or we could adopt. Just because I listed adoption second for our choices doesn't mean that it was a last option, it was just another one. By the time we made it home from that trip the decision had been made. We didn't tell a soul.

We came back from that trip late November/early December 2004. We worked out tails off to pay down some of the stupid debt that we had, so that when the time was right we would be in the best possible standings. The fork in our road was one that would be costly no matter which we choose. Between the legal fees paid to an attorney to guide us through an adoption, or to the doctors who would guide us through an IVF. Bottom line, we were young (26) and were just starting out on careers. The money would have to come from somewhere, and we decided that when it was time we would try to take it out of our home. We didn't want to more forward until the money was secured in full. In April 2005 we signed the paperwork that would take us on the one of the wildest rides of our lives!

During the in between time we spent a lot of it looking at agencies. One afternoon we stumbled upon the website of the Adoption Agency we would later choose to use. At first when Chris and I talked about where we would adopt from we looked into the laws for a domestic adoption and decided that it wasn't a right fit for us. Then we thought about Russia, that country was a front runner for a while. The day we found our agency and saw those beautiful brown eyed babies, long story short we were in love!

May 5, 2005 - It is easy for me to never forget that exact day. We met with our Adoption Agency for the very first time. I don't think Chris and I (up until that point) had ever been more nervous. These people were going to tear us down to nothing and look for the one thing to deny us- or so we thought. It was VERY overwhelming and I don't remember much of it other then the large pile of papers were going to have to provide them. We got started right away!

May 18, 2005 in Guatemala City, a baby born was born.

We spent most of the summer gutting our house to make it perfect and safe for our new baby. We were inspected by the health department, fire department, we had been finger printed background checked, medically cleared, our family/neighbors and friends were asked to write letters to recommend us, we had to write out our Wills, you name it we did it. The final hurdle was the home visit. This is also when my interview happened. I remember throwing dog toys strategically around our living room so it look 'lived in'! When I was done she went across the street to our neighbors ( who have known me since I was 8 years old!) to make sure we didn't come home drunk or have too many random 'visitors'. In the end we passed with flying colors!

Sometime around the end of May the little baby boy who was born on May 18th showed up on our agencies photo listing. Side note, Chris and I never asked for a girl or a boy. We thought that since we would get a choice biologically why should we pick and choose now. We wanted a baby.

Close to the end of August we were just about cleared through the paperwork when Chris and I talked one night about this baby boy, who, after so many months was still on the photo listing. I remember asking Chris if he thought he was just waiting on us. We took a few more days to think about it and finally August 30, 2005 Chris called to ask. We were both at work, Chris called and I knew to go to the back Doctors office to talk. We had him! We were parents! I floated through the rest of the day. Later that night Chris' parents came over for a late birthday dinner for his Dad. One of his presents was showing him the picture of his soon-to-be Grandson. I wanted to tell all the Grandparents face to face so I kept my mouth shut to my Mom and lied when I told her we did call but he was already placed with another family. Just so we could make it to the weekend to ride down to tell them face to face.

In November we finished off the nursery. It was Winnie the Pooh from the ceiling to the floor. It was beautiful. Chris and I spent a lot of time in there talking, we liked being in there.

The next few months dragged by. We had an update here or there but we were moving at a snails pace. We made it through all the holidays by the skin of my teeth. Month after month passing with no real progress. Little did we know that was a HUGE BEAMING red flag.

Fast forward to January 18, 2006 - Chris' birthday. I had arranged for a singing telegram monkey to go to his work that afternoon. My boss knew I was leaving early, his boss knew what was coming. It was going to be an awesome birthday. I called in that morning to our agency to get a update. Thinking there may have been some movement and I would have happy news to tell him. I had to leave a message for our coordinator. She called back about 30 min's later. Even typing this now four and a half years later I can remember exactly what was said...

Agency: Hi Megan I am returning your call we do have news
Me: Great! What's going on?
A: Can you and Chris come into the office this afternoon? (I remember her voice was sooo quiet)
M: (knowing this is not good at all) What is going on?
A: We really need you guys to come in...
M: (my heart was beating so fast- the up in your throat thumping in you ears kind) WHY?! What is wrong? He isn't coming home is he...
A: I am so sorry....
M: (my heart literally shattered and I couldn't speak anymore I just let out squeaks)
A: Can you guys come in at 2?
M: Squeak
A: OK we will see you then
M: Squeak

I know looking at the words from the agency it seems as if they were cold about it. That is the farthest from the truth. She was quiet and respectful of the fact that my ability to breathe and speak were gone.

