Part 5 Of Our Adoption Story

Do you know what DOESN’T GET part five written?

Looking at Pinterest and commenting on Facebook  posts.

Also?  Those two things don’t get the laundry washed around here, and someone who lives in this house who has ZERO-POINT-ZERO interest in Pinterest, Facebook and Baby Gap online has announced, “I am capable of blocking those sites.  I can shut them down faster than you can blink, and they’ll be so password protected, you’ll never have to worry about not getting the jeans washed ever again.”

And still?

I love Hubs, even though he can tighten down the security on our home computers better than anything NASA can ever hope to achieve.

So do you know what I said in reply?  I said, “Facebook isn’t my problem.   Pinterest is my problem.  I like to look at crockpot recipes that I’ll never make and gray rugs that I can only dream about having in my living room, and yellow, Chevron-striped pillows that I covet in a way that makes Jesus frown.  Maybe you SHOULD block Pinterest at this house.”

And then tonight, I was able to successfully kill another 35 minutes, because OH, MY WORD!  Maybe I want NAVY Chevron-striped pillows on the sofa instead of yellow!  I hadn’t thought of navy before, but NAVY PILLOWS AND A GRAY RUG?  Well, thank you very much; I’ll take six.

Or maybe four navy pillows and two yellow ones AND the gray rug.

Because SWOON!  And ADORE!

(I live in a place of first world problems, obviously.)

And do you know what else?  We need a picture tonight.  There have been too many words and too few snapshots around here lately, and that’s a combination that can give me a headache.

So here’s Thing 2 and the boy.  They adore each other.  Thing 2 thinks he’s twelve; the boy thinks he’s one of Thing 2′s parents.  The boy says things like, “Mom!  I think that bite is TOO BIG for Thing 2!  I’m afraid he’ll choke!” and “Is he buckled in tight, Mom?  I mean, extra tight?  Because I wouldn’t want anything to happen to him.”  And Thing 2 says, “If a twelve-year-old can do it, I can do it, too; I’m tough!”

Or at least that’s what we’re pretty sure he’s saying.

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Now.  Where were we?

We spent the few days AFTER Christmas putting a profile letter together.  And when I say WE, I mean ME, and that’s because one of us types and one of us doesn’t.  I know that it will come as an absolute shock to all y’all, but I wrote a rather long-winded letter, telling our potential birth mama about our little family of three.  I had no idea what I was doing; I simply typed and typed, and then I typed some more, straight from the heart, and I ended up with this gigantic letter.

And I emailed it to Deb.

Deb was at a cabin, skiing, with no internet connections, so she didn’t get it right away.

(And?  Skiing?  HATE.  IT.  I think it’s because I get too cold skiing, and because I never graduated past SNOW PLOW.  I am a skiing failure, and I just don’t care.  But sitting in the lodge?  Sipping hot cocoa?  Oh, I’m a WINNER-WINNER there!)

On January 3rd, when the working world was coming back together and skiers were coming off the mountain, thawing their toes out, and trading their fur-hooded parkas for power suits, the law offices opened back up.

And Peggy called me on the morning of January 3rd and shouted, “I just found your letter on the computer!  Everyone has been gone for Christmas, and listen!  It’s wrong!  It’s all wrong!  We have to get it re-done!”

Because do you know what a PROFILE is?  Well, it IS NOT a rambling LETTER!  A profile is a scrapbook compilation of pictures of your family and short paragraphs explaining who you are, and it’s all put into a plastic binder, so that a birth mom is actually reading something closer to a BOOK, rather than a letter that’s roughly the size of a bill entering Congress for the first time.

I had no idea.  I was new to this.

So, Peggy called me back into the law office, and she showed me what a profile looked like.  And I went back home on January 3rd, and I became a scrapper.

(Which reminds me of Blanche in New in Town.  “Are you a scrapper?  I’m a scrapper.”)

(I told you that Peggy and I have seen that show more than once.)

(More than twice, probably.)

(Don’t judge.)

I spent that entire afternoon working at a speed that our good Air Force only WISHES they could achieve with a jet.  I retyped.  I resized photos of our family.  I compiled them all together in book-format.  I rushed to Walmart, bought a binder, and shoved it all into said binder.  And then I flew like the wind to get it back to Deb late that afternoon, because she was scheduled to meet with B for the first time the following morning.

