Peter and I got to bed really late as the anticipation of the coming day was bugging us a bit. It also didn't help that we were in a different time zone and our clocks were still on the west coast. Finally we settled in and slept good. We got up and got ready for the day at 6:30 and slowly got ready. Knowing the induction was supposed to start at 8, we figured we wouldn't hear anything for awhile beyond that, so we might as well just take our time. We went into the lobby and ate a relaxing breakfast. Surprisingly I woke up with total peace but I could tell Peter was a little bit nervous.
After eating we came back to the room and waited. Just as I started to doze off (around 9:30) my phone rang and it was our attorney telling us the birth mother was at the hospital for the induction and for us to just hang tight as she requested us to not come to the hospital. The number one rule for adoption I feel like is to roll with the changes and be flexible. So we prepared to wait it out. We went and did a little bit of shopping and then started to drive around and explore the area. Around 11:30 my phone rang again and it was our attorney. To our surprise, she said the birth mother had now requested that we come and meet her at the hospital now. We had to wait and coordinate things with the hospital social worker at so we decided to head back to the room and grab our stuff and go and find some flowers. We had no expectation (as this was not part of our birth mother's plan) of meeting her today so needless to say we were caught a little off guard and wanted to make sure we gave her a good impression.
Around 12:30 we got a call from the social worker and headed up to the hospital. The social worker took us in and introduced us and then left. Here we were, alone with the woman who was going to give us her most precious gift. The flowers were a great icebreaker and she was thrilled to have them. She was very easy to talk to and conversation went so smooth. We found out at this point she was still waiting for the induction to start. Eventually, the doctor came in to administer the epidural and we offered to leave but she assured me that she wanted me to stay (Peter left). Thus began the journey of our bonding. The induction finally started and she was on her way. The poor thing started getting really sick and I felt horrible for her. It was so weird to be on the OTHER side of the delivery room. We wanted to be totally respectful of her and I knew she was getting tired so we let her have a little break. She assured us that she wanted us to come back and be with her.
We were told the induction would move slowly and if all went well, we would have a baby before midnight. So we ate some lunch and then hung back out around the hotel room. We told the birth mother to let us know when she was ready for us to come back so I assumed she must have still been resting. After a few hours of waiting though, we decided we would head back over there and if the nurses said she was resting then we would just wait in the waiting room until she was ready for us. This was around 4PM. We got up to the hospital and I buzzed the nurses where they asked if we wouldn't mind waiting in the waiting room and they would let us know when we could go in. We just figured she was still resting. After about 5 minutes of waiting, my phone rang and it was the birth mother. I will never forget what she had to say, as I said hello she responded with "She's Here!". Um what? We were only gone 2 hours and the birth mother was only 1cm when we left! I was in total shock that we had another baby girl. I also thought it was really special that one of her first things she wanted was to let me know that the baby was born!
We waited a few more minutes before we were able to go back and meet our little girl! It was love at first sight, all 5 lbs 6 ounces of her! After a little bit of time they put a baby wristband on me and moved us and our little love off to the nursery. We learned at this point that it had been determined that our birth mother was actually due on August 10th not August 21st and the baby had been diagnosed with Intrauterine Growth Restriction as she only weighed in the 3rd percentile for 38 weeks gestation. Hence why they decided to induce. Typically the same level of complications that a preemie has are possible with an IUGR baby. So she required a little bit of extra monitoring and blood sugar tests at the beginning but she was perfect in every way!
We hung out in the nursery for several hours before we were asked to take the baby back to the room with the birth mother. We spent hours and were up far to late visiting and getting to know our baby and her first mama! It was something I never expected to happen but it was such an incredible time that I will never forget. I know it will serve L well in life to have both of her mommy's involved in her life and I am thrilled it has developed the way it has.
Over the next 2 days, our time was rotated back in forth from the nursery to rolling on down to the birth mother's room when she wanted company. We spent hours upon hours with her and got to know a lot about her life and what has brought her to the choice of adoption. Those are sacred moments I will never forget. Having no details to share with Malachi, I felt like it was such a gift to see her sense of humor and strength in person and to know she loves the color pink and enjoys singing and writing and playing piano. We truly became family in this time as our hearts connected over a mutual interest of doing what we all felt like was best for this sweet baby girl. She wanted a better life for her daughter and we know having a connection and staying in touch with her birth mother is in her best interest too. She was able to ask us everything she wondered about and said she had complete peace about giving L to us and knew we would do a good job. My prayer all along has been that the birthmother we chose would have complete peace and I feel like God answered that prayer.
We had to wait 2 days before papers could be signed making L officially our daughter. That time was stressful. Even when you are as sure as you can be, there is still a chance she could change her mind and that is totally within her rights. I won't even get into all the details because it is private but there was some serious family drama that happened over these 2 days that put us on edge and continued to show us just what level of strength our birth mother has. She never faltered in her plan and always made me feel like I was L's mommy. Finally the moment of truth came and we were asked to go wait in the nursery while the attorney signed the papers. That was another strange mix of emotions. One person had to lose, in order for us to gain. This was not an easy moment for any of us. After what felt like an eternity of waiting, we were told we could go back in the room. The consents were signed. L was ours. We spent about another 30 minutes in the room with our birth mother as she said her goodbyes and whispered a million "I love you's" and "I'm going to miss you" in her ears. I vowed to our birth mother that this was not the end. In fact, we plan on getting together with her again before we leave and told her she will always have my phone number to call and text to stay in touch. And then it was over. Our birth mother parted one way and we parted the other way as a new family.