Friday, March 30, 2012

Adoption or biological?

Ever since I was a teenager, I have always wanted to adopt a child.   Since having Jordan, I am fearful that a similar situation will happen to us in the future.  Do I want to chance getting hurt so badly again? Life is an uncertain thing and only God knows what our future will hold.  Therefore, I have begun praying and asking God to send me a sign.  A sign that would lead me to choose adoption or pregnancy in our future.

My morning routine consists of watching GMA until 9:00 followed by Live with Kelly from 9-10.  During that time I will listen to the programs, eat breakfast, have my coffee, and tend to Brady's needs.  Just the other day, I decided to put PBS on for Brady instead.   He sat and watched The Cat in the Hat then Super Why came on. Brady lost interest, but I kept it on anyway.  Brady and I played with his train while this cartoon continued playing.

If you have ever watched Super Why, you know that they have several "words of the day" that are discussed.   During this particular program, one of the words was: ADOPT.

(Below is the summary of the episode from that day: I found it online)    

scene from episode
Ain't Nothin' but a Pound Dog, part 2

When Martha's family comes to take her home, she decides she can't leave her shelter friends behind. Adopting that many dogs is out of the question, so Martha, Helen, and T.D. cook up a plan to find families for the pound pooches. (2nd of two parts)


(E) adopt, affection, devoted, embrace, loyal
(I) adore, belong, care, dream, hope

As the word of the day, ADOPT, came on the screen, I stopped in my tracks and wondered if this was my sign.  Could it be?  Nah, it is just a coincidence.  I thought to myself, if a butterfly appears soon, I will know it truly is a sign.   I kid you not, about 20 seconds later the following advertisement appeared.   This time I was quick with the remote control to pause the screen for proof.

There you have it.  My sign.  So now what?  Well, now we wait until we are ready emotionally to take action.  Chad and I still need to do some major talking about this topic and I need to continue to pray about it.   Whether we have biological children or adopted children, I am hopeful that our family will grow.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Friend Toni

Let me tell you a little bit about my friend Toni.  I have only known Toni for about a year and a half.  She just happened to live in the house across the street from the one we bought in Cranberry Twp.  When we bought our house, she and I were both pregnant.   I was pregnant with Brady, and she was pregnant with her second child, Dane.
It wasn't until August of 2010 that I really started to get to know Toni.  By this time, we were both taking care of infants and sharing stories with each other.  We would bounce baby ideas and strategies off of each other.  It was nice to have her so close.   Our boys have really grown up together and have become good friends.   Just the other day, they were riding side by side in Dane's power jeep, enjoying one anothers company.   While the boys play, Toni and I talk and catch up on each others day.

When the weather permits, Toni and I usually always walk laps around our neighborhood, pushing the boys in the strollers.   We usually clock about 1.5 miles and not a silent moment comes over us.  We talk and talk and talk.   It is SO nice to have such a great friend who lives so close.  Last summer, we would talk about my plans for adding our second child.   Jordan consumed a lot of our conservation as I tried to figure out what I would do with Brady when I went into labor.  As you could imagin, Toni was the first to offer her time to watch Brady when our time arrived. 

Toni and her husband both work full time and raise two children, Dane and Abby.   I know how precious her family time is to her and how hectic her schedule can sometimes be.   Abby is involved in many after school activities and her husband, Kevin, travels overnight often.  I was not suprised when Toni offered to care for Brady while I was in the hospital.  That is just the kind of person she is.  Little did she know what she really signed up for until November 16th came rolling around.

After I had gone to the hospital for what I thought would be a quick check of Jordan's heart rate, Chad contacted Toni to watch Brady so he could try and make it for the birth of Jordan.  Toni stayed with Brady for most of the afternoon while unexprected events unfolded at the hospital.  Thursday, Toni came to visit me at the hospital since my in-laws had arrived and were able to watch Brady.   I did most of the talking as she listened to me ramble about what had taken place the day before.  She added words of encouragement and hope as I spoke.   As she left on Thursday night, we had made plans for her to pick me up Friday morning to drive me to Children's to meet/see Jordan.  Friday came and I had received several calls from Chad prompting me to come as soon as possible.  My gut told me things were not looking good for my sweet son.   Toni arrived and helped me into her car.  We were in route to Children's when I got the horrifying call that Jordan had passed away.   Only Toni and God were with me as I reacted in pure horror, screaming: NO!!!  

Tears of sadness ran down our cheeks.  We were both at a loss for words.  Fifteen minutes later, we arrived at Children's.   We walked arm in arm up to the NICU and into Jordan's room.  We were raw with emotion as our eyes set on Jordan for the first time.  We looked on as Chad held him in his arms.   I took a turn holding my sweet angel and then passed him to Toni when I was done admirring him.  What a friend!  She had seen it all.  She was right there with me in the midst of the worst time in my life. She was there to  hold my hand, to talk to, to cry with.  She knew what had transpired and how I reacted.  She was there. 

Afterwards, she contacted the Bunco ladies from our neighborhood and organized meals for us.  She and the other neighbors bought us a dogwood tree in memory of Jordan.  She called me every single day for the first month to check in.  She thought about us constantly and wondered how we were doing.  She invited us over for Thanksgiving dinner.  She continues to call on the 16th of every month.  She reads my blog entries as they are posted.  She listens to me talk about my grief and offers her support.   She has been affected by the death of Jordan as much as I have been.  She gets it.

Toni has been so helpful to me during my grief process.  I don't know if words can really express how fortunate I am to have such a great friend.  I am pretty sure God had a part in us meeting.  He knew I would need a friend like her to care for me in my time of need.  After all, my long time friends and family were fours hours away. 

Just a few weeks ago we got news that Chad's job would be moving us closer to family and old friends.  The news was bitter sweet. We were very excited to receive the news, but very upset to be leaving Toni and her family.   I know she will only be a phone call away, but knowing I can't walk across the street to talk in person or for a comforting hug will be very hard.  I hope and pray that our friendship will last for the long haul.  You don't find friends like Toni everyday.    We share a common bond, Jordan, and I am certain he will keep us close. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

He melts my heart

Brady is having fun coloring Jordan's four month butterfly! Thank God for Brady!

Keeping the faith at 4 months

    Oh the thoughts of having a four month old...I tried to recall what Brady was doing at four months.  I remember starting baby oatmeal with him and strapping him in a highchair for the first time.  By this point, he was able to hold his head up on his own.  We dressed him up as a frog for his first Halloween, right around his 4 month birthday.

     For some reason, I have been drawn back to the day we spent with Jordan at the Children's hospital after he had passed.  I recall asking the reverend how one goes about "keeping the faith" after such a horrible tragedy.   He went on to tell us the following scenario:  Unfortunately, you will never understand why God allowed this to happen.  It is like taking your newborn baby to the doctor's office for shots.  As parents we cannot explain to them why they need the shots b/c they cannot understand us, but we take them anyway b/c getting the shots is what's best for our child. As parents we watch as the shot is given and our child screams in pain, but we are there to hug them and sooth their pain.  Similarly, God is unable to explain to us as his child, why we had to endure such a loss- but we must trust that he had our best interest at heart and that he will be there to console us in our darkest hour. 

    Although my prayers for Jordan went unanswered, I continue to believe in God and the path He has chosen for us.   I hate that His path has included the death of our son, but trust that He will guide us to brighter days.

Happy four months to our beautiful angel!!