Whew!

Had Peggy not been paying attention, I don’t know if our little birth mom would have taken the time to read through a long-winded letter.  I simply had no idea that profiles weren’t letters; they are VISUAL representations of your family.  Pictures, pictures, pictures.  And paragraphs about each person.  A profile is a story book; it’s not an essay the size of War and Peace that introduces yourself.

The following day, Deb and B met in person for the first time.

When my cell phone rang late that afternoon and I saw that it was Deb calling, I almost peed down my leg with nerves when I answered it.  I was out of breath; I felt like there was no oxygen for me to breathe when I said, “Hello?”

And the voice on the other end of the line — Deb’s voice — simply said, “She wants to meet you and Hubs and the boy.”

Suddenly there was too much oxygen in the room, and I was gasping, trying to suck it all in.

Deb went on to explain a few things.  She said, “B and I had a lovely meeting, and I told her that I had some profiles for her to look at.  She immediately said that she ONLY wanted to consider families who already had children, because she didn’t want to take the risk of her baby being an only child.  She was quite firm that she wanted brothers and sisters already in place.”

We had jumped Hurdle One and landed on our feet.

“And then, she wanted to make sure that she was only shown profiles from families who would be excited to have a bi-racial baby.  Her baby is going to be one-fourth black, and she wanted to make sure that the families she was considering were perfectly open and welcoming to that.  I told her that you and Hubs were fine in that area.”

Hurdle Two.  Completed.  We were still in the running.

“And then… she took a few profiles into the conference room, where she and her dad looked at them together.  He came with her for support.  And I have to tell you, I wasn’t sure things were going to go in your favor for a bit.  I told you that I WOULD NOT and COULD NOT choose you for B; she had to do the choosing of the family for her baby herself.  One of the first profiles she looked at was from a good family we know in another state, and they already have an adopted bi-racial little girl, who is two.  B came into my office and said that she liked THAT family, because her baby would match the two-year-old in skin coloring.  This family would have TWO bi-racial children, if she chose them, and she liked that idea.  So I told her that this was indeed a fantastic Christian family, and that they would make great parents to her child, but I encouraged her to look at other profiles, just to make sure.  She hadn’t seen yours yet.”

And then do you know what Deb said?  Well, she said this:

“So I gave her a couple more profiles to look at — one being yours — and then I ran to Tony’s office and shrieked, ‘SHE ISN’T GOING TO CHOOSE HUBS AND MAMA!’  So, I just started praying for you.  I prayed and prayed and prayed.”

(Yes, I was crying on the phone at this time.)

“And then B came back into my office, with your profile in  her hand.  She said, ‘THIS is the family!  THIS is who I choose!  The boy is meant to be my baby’s older brother!’  So, Mama, no offense, but she chose your family based on the boy.”

Which?  When it’s all said and done?  Well, it makes perfect sense, because the boy had started this entire thing with his prayers.

“So, B wants to meet you guys, and she’ll be in town again on January 9th.  Can you meet with us that day?”

Hubs and I could.  We would, in fact, have cancelled anything ON our calendars to meet with B that day.

I hung up the phone from Deb, and I was speechless.  Because miracles?  Well.  God split the Red Sea, and Jesus healed a lot of sick people, but those things had happened an incredibly long time ago.  It was hard to process the fact that we seemed to be on the proverbial DRY GROUND, with the walls of Red Sea saltwater rising up on either side of us.

So.  We had five days to get through.

And… I’ve debated even putting this next part INTO the story, because it’s hard for me to admit, but then… it’s part of the story.  It’s what really and truly happened.

On January 8th, the day before we were to meet with Deb and B, I got a bit sick.  And by a bit sick, I mean that I thought I was having a full-on heart attack.  My skin went ice cold.  My skin went fiery hot.  I can’t explain why those two things happened at once, but they did.  Have you ever felt freezing and burning up AT THE EXACT SAME MOMENT IN TIME?  I did.  My skin HURT.  I wanted to claw it all off; it felt like it was on fire, while I was freezing to death.  My heart was racing so hard, I couldn’t breathe.  I couldn’t focus my attention on anything.  I was shaking so hard, I couldn’t hold anything without dropping it.  And we were in the Suburban, driving.

