In the car on the way to the hospital our social worker phoned to see how we were doing. I broke down sobbing in tears...I think it was obvious how we were doing. We'd been crying on and off all morning. You have to understand...Josina's birth family are very good people and this was extremely painful for them. This was going to be the hardest day of our lives. Yes we were going to become parents, but as adoptive parents you have to go through this part to get to the good stuff. I prayed to God that morning that he would make me feel the pain and suffering that the family was going through. It was the least I could do.
At the hospital our social worker had not yet arrived so we waited at the Tim Hortons for her. When she arrived she told us to wait here for her until she calls. She went up to the hospital room for what seemed like an eternity. Sitting at the table, all I could think of, with butterflies in my stomach, was that it wasn't going to happen. We were waiting so long because the adoption wasn't going to go through. In fact the opposite was happening...they were taking the time to say goodbye to Josina, to grieve this loss.
Then my cell phone rang and it was time to go up. That was the longest and most nerve-wracking walk I've ever taken. As we entered the maternity ward our steps became smaller and smaller, we walked slower and slower. Closer and closer we walked to the door to the hospital room...at one point my husband stopped in the hall, his feet would not carry him any further. We were sobbing and in tears before even entering the room. As I entered, sobbing, I saw Marcia sitting on the hospital bed with Josina in her arms...2 braids in her hair, looking radiant and yet so sad. She was looking down at Josina (which she did for the entire ceremony). Her mom, dad, sister, and brothers were sitting around her on the bed and in chairs. I skooched over to a corner, standing in front of the family with tears streaming down my face. We were all bawling. Our social worker said a prayer, read some scripture and then I had the opportunity to read my letter to Marcia. Again, she looked at Josina the entire time, never taking her eyes off her. Everyone had the opportunity to say a few words if they felt like it. I can't even begin to tell you how important that was to us. Marcia, such an amazing young woman, told us she couldn't believe our profile had never been chosen (it had been shown numerous times, just never chosen) but that she is glad that we were never chosen because that meant she got to choose us. We are the perfect family for her baby. This amazes me to this day!
After hugging each other, Sid and I left the room to let the family say their last goodbyes. We waited down the hall in a lounge until our social worker came and said it was time. As we walked back into the room where Josina was waiting for us we noticed that her hospital basinette had been decorated with gifts for Josina, so nicely displayed. Ok...this still gets me to this day. Her family says good bye to her...they are letting us raise her...the most precious gift I will ever receive...and in the midst of their greatest pain they take the time to decorate her basinette and shower her with gifts...I told you they are an amazing family! They love her so much!
So now the tears need to be put away, we have a big responsibility now. We are parents! It was time to be happy. We took this picture to celebrate our new daughter:
The weather outside was cold and snowy and we were anxious to get home soon as we had a 3 hour drive to make. Unfortunately we had to wait for the doctor to complete the final medical on Josina before releasing her. Well, it took 3 hours for the doctor to show up...not fun. While waiting, a nurse spent some time with us to educate us on bathing, etc. (thankfully we had taken an infant care class 2 nights before Josina was born, lol). Finally she was given a clean bill of health and it was time to go. After putting her in the car seat and getting the nurse to check that we had Josina strapped in properly (we didn't) we started walking down the hallway with our daughter...the same hallway that hours before we couldn't even walk down. As we walked further and further towards the exit I kept looking back to see if someone was going to stop us. They're actually letting us leave with her? I told Sid to walk faster before someone stops us. It reminded me of the Ikea commercial...you know..."start the car...start the car".
The drive home was fairly uneventful, long, but uneventful. After such an emotional weekend it was so good to be home. Our good friends and neighbours came over to ooh and awe over our gorgeous little baby. They brought an "its a girl" balloon and some gerbera daisies (my fave) and took some pics of us with her...I think she's going to have a problem with her eyesight with so many flashes going off in her eyes at such a young age, lol.
We didn't get much sleep that night (or for the next zillion nights, lol, for that matter) but were so proud to be her parents (still are).
The next few days after this are a blur. All I can remember is that Sid and I both cried and were so sad for Josina's birth mom and her family. We cried at the drop of a hat so many times.
We had 10 days to wait to see if Josina would remain with us or if Marcia would decide to parent. The 10 days passed successfully and that's when I first posted about her arrival (see posting entitled "Surprise"). Now 3 months later you can see that Josie is growing like a weed and very happy with us. We feel so blessed to be her adoptive parents because we were made to wait so long to become parents and we never take her for granted. She is such a precious gift. I love her more than I can put into words.