Does it feel the same? Bio and Adoption
I remember when I was pregnant with my oldest son Zachary. I had no idea what was in store for me. I had no idea of the scope of the emotions that motherhood would evoke. I was on the verge of the greatest love of my life.
I remember looking at him after he was born. I loved to just look at him. I would check on him all of the time while he was sleeping to make sure that he was still breathing and that everything was ok. His smell was the sweetest. I would hold him and look into his eyes and he would run his little fingers through my hair. I loved him in a way that I had never loved anyone. My heart was consumed with him.
When I discovered that I was pregnant again with Tyler, I worried. It was a secret worry. I wondered how I could ever love Tyler as much as I loved Zachary. I could not imagine loving two people that deeply and completely.
My worries were completely unfounded. When Tyler was born, it was like my heart grew and Tyler had his special place filled with all of the love and joy that Zachary’s place in my heart held. I was doubly blessed with my two beautiful sons.
Elijah was a surprise for me. I had not truly intended to have more children. He came to me later in life. I was an older and more mature mother. It was a very stressful time in my life though. Tim and I had not been married for very long and had a lot of new family issues to deal with. My job was shaky. I was put on bed rest for six months due to uncontrollable bleeding. It was a tough time. But when he was born, he brought us such joy.
Shortly after he was born, I started to think about the gap between him and his brothers. There are 10 years between him and Tyler. I didn’t want him to grow up alone. I was already re-living the baby years and truly enjoying them. I knew that another pregnancy was not advisable since I had had such a tough time carrying Elijah. Tyler had been a very difficult pregnancy too. I started to think about adoption.
Tim and I started working on our adoption of Sophia on our second anniversary. I was very excited about it. But the secret fear came back. Can I love her the same? Will the fact that she is adopted make a difference? My mind said, “absolutely not, it will make no difference”. But I still had the secret fear.
Our journey to Sophia was a very long and emotional one. Sometimes it seemed as if she would never come home. But after three and a half years, it was our time. We were going to China to meet our daughter.
The feelings I had when I first saw Sophia were not the same as was when I first saw my sons. I was completely overwhelmed with sadness and anger. I was unprepared in my heart to meet a child who had no one. I could not believe that there was no Aunt, Uncle or Grandparent who would come forward for this child. To be looking into the eyes of a beautiful child who has no one in this world will literally stop your heart. How could this happen to this baby? How could there be no one? Looking abandonment in the face was devastating to me.
And then my heart kicked in. I was no longer looking at abandonment. I was looking at my child. Right at that moment she became my child. No longer an orphan. No longer with no one. We had come forward and with us Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles and loves ones in America came forward too. We were now her family.
My heart grew Sophia’s place where all of my love and joy for her lives. It is every bit as real and alive as the love I have for her brothers. The secret fear was unfounded again. For me a child is a child no matter how God brings them to you and I am so happy that I can say that. I am so happy that I love her the way that I do.
My relationship with her is uniquely its own. There has been a lot of bonding and growing and changing over these past seven months. My relationship with each of my children is unique. They each have their own personalities that interact in different ways with my own personality. They are each uniquely loved by me, their mother. I feel so blessed to have the motherhood experiences that I have had. I am so humbled by the gift of my children. They are pure magic to me and I thank God for them.