The boy’s friend, Ben, had come up from Small Ranching Community to spend the weekend with us.  We had all had a FABULOUS couple of days with our little house guest, because Ben can amp the fun up to OVERLOAD.  We adore that boy.  At the end of the weekend, we were meeting his parents in Smaller Town, which was almost the halfway point, to return him.  The boys were chattering in the back and laughing like hyenas.  Hubs was driving.  And I honestly thought my heart was going to explode right out of my chest in the passenger seat.

I finally told Hubs, “I can’t breathe, and I think I’m having a heart attack.”

When Hubs looked at me, I guess he realized that HOLY SNOT, BATMAN!  MAMA AIN’T JOKING AROUND HERE!  I told him, “I need to go to the hospital when we get to Smaller Town.  I think I might be going to die right now.”

And yes.  I was fairly certain death was imminent.

Hubs kept asking, “What’s wrong?  WHAT?  IS?  WRONG?”

And I said, “My heart is beating way too fast.  It’s going to blow up.  I can’t feel my arms; they’re on fire and they’re freezing at the same time.  I can’t breathe.”

We drove a little fast.  And by a little fast, I mean that Hubs decided that he was going to get me to the hospital in record time.

I called my mom from my cell phone, and I told her what was happening.

And, do you know what that very wise woman said to me?  She said, “Honey, I think you have given yourself a panic attack.”

A what?  A panic attack?  But my heart was going to BLOW UP!!  It was beating a million beats per minute, and I couldn’t breathe, and FIRE AND ICE!  FIRE!  AND!  ICE!

My mom went on to say, “You’ve had so much this week.  You’ve just had surgery, and you’re about to meet a birth mom for the first time, and I honestly think this is a panic attack brought on by stress.”

So, we dropped Ben off with his parents, and they invited us to join them for a pizza dinner.  I was shaking so hard, I could barely speak, and I LIED TO MY FRIEND, BRIDGET.  Bridget… Ben’s sweet, dear mother.  Bridget… who is one of my favorite friends.  I looked at her and said, “I got really carsick on the trip over here, and I need to go back home.”

Because who wants to say, “I think I’m having a heart attack, but it might be a panic attack, but either way, I don’t expect to be alive tonight, because my skin is on fire with ice cubes all over it, and my heart is going to explode like a nuclear bomb”?

And then we headed for home.  I had to have Hubs pull the Suburban over so that I could puke and puke and puke.

And then I puked some more.

And then… I felt so much better!  My heart slowed down.  My breathing evened out.  The fire and ice feeling went away.  I was simply left with a screaming headache, but I was back to normal.

Heart attack avoided.

(And yes.  A few weeks later, I called Bridget and said, “Um… yeah.  So… I wasn’t carsick that day…”  I confessed it all to her, and I’m pretty sure Bridget forgave me and still loves me, because she’s one fine girlfriend.)

People, in my nervous anticipation of wanting this baby so, SO badly, and hoping beyond hope that B would take a liking to us and give her baby to us, I had been a bit stressed out.  Plus, I’d just had some out-patient surgery for something else entirely two weeks earlier.  Stress?  Yes.  And it all manifested itself in one giant panic attack, the likes of which I never wanted to repeat again.

Except, I DID repeat it, because, as embarrassed as I am to admit it on the World Wide Web, I had another one on Monday morning… January 9th.  Our meeting was scheduled for 1:00 PM, and at 9:00 that morning, everything happened all over again.  My mom came over.  My sister came over.  And after I threw up like a college student on a Saturday night again, I was fine.

Plum fine.

I have never been so afraid that someone wouldn’t like me before in my entire life.  I wanted B to like me.  I wanted her baby.  I was, in fact, already IN LOVE WITH her baby.

In.  Love.  With.  The baby.

1:00 came.

I was fine.  FINE.  I was calm.  My heart was beating normally.  My breathing was great.  Hubs and I had pulled the boy out of school to meet with Deb and B.

When we got to Deb’s office, Peggy showed us to the conference room.  She said, “I have prayed over this entire room.  I have prayed for you.  I have prayed for this entire meeting, nonstop.  I have been talking to Jesus all morning.  I love you guys.”

(People, get a Peggy in your life.  Having her as a friend has plum done me a world of good.)

