Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Inner Anxiousness

These last few days have me filled with so much inner anxiousness!

If you see me, you will see a smile on my face, but inside I am ball of worry, fear, stress, anxiousness...

I am worried about our boy. Is he being cared for, fed, loved, cuddled, played with?

Now these aren't new worries. They have always been there.

They are just bubbling up even more now because we know we are close to bringing him home.

You know the old saying "So close yet so far away!"

It's how I feel right now.

It's all I can do to keep myself from booking a flight and heading to Ethiopia tomorrow.

I am worried about how we will bond with our boy.

He has been in the arms of his caregivers for over a year now. Every time I think about taking him out of the world he has known for so long I become overwhelmed with emotion.

We are both trying not to fantasize how our first meeting will go.

We know we won't be doing the slow motion running into the foster home and gathering him up in our arms and him beaming at us with joy thinking "Where have you been all my life?".

We know he will be unsure about us. "Who are these people? Why are they taking me from everything I know? What is happening to me?"

I have been reading all kinds of attachment parenting books about how to make the transition easier for him but honestly I feel like I know even less than I did before.

The reading has helped but it has also opened up the window of endless scenarios of how he will act with us and it has me chewing my fingernails with worry.

How does one feel so ready yet so not ready all at the same time?

We are ready to be parents. and we have been ready for a long time.

But we have never been parents before and this is all so new to us.

We see our friends with their kids and it all seems so easy. But it isn't easy we know that. They have had time with their children and their children are used to them as parents.

My fear is that he isn't ready for us. Of course he isn't. He has no clue we are even coming. He has been with people who know how to care for him for so long. We have no idea what his particular needs are.

O.k. yes, we do - generically - we know he needs food, diaper changes, naps, love, play time....

But we don't know his sounds and cries and what it is that comforts him when he is scared.

We will learn these things over time but right now I am anxious.

I am worried he will be shouting in his little head "These people have no idea what they are doing! Someone help me!" while in reality it will come out as sobs of fear and we won't know how to make him feel and know we are there for him when he needs.

Then the anxiousness of "we have missed so much" kicks in. It has been a year since we first saw his sweet little face and he has grown and changed so much with out us.

It breaks my heart!!

I want to rewind the clock and have that time back with him but I can't.

I look forward to all the firsts we will have together as a family but will always mourn the firsts we didn't get to share with him.

I can't wait for the day they tell us we can go get him but I also dread it because it is the day we take him from the home he has always known.

I feel like I am a babbling baffoon right now...there is so much going on inside of my heart and head.


Carolyn said...

Awesome post!!!!!!!!!! You took the words right out of my mouth! Leul has been at the foster home since Feb 2009- it will be almost 2 years by the time we travel to get him. I share all your worries and concerns. We will get though this but our little boys are in for a huge transition. Leaving Ethiopia is going to be bitter sweet.


Brendan and Mary said...

Beautiful and honest post. These are such normal feelings because it is such a huge and scary transition for all three of you. But you guys are going to be awesome parents and you will have the rest of Ade's life to screw up and apologize. ;) He is one lucky baby!

Julie said...

Hugs to you (and to you Carolyn). Just hugs

D Dae said...

The fact that you are feeling these emotions proves what a fantastic parent you are going to be, you are viewing this from his point of view, not based on your needs, and that is over half the battle. Just remember it is not about you at all, it is 100% about him. You seem to have this aspect of parenting down pat, you are going to be a fantastic Mum.

Curvy Runner said...

Hubby and I were just having a similar conversation the other night. Some of our friends don't really "get" our anxiousness and worry for how our son will react to all of the change, the first meeting, coming to Canada. He hasn't been dreaming about us, planning for us, carting a picture around for months like we have. In our hearts our son is already loved and cherished. When we meet him...well he isn't going to know us from a can of paint. I wish that the flowery first meeting was real, but I am more prepared for the shying away, please don't touch me scenario. And that is ok, because we love him enough to give him the time he needs to adjust. Basically this was a really long comment to say "I hear ya, girl"!

Shannon said...

I imagine most every adoptive parent feels this way! I have had many of the same concerns and we don't even have a referral! I haven't done too terribly much reading yet and for that very reason you brings up way too many "what if" scenarios. I feel like talking with others is the best thing for me at this point. I know there's tonnes of literature and I want to be educated, but part of me wonders if it's just better to wait and see if those problems arise. Some adoptive parents I know have suggested that to me. I don't know!

What I can say is that I felt all these same fears with my bio kids. They were extremely colicky babies and so I never felt like they "knew" me or bonded to me right away. It was a struggle and took a lot of time to bond and make it through those tiring months. I feel like bio or adopted, patience is really the only thing we can hope for!!! I'm sure it will be great in the end, no matter how your initial meeting goes!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Rana! Your post is heartbreaking to me, and understand it completely. However, as a new parent, I want to share some basic facts:
1) Time.... You have to be patient, and KNOW, that in time, it'll all work, like everything always does.
2) You may have missed some firsts, but there is a lifetime full of firsts yet to be had and shared.
3) The lack of confidence in you is shared by all new parents, both natural or adopted. Your instincts are good, and you will know what to do, and you have all kinds of resources to help you.
4) Ade may be leaving what he has known since birth, but he is leaving for his HOME, his FOREVER HOME! He may be leaving people who have cared for him and loved him, but he is going to be in the arms of 2 people that love him more! Kids adjust sooooo well, and quickly! All he is going to feel is the intense love and caring that you and Yvan will give him. He will know that he is safe and that he is loved! That's all that matters! (And he will NOT know that you don't know what you are doing as a parent...only you know, and you WILL figure it out.)

