Monthly Archives: November 2007

Will She Survive Toddlerhood?

By “she” I mean “me,” by the way!  The past few weeks have been a little tough for me.  At 20 months, Woob is of course, smart, active, independent, curious, and fast.  Those are GOOD things, right?  And most often, he uses these powers for good, not evil.  But then there’s the REST of the time… 

I am having a little difficulty not taking it personally.  I often have to step back and remind myself that this is not about me (or is it?). Every morning and every evening, we battle about the carseat. That is, I try to put the baby in the carseat and he battles me about it.  Violently.  He wants to ride in the truck.  I drive the car.  I drive to daycare.  I pick up.  The car has the better carseat.  Every morning before work and every evening after work, I am a puddle of sweat on the car floor from fighting to get the child in.  The crying starts as we approach the car and rises up to a crescendo as soon as the door is opened.  This morning I put the little booger in time out to give myself a break as well, and he calmed down immediately, but as soon as we approached the car again, it began again.  So tired.  So late for work.  When I drop him off, he gets angry when I go to help him off with his coat.  He hugs the other mommies dropping off, but pushes me away. ~Sigh~. 

Now, I’m usually very rational and understand that this kind of thing is developmentally appropriate for a kid this age.  That kids battle with parents and parents bug the heck out of kids.  In my head I get that.  But my heart hurts every time.  And this will be just the beginning, I know.  We have many conflicts ahead, and over far more important things than riding in the car versus the truck.   

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Filed under adoption, motherhood, toddler safety

The Novelty has Worn Off, Apparently

Best Laid Plans‘ most recent post rang a familiar bell for me this morning as I read.  Being in “baby limbo” just needing, wanting to know SOMETHING, ANYTHING during those weeks before baby comes does tend to make a potential mother go a bit bonkers.  Add in the fact that every person in your whole life is asking you “have you heard anything?” just makes you want to HURT PEOPLE.  I’ve lived it. 

Funny, looking back on our wait, we were bombarded with question after question about the woman who chose us.  People were SO interested…and just plain nosey:  “Is she healthy?  Does she know who the father is?  What does she look like? How old is she?  Is she in school?  Where does she live?  What’s she like?  Is she in school?  Does she have other kids?  What’s her family like?”  And on and on and on.  They wanted to know every little detail, and wanted updates on demand.  It was maddening.  But we worked our way through it and survived it, arriving generally unscathed on the other side.

My, how things have changed since then!  The same people who had a desperate desire to know all N.’s business before the placement, seem to have an equally strong inclination to avoid the topic of her existence now, almost two years later.  Since she’s a part of Woob’s life, I tend to talk about her–not incessantly, but enought that people know what’s going on, and that she’s “around” and importantly, that she’s expecting.  I want Woob to be able to grow up talking about his sister without others telling him he doesn’t have one, you know?  And now N. is experiencing some problems with the pregnancy, hopefully that can be kept in check until its safe for Newbaby to come out, and when I bring such things up, NO ONE is asking for details.  They don’t want to know about her health, they don’t want to know that she’s still in school, they don’t want to know where she’s living, they don’t want to know what her current family situation is, and they don’t really want to know about this new baby.  I’m met with just silence.  I bet they’d become interested if she suddenly asked us to parent, but that’s not likely. 

I’m at a loss, really I am.

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To Look Into the Eyes of a Woobie

I was just reading Thanksgivingmom’s post about A’s Eyes and how they reflect her own.  I almost responded there, but thought I’d just put a post here (especially, since I’m waiting for a State auditor to come today who didn’t give me a time and I’ve been killing time waiting for her ALL MORNING so I was able to work this in!).  But, as usual, I digress.

Back to Woobie’s eyes and such.  I think that it is such a natural thing to look at your baby when first born, even when not born to you, and look for those similarities that connect them to you.  When Woob was born, before we ever even met him officially and up close, we saw him through the glass and across the room, in all his naked, squalling, red and blotchy glory, and I felt immediately that I KNEW this child.  I recognized him.  I don’t know if that happens to all adoptive parents or not.  It wasn’t the immediate rush of love that I expected, but something even more familiar.  It was recognition.  It caught me off guard.  Then, as we were able to come closer and actually gaze down at him, we were able to see the little cleft in his chin and remark how my maternal grandfather, if he were still living, would somehow claim that chin as it looks so much like his own did.  Of course, we know that the cleft comes from Woob’s own maternal grandfather, and think that’s very cool.  Granpa G. thinks so, too.  Looking into his eyes we found that bright blue peeking back at us and often wondered if and when it would change.  At 20 months, he’s still got them.  His Mama N’s are hazel and tend to change colors sometimes, Papa2Roo’s are brown and mine are a dull blue.  Woob’s eyes are a color all their own.