And then we waited at that big conference table… Hubs, the boy and me.

And we waited some more.

Deb was still in her office, meeting privately with B.

And then the door to the conference room opened, and a little, adorable blonde girl, who was very clearly pregnant, with feathery earrings dangling to her shoulders and a diamond stud in her cheek, walked right up to me without hesitating.  She never even paused in her approach to me.  She never slowed down when her eyes met mine for the first time.  She marched across that conference room, straight for me.  She threw her arms around me, burst into sobbing tears, and said, “I’m going to have a baby for you.”

Part 4 Of Our Adoption Story

So we’re moving right along… on to the fourth part… nineteen-point-four million words written… and just think:  I wrote the skeleton of this story in less than seven HUNDRED words for our local crisis pregnancy center’s fall newsletter.

Yeah.

I might have left some parts  out of THAT version.

I think that we left off with it being Christmas Eve Day last  year.  Out of the clear blue sky, my friend, Peggy, had called me to say that I needed to call our friend, Deb.  Deb, the attorney.  Deb, who’d just had a pregnant gal call her office the day before, in a panic to find a family for her baby before that baby arrived.

I did call Deb.  I went back to our master bathroom… back to sitting on the edge of our tub… and I called Deb, who was at her parents’ farm, getting ready to celebrate Christmas herself.  She answered on the first ring, and this is what she said:

“You think I’m crazy, don’t you?”

What?  I certainly didn’t think she was crazy.  What I thought was that I was having a hard time dealing with what was unfolding, because when was the last time y’all saw the Red Sea start to split in half, leaving dry ground behind?

It’s a bit overwhelming.

Deb went on to say, “I know that you’ve never talked to me about adopting a baby.  I know that I’ve never even heard you and Hubs mention that you’re even INTERESTED in adopting a baby, so you can tell me just to hush up any time here, but I feel like I’m supposed to tell you this.”

Deb went on to say that the Holy Spirit had plagued her all night long, and told her a hundred times over to call me and Hubs, in response to the call she’d had the day before, from a little gal named B.

B, who was pregnant and due to deliver a baby the first week of March.  B, who already had a two-year-old daughter, and who felt overwhelmed at the prospect of having a second, unplanned baby.  B, who was ready to find a family to adopt her unborn child.

Deb told me that she occasionally does private adoptions for families.  She keeps prospective adoptive families’ profiles on hand in her office, and if she has a girl contact her office, hoping to place a baby with a good family, she shows the profiles to her, so that she can choose a family for her little one.

And then she said, “You and Hubs have never made a profile for me.  I don’t know if you’re even thinking about adoption, but please hear me out.  I have argued all night long with Jesus, and He has convinced me that I’m supposed to talk to you this morning.  I’m just being obedient here!”

And that is when Deb told us that she actually knew very little about B, because their phone conversation had been rather brief.  She knew the baby was due in March… early March.  She knew that the baby was going to be bi-racial.  B had told her that she was white, but that the baby’s biological dad was half-black, as he had a white parent and a black parent.  She knew that B had already had an adoptive family lined up for her baby, but that she’d found some things out about this family that she didn’t like, and she’d pulled out of her verbal agreement to place her baby with them.  She’d told Deb that this family had ended up scaring her, and she no longer felt like they were the right ones for her to give a child to.  Deb told us that B was from Rival Town, USA, which is 100 miles down the interstate from Small Town.  B didn’t know what to do, so she’d driven the 100 miles to Small Town, to see a nurse at our crisis pregnancy center, because she didn’t know where to go for help in Rival Town.  That nurse put B in touch with a Christian counselor, who just happens to go to church with our family and Deb’s family.  That counselor (who is a friend of ours as well) put B in touch with Deb, for legal advice.  Deb was prepared to show B the profiles of families that she had on hand in her office… families who had been hoping to adopt a baby for quite some time.  Deb said that Jesus kept insisting that she should tell US about B.

And that is when I poured out the entire story of how the boy had prayed for a baby sister, and how he insisted that Jesus had told him YES.  For the first time, I told Deb how the boy had been hounding me for all of December to fill out paperwork to adopt a baby sister for him, because Jesus was planning to give us one.

I told Deb how I had pulled the boy aside numerous times and said, “Jesus did not tell you that.”