You will be fine. Ade will be fine. Just stay positive and get ready to love that little guy to death! I am soooo excited for you guys! And if there's is anything we can do.....

Take care, You....Your lives are about to change!!!


PS. For the trip..... a travel doodle pad at Toys R Us. You know the ones that have a magnetized pen attatched, and a handle to erase it all!?!? If you don't know what I'm talking about, let me know. I'll get you a picture. Kat draws on it constantly and she is never without it. Plus, no mess, and simple!

Rhonda, Kristin, Eden said...


This is exactly what all of us felt/feel when we were/are getting so close to the end/beginning!

Now I'm babbling, but this is all normal crazy thoughts it is. You will find a groove, it might take a while, but you will.

PS. This is just my opinion, but sometimes those books you read leave you more confused and crazed then your natural instincts...

Ramona said...

Oh I go right back to the days before bring P& M home... The more I read the more I felt I knew and the more anxious I got... The night before, it really hit me- I was in love with the kids photos, not our kids because I didn't know who they really were! And get this- after the long wait, at the Weygoss I looked at Hazel and said "I'm so not ready for this!"... And as prepared as I thought I was, I was really thrown off by the extreme screaming and stress and all that came when we finally were with our kids. But it has gotten so much better- so even if you have a rough start- you can breath again later! And others get a great start and so you never know...
Ade is in for big changes and so are you, but together with your support team and of course Yvan, you guys will become a family.
A great friend reminded me that kids seldom remember the first years of their life. Yes it does affect them and their brain development etc, but the part I took from that was that they won't remember all the things we do wrong. And as sad as I feel knowing our kids won't remember much of Ethiopia, I'm so glad they won't remember everything I've done not as perfectly as I should have/could have...
You and Yvan are going to have so much time to learn and get to know each other. And I'm praying for the three of you and that you will soon be figuring these things out together.

Ramona said...

"You and Yvan are going to have so much time to learn and get to know each other"; I meant to say You and Yvan are going to have so much time TOGETHER WITH ADE to learn and get to know each other.

Anonymous said...

You are smart and savvy and resourceful and full of love and you will use your instincts, and the expertise of others, and you will muddle your way through parenthood as we all do.

Littleone said...

What a sweet and honest post. I have not been able to be so talented with the words lately. I am sure that you and Yvan will do an amazing job...just remeber it takes time and parenting is full of mistakes...that's how we learn. I hope you are all together very soon!

Natalie and Chris said...

I have to same worries and i am much farther away. I keep saying to Chris "wow, someday we will actually be parents, will we be ok" but the real answer is yes we will. We will all have our ups and downs but things will work out and you will be amazing parents and do what is best for YOUR son, and not what others feel you should be doing. Books help but they also instill fear that is unnecessary. Hence why alot of mine are still unread.
Hang in there, so close and NOT so far!

K_I_T_ said...

Ding Ding Ding(like the game show dings). That is exactly how I felt.

Hugs, kisses and cuddles go a long way for building that bond. Even in Ethiopia, you will be surprised how you will bond. Yes, he will be sad. But he won't associate you with taking him from his world. He is too little for that. He will just know he isn't there, but you guys are there instead. Im sure at first they wonder who in the world are these people, at least that is how Nevi's face looked. Also Mesfin and Ketema are so great at helping this transition. Really...they are. They speak to them in their language, but then in English too. If they are crying lots, they take them for you, not to make you feel like, oh you aren't doing a good job, but just to give them comfort and a familiar color of skin(!) and words. And so are the ladies at the Weygoss. They love to hold them while you eat, and they just talk to them, and I think that it eases the transition....
YOU, my funky, funny, awesome Rana (and Yvan, but I don't know if he is funky and funny, but i know he is awesome...)will figure it out right away. My sister told me with Jay, cause that was my first time mom experiance, crying doesn't kill them...(that sounded harsh.....) But anyhow, it is bound to happen that the first days or even first time you hold Ade cause he's scared...BUT it is ok. And I sometimes cried with Nev. But the crying will stop, and get less, and you will jump right in and steal little Ade's heart. I know it.

Now Im rambling...but I so know you guys will do awesome. And the fact that you are feeling these feelings of saddness of taking Ade from the home, shows how much you love him already, cause your already sad for his loss. But his gain is so much more.....

K_I_T_ said...

DANG and my LONG posts....AGAIN...too long to post...
And I had some good stuff in there....!Frick

K_I_T_ said...

Oh and there it is...Now Im kind of embarassed, maybe my stuff wasn't good and here I am bragging that it was so good, and it wasn't there. At least when i thought it wasn't there, I could pretend my stuff was good.....