Today I miss kids I don’t even know. Talk about a weird feeling… even as I write I’m not sure what this is all about. It’s not like I’m just impatient to find out who they are and to meet and get to know them (although I am). This is different. I’m ok with waiting, knew we’d be waiting, and even feel used the 10 month wait we underwent during my last 2 pregnancies. I think with the pregnancies it was different because even though I couldn’t see or meet the kids while they were in my belly, they were with me all the time and I felt like I could care for, protect, and bond with them at least to some extent. With this process, I have none of that. Instead, I have knowledge that these two are out there somewhere in Uganda, waiting for their mom and dad. I also have 2 kids who cannot wait to meet their new brother and sister, a spare room waiting to be made into a bedroom, piles of paperwork, and a heart that is already full of love and longing for these 2 little lives. There’s a very weird tension where I feel very connected to these two kids, and yet so far and disconencted at the same time. I feel helpless in my ability to care for them and protect them, and that makes me sad (so that makes me sad and crazy excited about the same thing, which sometimes just makes me feel crazy).
A few days ago a friend asked me how the adoption process is going. But before I could get a word out she said, “wait a minute… you are expecting. I’m supposed to ask you how you are feeling.” This small nuance was much appreciated by me. One question acknowledges the presence of a lot of external logistics that I’m having to navigate, the other acknowledges the internal reality that I’m also trying to figure out how to navigate. With pregnancy I had visible, outward proof that something big was happening in me, but with adoption, it can feel isolating because that inward work is not as commonly acknowledged. I look the same, but I don’t feel the same. And the reality is, things will never be the same. Just as with pregnancy, the reality of these two coming kids takes up all kinds of physical, mental and emotional space. Sometimes that is fun, and sometimes that is hard. But one thing I know for sure, the emotional roller-coaster expectant parents of every kind experience is just a part of the journey (and it doesn’t end once the child is physically present with you). So I’m getting comfortable on this wild ride and trying to take it all in along the way.