I’ve written my blogs so far about the past and some of the more painful elements of my journey, so I thought I needed to counter this with something positive about the future.
I’ve had to work hard to feel the positive, but I knew that I had to absorb and process my story. I had to be ok about not being able to have my own biological child, before I adopted a child, because I didn’t want my child to ever feel that they were plan B, that they were a substitute for what I had been unable to have. They are what I want. A child, a family, motherhood. Writing has played a huge part in processing my childlessness and baby loss.
Its easy when you start the adoption process and start reading all the recommended books to focus on the tough stuff. I am very nervous about how broken my child could be and how I’ll cope with any behavioural impact of the potential abuse and neglect my child may have experienced or simply because of the trauma of being removed from everyone and everything they know and love and moving in with someone completely new and unknown. Such brave little souls, needing to trust that adults will look after them as they have no other choice, whilst also having been let down by the adults who were meant to care for them. New routines, new smells, new bedroom, new emotions. Their bravery is humbling.
I am under no illusions. Parenting is a tough gig, regardless of how you came to be one. But, just sometimes, I allow myself to dream. I allow myself a little look through the rose-tinted glasses of happiness and excitement. Of having a baby seat in my car, at last; of finally pushing a pram with my child in it; of hearing the word “mum”; of feeling a tiny little hand in mine; of waking up with the knowledge that my baby is there, in their cot/bed, waiting to start the day with me. The joy of hearing a beautiful giggle. I live close to a primary school and in summer with the windows open I can hear playtime. It’s a bittersweet sound. I love it, its so joyful, so normal, but for such a long time it has hurt beyond belief to hear it. I am so looking forward to this precious sound being restored in its rightful place, as one of the best.
I love reading, I cannot wait to read books together. I want to play in the garden together. I cannot wait to see my amazing boyfriend be the patient and kind father I know he will be. I can already see that he will be good cop in our good cop: bad cop parenting routine. He will have just the right mix of fun and discipline. He will have a huge impact in grounding our child when they have a meltdown because their past trauma is too tough to deal with.
I don’t yet know what age or gender our child will be but I’ve been looking at children’s bedrooms on Pinterest all the same , I know the style I want, I’ve stopped short of buying anything yet. Yet! I suspect as soon as we’ve got some carpet down upstairs, I won’t be able to resist for long! I cannot wait to start filling the room with toys and books. I even cannot wait for my living room to be covered in toys. Well, more toys, since Chloe (my dog), pulls out all the toys she is going to need for the day from her toybox, every morning and scatters them over the living room rug, ready to be played with at any chosen moment. I love how much our living room floor looks like a family home when she does that.
I’m excited about awakening my inner mum. A part of me that I have always felt would make my soul stop its endless searching, for its missing part. I cannot wait for a random stranger to ask me, “do you have children?” and to finally be able to say “yes!” and to continue by telling them my child’s name and age and if possible, list all their beautiful traits which make me so proud that they are my baby. “Yes, I am a mum”. Words at times I felt, I may never get to say. A response to a question, which has so often made me feel ashamed of my story.
I think the most exciting thing, is that I already love my child. I have loved them forever. All I need is for them to be here so I can love them in person. I cannot wait to shower them with their rightful love. I am looking forward to getting to know them. I cannot wait to look into their eyes. To see the missing part of my soul reflected back at me. I cannot wait to hear their voice. A voice that will spark joy when I hear it. A voice which I think will feel familiar the moment I hear it. My baby’s voice. I want to know every part of them, in a hope that with love I can support them to not feel shame for their past, which is so often the case. To feel pride as they face things they have felt scared about. To help them process their own story and hopefully support them in becoming confident and kind beings.
I don’t know how to put into words the feelings in my heart as I write this, the joyful anticipation. These days, I am wary of too much excitement. I felt excitement with every one of my pregnancies and each one was crushed. It does tend to shape your experience of excitement, when 100% of your most exciting times turn to devastation. But you can’t keep a good emotion down and the excitement is building the closer we get to our Panel date. My motherhood is the closest it has ever been.