Deb burst into tears and laughter, all at the same time.  Only women can cry and giggle, sob and smile, all at once.  And then she said, “Well, B didn’t tell me if she knew whether the baby was a girl or a boy, but I’m going to make a big guess here.  I’m going to guess that it’s a little girl, and she’s going to end up at your house!”

And then I was crying.

And shaking.

And also pacing my master bathroom.

Deb went on to tell me that she couldn’t choose me and Hubs FOR B.  She said that she represented the other families who had profiles on hand with her as well, so legally she just couldn’t tell B to pick us.  Deb asked me to make up a profile to give to her no later than January 4th, because she was going to meet with B on that morning.  She told me that she would give B four to six profiles to look at — with one being ours — because she wanted B to be comfortable knowing that she had considered several families before choosing one.  She said that when it was all done and over with, she wanted B to know that she had picked the family that she thought was best for her unborn baby.

I couldn’t really tell you anything else that happened on Christmas Eve Day last year; I was in a euphoric haze of being overwhelmed… of being totally stunned.  I wasn’t quite ready to acknowledge that this was REAL and that this was HAPPENING; I was afraid to be joyful about it, because WHAT IF B PICKED ANOTHER FAMILY?  And yet… I couldn’t quit thinking that this was looking more and more like an Old Testament miracle, and WERE THERE GOING TO BE LOCUSTS?  Because I couldn’t have handled a house full of bugs.  I know that I pulled Hubs into the master bathroom, shut the door so that the boy wouldn’t hear us, and gave him the skinny on my phone conversations that morning.  I know that we must’ve finished baking the rum cakes.  I know that I made a pot of soup for Christmas Eve dinner.  I know that the boy felt better by lunchtime, and he was off the sofa, bouncing around in Christmas excitement, begging to JUST OPEN ONE PRESENT!  JUST ONE!  ANY ONE!  I know that my parents, and Sister and her family came over for dinner.  I can’t remember what pot of soup I fed them.  I know we went to the Christmas Eve candlelight service at our church that night.  I can’t remember any of the carols that we sang.

But I do remember standing in the church, singing Silent Night at the very end, and thinking, “Will we have two children for next year’s candlelight service?”

And then… on Christmas morning… because Deb told us we could… Hubs and I told the boy our possible news.

There was ripped wrapping paper all over our living room floor.  The stockings were no longer hung by the chimney with care; they were empty and abandoned on the coffee table.  One of the cats was dragging a decorative bow with enormous streamers around the house.  And that is when Hubs and I looked at one another with the IT IS TIME look.

And then I asked the boy, “Honey, what did you want most for Christmas?”

And do you know what he shouted?

That boy of ours shouted, “I wanted these Legos!  I love them!”

Yes.  THAT was the answer Hubs and I were shooting for.

So I said, “But what did you REALLY want for Christmas?”

And that boy of ours hollered out, “I wanted these night vision goggles!  I’m going to find the Big Foot with these suckers!  Thanks for getting them for me; I can hardly wait to show them to Ben!”

Okay.

Strike two.

I caught him by the arm, while he was skipping through our living room, touching all of his gifts, checking everything out, and I asked again, “But what have you been asking for, over and over, ever since Thanksgiving?”

The boy went stone-cold silent.  His smile disappeared.  He became very quiet… very sober… very still.  And then he whispered, “I wanted you to tell me that we were getting my baby sister on Christmas morning.”

I smiled and said, “Well.  Deb called us yesterday, and she said that she has a little pregnant gal who wants to put her baby up for adoption.”

The boy’s grin almost split his face in half, and he yelled, “I TOLD YOU JESUS SAID YES!  I told you, guys!  Mom, THIS IS OUR BABY, and you were supposed to tell me on Christmas morning about her!  This is exactly how it was supposed to happen!”

And Debby Downer said, “But let’s not get our hopes up too high, because we’re not even sure that we’ll be able to get this baby.”

And Joe Euphoric yelled, “Mom, Jesus has already said YES!  THIS IS OUR BABY!”

So.

We picked up the wrapping paper.  We picked up the empty stockings.  We piled gifts nicely on the coffee table, because my OCD likes things stacked neatly.  We took the ribbons away from the cat, who was thoroughly disappointed that HER Christmas presents weren’t keepers.

