I woke up to these words several years before Jackson was even a thought in our mind. “The best is still ahead.” And boy was he right. Heather and I will address the birth of our son, Jackson together over the next several posts. Heather’s comments will be in italics. Most of these were sent to us in a letter from Heather 12 days after Jackson was born. Heather has given me permission to use them and will also write more current posts as we navigate through this process together.
There I was, sitting on my couch at 4:45 AM on August 12th, 2014. So many emotions ran through my mind as I waited for Jessica and JJ to pick me up to go to the hospital. I was excited. I felt like I waited for this day my entire life. I was nervous. I didn’t know what to expect of this day that was ahead of me. I was scared. As I prayed for God to be with me, I could not shake away all of the fear that I felt. “Were there going to be any complications? Was Jackson going to be healthy? Was Jessica and JJ only going to care about their son, and not me? How was I going to cope with the decision that I chose?” Thoughts and all different emotions exploded my brain. I took many deep breaths. Then I saw their car pull up. It was time to go.
As we drove to pick Heather up I remember being a nervous wreck for the first time. I knew nothing about giving birth and up to this point I never even watched someone give birth. Oh, and I hate hospitals, they smell. What if I fainted? What if it smelled bad? What if JJ didn’t really want to be in there (All 3 of us were going to be in the delivery room)? What if something went wrong? What if something was wrong with the baby? The amount of “what if” questions rushed through my head like a tidal wave. Then we got to her apartment and she looked so beautiful and all my fears (well most of them, I still worried about the baby!) were gone. Heather has a very calming personality and it is exactly what I needed.
We finally made it to the hospital and were getting settled into the delivery room. Time began to fly that morning. I loved that time. That time was spent getting to know Jessica and JJ even more. It was just us three rambling on and on about random thoughts for hours. The contractions were coming, but were very tolerable. That morning was a wonderful morning. We were all clueless as to what lied ahead of us that day- three clueless beings of the upcoming events. That day would involve sadness and happiness ranging from the highest to the lowest, and we had no idea. I cherished that morning.
I loved every minute of this morning. We talked about everything you could possibly think of. Even after spending 20 weeks getting to know someone who is going to change your life forever, spending an unknown number of hours before the birth of our son was even more than I could handle. It was incredibly magical though. I dreamt about what this day would be like for so long I couldn’t believe it was actually happening. And I couldn’t believe I was going to be in the room when he was born. In my mind our adoption was going to go something like this, the birth mom would be 8-9 months pregnant and we would get the call that she chose us, we would have little time to get to know her and then the baby would come. And that would be it. What I thought was going to happen couldn’t have been farther from reality and I thank God everyday for our beautiful story.
My mom was in the corner of the room with me the whole time. Just her presence was amazing. JJ and Jessica had been in and out of the room because their parents were in the waiting room. I was happy that my mom was there and didn’t leave my side. The contractions started to get so intense, and the nurse offered me some medicine to help me relax. “Yes, please!” Anything to help that pain would have been considered. She hooked up the medicine, and instantly, there I was feeling like a drunk person. The pain didn’t go away, but I just did not care about it anymore. Sure enough, I started laughing. I started laughing so hard that I couldn’t stop, all in front of Jessica, JJ, and my mom. That was my inner, goofy spirit coming out full force.
Heather had always been on the quiet side around us, just a more laid-back personality and to see her laugh and have a silly side was amazing to see. (I know where Jackson gets it from now!!) I remember thinking at one point, we are so similar. And the more we got to know each other the more I thought we were so much alike. And now that I saw a silly side to her, I thought, whoa, maybe we are more alike than I thought!!! Both mine and JJ’s parents were in the waiting room that day, along with Heather’s grandparents who came later and her dad at one point. Having 3 generations of Jackson’s birth family at the hospital was incredibly beautiful. You could feel the love in the room the minute you walked in. The love for one little boy.
I learned that for the past couple of hours, my family was able to sit and talk to Jessica and JJ’s family. That made me so happy. My mom, Grandma and Grandpa had nothing but wonderful things to say about everyone. They were so happy about my decision, and felt relief after really getting to know who Jackson would be raised by. They all told me that I did an amazing job choosing JJ and Jessica.
And our parents had nothing but wonderful things to say about Heather’s family. They are some of the most caring and loving people you will ever meet. They have a strong family bond and really rallied around all of us during these hours and days at the hospital. Couldn’t be more proud to be their family now.
Part two will continue with the events of that amazing day from my point of view and Heather’s which will be posted later this week.