Over time, we also have noticed other things that we’ve been able to link to N. given our more open contact and getting to know one another better.  The little patch of fuzzy hair on the back of his head is the same as hers even today.  His pretty skin, his fingers, and his body shape–all her.  His picky-eater-tendencies apparently spring from her as well.  Who knows what the little guy gets from us at this point?  There are days when P2R or me can be saying out loud: “buddy, you look just like N. today.”  Sometimes his facial expressions or something, is like looking at a mini-N.  We think its pretty cool.  I am HAPPY he has those visible connections to his family, like I have to mine.  Interestingly enough, for all the time we have spent marvelling over how much Woob looks like his mama, we have been blessed to have been given some snapshots of Woob’s dad, S.  We’ve never met him.  The first time we saw the pictures, it was rather strange, just not knowing what to expect.  I didn’t see the connection at first, still giving all the credit for this fine looking boy all to his mama.  But over time, it is definitely there.  I see S. almost as much as I see N. anymore when I look back at Woob in his car seat or while he’s playing.  Definite links.  Although contact with S. isn’t in the cards for quite some time, if ever, I’m so glad Woob will get to see it play out.

I’ve said it before, but my boy is beautiful.  We are blessed that he remained healthy through the pregnancy and beyond, and we are thankful to N. for taking such good care in sometimes difficult circumstances.  We want to acknlowledge and embrace those things he was born with whether they be physical attributes or talents/skills/affinities for things we know nothing about.  We want to introduce him to the traditions and other interests we have, and hope that we come up with a well-rounded person who feels valued by everyone in the end. 

After all…he is hers and he is ours, and that will not be forgotten.

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Filed under adoptee, adoption, birthparents, motherhood, open adoption, things that make me smile

The One Where She Goes to W*L-M*RT and Becomes Frustrated…

Imagine that.

So, I need to pick up diapers for Woob’s daycare because I’ve forgotten the past few days and we’re in dire straits.  So what harm could it do to go after daycare to pick some up real quick, boy in tow?  I’ll only be a few minutes. (Yeah, RIGHT!)

My boy turned 20 months old yesterday.  Such a big boy!  Surely he can walk along with me while I hold his hand.  He needs to get used to walking around next to me instead of me carrying him like a little baby all the time.  He did a great job holding my hand, and happily chattered to me all through the parking lot, “Car, Car, Car.  Mommy, Car.” My boy.  So precious and smart.  Yes, look at all the cars in the parking lot.  And we walk through the gates of hell  W*l M*art, and he bolts away from me to the…CAR KIDDIE RIDE they keep there to torture parents everywhere entertain the young ones. “CAR, CAR, CAR!”  “Mommy, CAR!” he says as he climbs in and plants himself at the steering wheel with NO intention of EVER coming out of the car, despite the fact that its not going because Mommy has no money.   I have NEVER put my child in this contraption.  However, I am now convinced that he was speaking of THIS car all the way in, and that he has seen it every time we’ve gone to the store for the past 20 months and was just looking for the right opportunity to break away and get into it.

I extricated him, just short of using the “jaws of life,” which of course ended in tears and a pouty lip, and as I am trying to make up for hurt feeling with Teddy Grahams (yes, I am occasionally THAT parent who soothes the hurt with food…), I run smack into Papa2Roo’s former girlfriend, who is looking at me with, I don’t know…pity?…satisfaction?…a little of both?  “Oh, we’re well out of THAT stage in our family,” she says, with an implied “Thank God” at the end just hanging there.  I mumble something about something and go on my way.  But the thing about seeing people in a store is that you keep running into them throughout the trip.  So a few aisles later, there she is again.  “Oh, looks like he’s doing better now…” she says as my little man is grabbing for EVERY flippin’ thing he can get his hands on (because we really need to have 150 Spider man and Shrek products in the razor blade aisle, don’t we?).  And then she does something strange, and starts right in on a weird and rude conversation about adoption…”My brother in law and his wife adopted a little girl from China and are waiting on their second.  My little boy says he wants a little China Doll, too, and we thought about it, but then it takes so long, and by the time we got her then he wouldn’t want to play with her any more anyway, so what’s the point?  And, you know, we’re out of that whole baby stage thing now anyway…”  These were her words, people!  Me, I’m speechless for a second, and after picking my jaw up from the floor, managed to spit out something like, “Well it sounds like that’s for the best,” while in my head I’m screaming OMG, OMG, OMG, are you kidding me?  China Doll?  So your son could have a playmate?  China Doll??  What planet are you from that you think ANY of this discussion is okay?? 