And then we went to my mom and dad’s house, where we met up with Sister and her family, to keep the Christmas ball rolling.

The boy walked into his grandparents’ house, began yanking his North Face coat off, and hollered, “Mam, have I got a story for you!”

The boy went on to say, “Remember how I prayed for a baby sister, and how Jesus told me YES?  Well, Deb called us, Mam; she called us.  And she knows a girl who is pregnant, and she’s going to have a baby, and we’re going to get her!”

Mam and Pa both went quiet and simply stared at us.  And then all the color drained out of my mom’s face.  She was white… white as a Christmas ghost.  She put one hand on a nearby chair, as if she needed it for support.  And do you know what I immediately thought?  I thought my mom was mad.  It made no sense.

I asked  her, “Are you alright?”

And Mam asked, “Is this for real?”

And I said, “Yes.  Although we don’t know if we’ll get the baby; Deb just said that it’s a possibility.”

And right there, Mam announced HER news.  She said, “I have been praying for you and Hubs for quite some time to have another baby.  I have been telling God that if He chose to give you a second child, He was going to have to do it in an  unconventional way, because you and Hubs were so solid on not thinking you needed to adopt.”

Well, then.

My mom then asked, “Do you have a name picked out for this little girl?  Because I have no doubts whatsoever that she’s going to end up with your family.”

Yes.  Yes, we did have a name.  We were going to call her Amelia, because that is the name Hubs and I were head over heels in love with.  Had the boy been a girl when he was born, he would have been an Amelia.

And that’s when I began begging God to see this through, so that Amelia would end up in our lives.  I was beyond nervous to get my hopes up.  I wanted that baby so, SO BADLY.  Hubs wanted that baby.  The boy wanted that baby.  But I was still afraid that this baby wasn’t going to happen.

Little did I know that we really WERE getting a baby… and that HE wasn’t going to be an Amelia.

Amelia isn’t really a great name for a baby boy.

 

 

 

Part 3 Of Our Adoption Story

So.

I think we left off when the boy was praying for Jesus to bring him a baby sister, exactly like He had done for his cousins, L and K.  That boy of ours was overwhelmed with love for his new cousin, Little H, and he simply decided to ask Jesus for his very own sister.

Every night, since he has been old enough to do it, the boy has prayed out loud, while I sit on the edge of his bed.  And every night over Thanksgiving weekend last year, he prayed that a sister would arrive for him.

Then…

It was the first week of December last year, and I was driving the boy to school.  I drive the boy to school every day, because (as Hubs likes to put it) I am a helicopter mama who hovers too much and doesn’t trust school buses as decent transportation.  It’s not that.  I actually LOVE to drive the boy to school and pick  him up, every day, day after day, because THAT is when the boy talks to me the most.  If something serious is on his mind, he’s going to share it with me in the Suburban, while we’re driving.  On the way home each afternoon, he unloads everything about his day to me.  When we pull into our driveway and he jumps out, the moment is lost.  He’s off to a pile of Legos, or to homework, or to his friends’ houses, or to soccer or piano or dodgeball or golf or video games, and he has forgotten EVERYTHING that happened at school.

So one morning, during that first week of December last year, as I was navigating a really steep hill that we drove down every day, and hoping that I could get the Suburban stopped successfully at the stop sign at the bottom, without sliding on the ice clean through the intersection, the boy announced from the backseat, “Hey, Mom?  After you listened to my prayers last night, I prayed all by myself without you.”

I have to admit, I was only half listening, because BAD ICE!  And a string of cars were in front of me, and WHY DID I CHOOSE THE MAJOR HILL FOR OUR TREK ACROSS TOWN WHEN I KNEW THERE WAS SO MUCH ICE ON THE ROADS?!  I remember the little Honda in front of me was sliding everywhere, as it tried to stop and not rear-end the truck in front of it.  I was hoping that I wouldn’t be wearing a Honda on my Suburban’s grill that morning, too.

So I said, “Well, that’s nice.”

When a child hears you say, “Well, that’s nice,” he immediately knows that you aren’t paying a lick of attention to him.

Guilty, as charged.

The boy said, “Mom?  Did you hear me?  I said that I prayed all by myself, after you went to bed last night.  I asked Jesus to bring me a baby sister, and He said YES.”