By the time I had hung up with the agency I had cuddled myself into a little ball in the corner of my desk, trying desperately to not bring attention to myself in front of a room full of patients. I found my way back to an empty office and started trying to get a hold of Chris, who was out at his birthday lunch at work. By now co-workers who had seen me take off gasping for air and red faced found me. My boss finally got a hold of Chris and tells him she doesn't know what is going on (I am still not forming full works other then gone and Matthew) but something was wrong with the adoption. Now, he had an idea I was planning something for his birthday but didn't have a clue as of what. So he thought for a split second 'this is a joke right?!' my boss assured him that something was indeed very wrong and he needed to come home. My boss and a co-worker drove me home.

I came in the house and just stood in the silence... this was a bad dream it was all a bad dream. After a minute I called my Mom. She couldn't make out a word I was saying, later she told me she thought I said Chris had died at first. I was able to get out what I knew which wasn't much. When Chris made it home we left albeit extremely early to go to the office.

We got there and were never given a straight answer of what had happened other then the adoption would not proceed and he hadn't died. The days following were the saddest we have ever lived through.

Four and a half years later we have his picture on our wall with our girls. He is the baby that made us parents for those 7 short months. There isn't a time I don't wonder about him, where he is, what he is doing, and prayed that he was safe. After Charlotte was born I had terrible PPD which only made his loss more painful when I looked at my beautiful girls.

Last night I found him again. I was searching for something for Lily and I stumbled upon a website to sponsor children from around the world. These are the times in my life God (or whatever greater being there is) shows themselves to me. A thought had popped in my head about sponsoring a child a few weeks ago. I hadn't told Chris because I knew it wasn't in the budget after last month. So I just sat on it. Last night I just started looking through the site and I saw that you could type in the child's birthday and current age, as well as country. I typed in all his info and up he popped! There wasn't a doubt in my mind. I called for Chris to come look and he to knew it was him. The name listed isn't the one that we knew as his birth name, it is our last name Henry. We decided that today at nap time I would call into speak with someone about what we found and see how much more info we could find out.

I told my story to this stranger on the phone who was wonderful and she said she had never had this happen before. The problem was the way their website is set up I couldn't find him again. She assured me this wasn't a problem and that their tech support could help me. Well, after spending time with the tech guy he also couldn't find him. He told me that someone else may have already chosen to sponsor him and that is why they couldn't find him in the listing. He told to watch the site and if he were to pop back up again to call, and they would grab it for me.

I hung up feeling completely defeated. I called Chris at work and filled him in. We both started searching the site and then it just popped into my mind to check my Internet history. I never do that! I found him! They couldn't see him because he was still sitting in my cart in my history. Our little boy lost was found again.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Double Kisses

Lily has been asking a TON of questions about her birth mom. She calls her Guatemala Mommy. I am completely not threaten by her questions and I let them come out naturally. Funny though they always seem to come up during lunchtime.... sometimes while we are snuggling but mostly at lunch. She understands a lot of what happened during the process to bring her home-on a 4 year old level.

Today though the way she was retelling it to me took me aback. She said 'You wanted a baby of your own and you couldn't have one. Then you found me.' Most people not in the world wouldn't understand why that one word stood out, but it did like an elephant in an ant hill. I told her that was, in fact, my child and that God knew how badly we wanted a baby and how badly her Guatemala Mommy wanted her to have a great life. That God put us together. That made her smile. She kept talking about how much she misses her Guatemala Mommy, but that she doesn't want to leave me. She has a huge issues with 'her family' being taken away. She has nightmares about us (namely me) being taken away. We use reassuring language when this comes up. There is true anxiety about this for her. But it doesn't show itself in separation. She loves to go to school, go with Chris to the store without me. She even prefers Chris to me (look up Daddy's girl and there she is!). She will spend time with her Grands.

I thought we were doing to the right thing by making adoption a non-issue. Trying to make it a part of who she is not all that she is. She has been talking about wanting to visit her Guatemala Mommy. I told her that she could go anytime she wanted, but we needed to wait until she was a little older. She said she wanted to show her how good she was getting at her letters, and writing her name. I always tell her that I know she would be over the moon proud of her just like I am. I make sure I tell her that I know she loved her sooo much and wanted the very best for her. We have the picture that was taken of the two of them at the DNA appointment hanging in our living room. Am I reading to much into this? Should we search for her? Should we not? Would this good for Lily or not? I have NO clue... Why does being a parent NOT come with a manual?!

The sweet thing she said one day as we were talking about whom was who's parent (Mom-Mom is Momma's Mommy; Grandpa is Daddy's Daddy etc) Lily said 'my Mommy is my Guatemala Mommy.' My heart stopped, then that sweet baby said 'but you are my Momma'. I admit the corners of my eyes had the burn going on.

Lily, when you are reading this in 15 years... Momma is trying so hard to do this right for you! There was a song that I found when we were waiting for you called From Gods Arms To My Arms To Yours. It is from the prospective of the birth mom. The part that stuck in my mind is where she asks for the parents to kiss him for her. Every special thing in your life, sometimes just because I make sure I take that second and give you double kisses and how I wish with all my might that your Guatemala Mommy could know what was happening at that very moment.