I leave her and thankfully don’t see her again, but the Woob is getting restless with all this nonsense, and there are THINGS TO BE GRABBED so lets go thet them!  “Hold it, hold it!” he says with each new thing I put in the cart.  So I give him an item to hold.  Seems like mushroom soup is a pretty benign thing for someone his age to hold on to, what can it hurt, right?  Until he licks the top of the can.  Ewww.  My son now has Ebola or some such thing from doing this, I’m convinced.  I’ll let you know how that works out.

Finally, we make our way to the checkout and I start planning our exit.  I will be leaving through the exit WITHOUT a kiddie car, and my child will be safely secured in the cart.  We will then walk all the way to the other end of the parking lot outside, and I’m sure he’ll never notice, because after all, I am smarter than a 20 month old.  So we do just that, and the closer we get to the other end the faster he starts saying “car, car, car, car!”  “Car, car, car, car!!”  I’ve tricked no one.  He’s on to my game, but lets me get by with putting him in the carseat for the trip home.  I’m tired, my head hurts, and I know Papa2Roo will not be home when I get there, so supper and bath are my job tonight.

And that quick trip to W*l M*art for diapers??  Cost me almost $80.  Isn’t that always the way?

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Filed under adoption, Eewwww!!, motherhood, vent

8 Random Things

Thank you Miss Natryn, for tagging me on this meme.  I am about the most random person you’ll meet, so…

  1. I am one of the most organized people my family knows.  I am the one who keeps things on track, makes sure the parents’ Christmas presents are purchased (all the sibs go in on them); at my house I pay the bills, use the voice of reason, and take care of all other planning like babysitters, what we’ll wear when we leave the house, and packing the baby’s bag for an outing.
  2. I am one of the most disorganized people you’ll ever meet.  My house is a mess.  My office is a mess.  My car is a mess.  Chores are hit and miss.  I forget birthdays, phone numbers, and NEVER remember to RSVP.
  3. I won my school spelling bee in the 8th grade and went on to the County Bee.  Who knew “adonis” was a word?  I know how to spell it now, but unfortunately not in the second round.
  4. The trophy from the above county bee (that EVERY participant got), is the only trophy I ever won.
  5. I can roll my tongue, which is apparently some genetic thing.  You can either do it or not, it supposedly can’t be learned (is that right?).  I can also touch the tip of my nose with my tongue.
  6. I very well may have seen every episode of Saturday Night Live…who knows?
  7. My first car was a 1962 Ford Falcon (white, four-door, with red and white interior) lovingly referred to as “The Fridge” (the heater didn’t work!)
  8. Oh, the smell of men’s “Polo” cologne…takes me back to my high school days.  I doubt that it’s cool for guys to wear it these days, but mmmm, mmmm, mmmm.

Just a reminder–the meme asks for “random,” not necessarily “interesting” or “exciting” or “scandalous.”

I’m gonna break the rules and not tag others—I’ve seen many others take up the challenge themselves already.  If it looks interesting to you, go for it!

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Filed under adoption, memes

Go Read Claud’s Blog

This week, Claud wrote two posts on her alternate blog that were just so touching and beautifully written.  Writing about all she and her placed son missed over the years, and reflecting on how her life would be different now if she would have made even one different choice all those years ago.  How the choices that followed would have been different as well.  If you haven’t read these posts, please do.  As I was reading, it just struck me, really struck me, that when women are making choices based on all the reasons they should place, all the things they’ll gain from it, all the good that will come of it…no one is telling them all the things they’ll miss.  All the things their child will miss.  I already knew this on a different level.  I believe women should receive counseling and make decisions based on the WHOLE truth of what adoption means.  But somehow these little pieces of writing had me FEELING it in a very different way.  Thank you, Claud.

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Filed under adoption, birthparents, grief, motherhood, reflection

All My Hoosier Bloggy Friends Went to the Children’s Museum and All I Got Was…

this lousy weekend!

I was so bummed not to get to go to the Hoosier Get-together (and am waiting anxiously to hear about all the fun!  And see pictures!)  But its had been a rather trying week, which continued throughout the weekend.  Short story:  Woob was injured, now he’s getting better.  Mama was sick, now she’s better.  Woob’s been a total BEAR, which is making mama cranky as well.  If we would have taken our chances and made the trip it would have ended badly for everyone involved.  Very.  Badly.

The high point was me running away from home Sunday afternoon for some retail therapy at the mall.  It wasn’t very therapeutic (at one point I was crying in the GAP changing room for no real reason), but I did pick up some cute jeans, a new pair of shoes and some sweaters I didn’t hate.

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