So we met with the social worker, and after Avery telling her we planned to keep the baby in a cage, then showing her the dog crate, I figured that the only way to go was up. That totally happened, BTW. To the social worker's credit, she handled it pretty well.
We started with the basic interview. What age range are you interested in? More than one? What are your reasons for doing this? Are you willing to accept babies with x, y, or z? Then she asked about reservations. And I just couldn't stop talking. Seriously. It was as if a flood gate had opened. There is so much extra involved in this, and I just couldn't say with 100% certainty that this was what was right for my family, that I was Sure. Neither could C. In our relationship, I'm the one who would push us out of the plane, but C would make sure we didn't die. He's my finisher. In this process, I've been the one with the diligence and we've both been putting one foot in front of the other, but neither of us has been what I'd call the driving force. And neither of us could say with any conviction that this was 100% the right call. On the other hand, I can say with 100% certainty that I have no interest in being pregnant again. Which basically left us at, "Are you both sure you're ready to do this? Are you both sure that this is what you want?" Two hours of that later, she left with the promise to call next week after we had a chance to talk some things through.
I love the IDEA of fostering a baby and hopefully adopting. I follow adoption blogs and Instagrams and fantasize about my own babies. Sometimes my arms ache for a teeny person and it seems as if I'm missing a duckling in my row. On the other hand though, I haven't made the herculean efforts to complete paperwork, lock up everything, adjust the house, get all the documents ready that is required to become certified. Honestly, I think that if I was truly committed I would have put more steam behind this. Instead, we've been slowly tripping along all the while flip flopping between "do we?" and "don't we?"
It's so hard for me to admit that I may have gotten us this far only to turn around. There are SO MANY babies out there who need someone to love them and take care of them. And we could do it. If someone dropped a baby on my doorstep, I'd be all over that and we'd do an amazing job. On the other hand, if someone didn't drop a baby on my doorstep we'd be okay too. That's the rub. With each baby thus far, we've known that someone was missing from our family. Is it fair to get into this, to the baby(babies), to C, to Eli, Sydney, and Avery, if we're not able to say it with conviction? I'm incredibly conflicted because we can do hard things, but if we say no, then I'm choosing to NOT do hard things and saying that we aren't going to be that safe, healthy home that some baby might need. But I'm also saying yes to sleep, and adventures that aren't feasible with babies, and time with the bigs, and maybe a more authentic idea of what my life is turning into.
I am so, so sad. I'm sad that I may be done with babies and that I lost the last few months of lasts assuming that we weren't done. We may be five, albeit an awesome five. Averson most likely won't get to be a big sister. I picture myself with a baby strapped to my chest in the Ergo and I'm elated, but that seems like a very simplistic and unrealistic reason to consider adopting a baby. I'm sad because there aren't a lot of prospects for baby nieces or nephews, so my chances of loving on babies anytime soon are pretty slim. It's just really, really sad.
I feel like I'm grieving the loss of the potential, while knowing that next week or tomorrow or tonight we may flop back and decide that this was all cold feet. But I am more certain of my sadness than I have been in anything else during this process so I'm thinking this may be the certainty that I was looking for and that really sucks.
The specifics of my story are different-- going back and forth trying to decide if we want to have one more baby-- but there is a wonderful universal here in this post that I think all moms can relate to. It IS so sad to come to the end of babies, and the part about missing lasts really hits home for me. I am sure whatever choice you make will be the right one, but I know that doesn't make it feel any easier right now.
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