It's a few days before Christmas. Last Christmas Matt and I celebrated here in Los Angeles alone. We opened presents then went to see "Lion" at the AMC. The movie, about adoption, shook me to my core and I left the theater to splash water on my face. Twice.
Now here we are here. This little man, who had nowhere to go, will be home in our house. He's a beginner in this world and I'm a beginner in this role. I take my giant pinky around his tiny one and pinky swear him that I will do my best. My absolute best.
After demonstrating to the nurses that we could change a diaper, swaddle and load babe into a car seat we are given the green light to head home. With a seven day old baby. As we walked out of the hospital the nurse took our family photo and said she’d keep us in her prayers. I sit in the backseat next to Baby A’s car seat and begin doing what I’ll do for the next ten days.
I just stare at him.
His perfect gossamer eyelids and pouty pink lips and hairy forehead (yes, forehead) and tiny fingers and toes. I stare in wonder.
What I'd pictured and imagined was a hodgepodge of other people's foster stories, other people's children. He is nothing like those stories or those photographs. He's right here, right on time. So many strings attached, nothing guaranteed. I'm all in.
My dad called a couple of days before he arrived. He told me he went to Catholic mass in Omaha to pray for us. And when the priest asked for who to pray for, he spoke up. For us. It's never been easy for us to speak in front of groups and when he told me he did, his voice shook.
"I knew I needed to, MB."
So he did.
This child is so wanted, so loved, so celebrated.
From a stranger to a son within moments.
We are all connected.