I Thought I Knew What I Wanted

Posted on 06/12/2018

The fact that I thank God for my dysfunctional uterus may be a surprise to some but, after 10 years of failed fertility treatments, I decided to take a different path. When I turned to adoption, I wanted a newborn baby. After a short wait I got a call about a four-year-old boy. I was in a work meeting and, in the scramble to find privacy for my call, I grabbed a pen and a pack of sticky notes and left the office. As the worker filled me in on the history of this little boy, my mind was scrambling, my inside voice repeating … say no, say no, it’s not a baby.

As the worker read his case history, I flipped page after page of my bright green stickies. It was not a pretty story.

She explained, “He may be challenging for a while.”

Say no, say no, but the word wouldn’t come out of my mouth. I hung up and sat there wondering what had just happened. I didn’t say no but had I said yes? She said I didn’t need to say yes right away. What could she be thinking? Shouldn’t she place this kid with someone who was jumping for joy to get the call? Two days of pendulum swinging followed that call, weighing the pros and cons. What if I meet him and fall for him? What of my baby dreams? What if we don’t connect? Is this God’s plan for me? For him?

Finally, I called back and a meeting was arranged, followed by a few more visits, then a sleepover, then a weekend. Before I knew it, I was tucking a four-year-old into a giant bed in the guest room. Even after all these years of waiting, I still didn’t have a room ready. I felt like I was babysitting and I took a long time to realize that no one was coming to pick him up. The worker was right – it was challenging for a while, but daytime meltdowns over Hot Wheels gave way to evening concerts singing Justin Bieber – over and over! Fears about attachment gave way to a conviction that he was meant to be mine. I wouldn't trade him for any baby from anywhere – not even one from the womb that had let me down. I'm so thankful he came to me the way he did – otherwise he wouldn’t be him. I’m thankful every day that the word no didn’t pass my lips that day and that this experience left me open to saying yes a few more times!

Caroline is a foster and adoptive care provider with the Children’s Aid Society of London & Middlesex and the mom of two boys. She has a specific interest in the effects of attachment and developmental trauma as it relates to children-in-care.


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