Two days before “K” left, I found myself feeling sick. My stomach hurt, my head hurt, and I just didn’t feel right. I quickly chalked it up to the stress of putting her back on a plane, and the insanity of a month-long adventure that left me feeling run down and overwhelmed.
Just to be sure, though, I bought a pregnancy test to see if there was anything…bigger going on.
I tossed the stick in the garbage can and moved on, perfectly content with the knowledge that I was likely a little over-stressed. But there was this nagging thought in the back of my mind that kept rolling around, pushing it’s way out at night when the room got dark and the world quieted.
What if the test was wrong?
For years now (and by years, I mean yeeeaaarrrrssss) I’ve felt completely certain that our family was incomplete. The feeling was so strong that some days I would pull out of the driveway and look frantically in the back seat to see who I’d left behind. I’d look at photographs and feel so certain that someone was missing from them.
I knew the day I brought Landon home from the hospital that he would not be my last child. I just knew it. I was certain at the time, however, that I would not give birth to another child. So certain that I gave away all the baby stuff I owned except for the infant carrier and the crib because sentimentality wouldn’t give me permission to let go.
I was wrong.
It’s no secret that my heart lies firmly with adoption, and my first choice would have been to further expand out family in that way. But for reasons I don’t fully understand, God had a different plan.
And don’t think for a single second that I haven’t mulled over the irony of the fact that we conceived a child while hosting a Ukrainian teenager in our home. I’m fairly certain God chuckled to Himself as He knit that one into the tapestry.
After we put “K” on her plane, the feeling that something was up intensified. It was a combination of feeling queasy and exhausted, so I decided to check just one more time for peace of mind. Lee went to church that Sunday morning without me, and I ran to the store, picked up the cheapest test I could find, and came home. After I took the test, I started cleaning, and…well, I forgot about it.
I was so certain it would be negative again.
I was wrong. (I mentioned that already, right?)
That was nearly a month ago, and in these last few weeks Lee and I have slowly adjusted to this new development. It’s not that I didn’t want this, because there was a part of me that always liked the idea of having just one more.
There was another part of me, though, that didn’t really want to start from square one. And there is was a HUGE part of me that did not want to go through another pregnancy. Some women love pregnancy – I am not one of them.
So yes, the part of me that liked the idea of having a baby is excited. The part of me that longs to adopt is disappointed. These are conflicting emotions that will need to be worked through. I don’t doubt God’s plan for our family one bit.
I also don’t think that He’s done leading us down the path of orphan care. I don’t know what form that will take now, but I know this:
I am open to anything.
When we started our adoption journey, we did so on a very safe path. We wanted a child as young as possible, with as few issues as possible. It was what we felt we could handle. Now?
I wouldn’t say no to anything anymore. This is a freeing place to be, honestly. I am so open to whatever path the Lord leads us down, whether that be raising awareness, working with a ministry, taking trips to serve children in need, hosting orphans, fostering, adopting older or younger or special needs. Nothing scares me.
I feel free.
I also feel pregnant. For the time being, this is our path. We will continue to raise the children that the Lord has blessed us with joyfully and gratefully, and with all the wisdom that He chooses to reign down on us. And who knows? Maybe I’ll have the privilege of being an adoptive grandmother someday. Wouldn’t that be grand…
So that’s the story of where we are now. Life is full of surprises, isn’t it?!
(Come back tomorrow and I’ll share a bit of how our kids reacted to the news. I will also share my observations on pregnancy after having a loooooong break in between babies. Did you know at 35 I am considered of “mature maternal age?” HUMPH…)