That caught my attention.

The Honda was successful in its stop; I was successful in MY stop.  We both survived the stop sign at the bottom of the hill, and we were on our way.  I remember glancing over my shoulder at the boy, and I said, “Oh, honey.  I’ve told you several times now that we’re not getting a baby sister.”

And the boy said, “Well, Jesus told me YES last night.  He said that I AM getting a baby!”

I asked the boy, “What are you talking about?”

He replied by saying, “I said that Jesus spoke to my heart last night, Mom.  I HEARD HIM.  I heard Him, plain as day.  I asked Him for a baby sister, and He said YES, and I HEARD HIM SAY IT IN MY HEART.  It was a loud voice, but it was just in my heart.”

And that is when my heart almost split in half from the enormous ache of how badly the boy was MISTAKEN.

I told him, “Honey, Jesus doesn’t really talk like that; we don’t hear Jesus like that, and Jesus DID NOT tell you that we’re getting a baby.”

(No wonder Jesus loves to talk to children so much!)

(Could it be because adults have a more difficult time believing?)

(I do believe; Lord, help my unbelief.)

The boy burst into tears, and he said, “Why don’t you believe me?  I asked Him for a baby, and He said YES!  I’m tired of being an only child; no one ever asked me if I wanted to be an only child, and I DON’T WANT TO BE ONE ANY MORE!  I want a sister, and Jesus told me last night that I’m getting one!”

I told him again, as gently as I could, “Honey, Jesus did not tell you YES.  We are not getting a baby.”

The boy cried so hard, he started to hyperventilate.  I’m not kidding.  He sobbed and sobbed and SOBBED.  He cried so hard, snot came out of his nose, and he couldn’t catch his breath.  We had to pull over, because I was crying so hard by then, I couldn’t even see to drive.  I had the boy crawl into the front seat with me, and I hugged him, and I remember saying, “Mom and Dad have always wanted more kids, but I don’t think we’re getting a baby.”

Through his sobs, the boy kept nodding, and he said, “Yes, we ARE, Mom.  We really are.”

So I said, “Well.  If a baby drops out of the sky for us, Mom and Dad will take her, because we’ve always wanted more children.”

And then the boy told me, “Then get ready for one to drop out of the sky, Mom, because I know that Jesus told me YES last night.”

And then we dried our tears.  We used our stash of Starbucks napkins from the glove box to wipe tears and snot off both of our faces, and I drove the rest of the way to school and dropped the boy off.  And then I called Hubs, and I told him what the boy had said.  Hubs said, “He’s got to understand that we’re not getting a baby right now.”

I had to stop at Hubs’ parents’ office then, and when I walked in, I told Hubs’ mother about our trip to school.  She got tears in her eyes, too, and asked me what I was going to do.

I had no idea what I was going to do.

Because Jesus had not changed MY heart or HUBS’ heart in anyway.  We talked later that night, and we both knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that we were NOT to go to an adoption agency.  As much as the boy claimed to have heard Jesus speak to his heart, Hubs and I were convinced that He was telling us NO on seeking out an adoption agency.

So we settled in to December of 2011.  Every single day, as soon as he’d jump into the Suburban after school, the boy would ask, “Did you and Dad go fill out paperwork to adopt a baby today?”

And every day, I would tell him that we hadn’t.

And every day, he would tell me, “Well, Jesus told us we’re getting a baby, so you have to do your part, Mom!  You and Dad have got to go fill out paperwork!  I know we’re getting a baby.”

This went on EVERY DAY, people.

Every.  Day.

It eventually got to the point where the boy would jump into the Suburban and ask, “Did you and Dad…”

And I would interrupt him and say, “No.  We didn’t.”

“But…”

“We’re not getting a baby.”

Then…

Five days before Christmas last year, when I went into our bathroom to take my contacts out and brush my teeth to get ready for bed, I found an envelope on our bathroom sink.  It was a letter from the boy.  He had written it earlier that day, and he’d put it into an envelope.  His goal was to have us find it AFTER HE WAS ASLEEP, so that we wouldn’t have to talk about it right then.

I have searched our house since then for that letter, and I cannot find it.  I save EVERYTHING that the boy writes to me — every.  thing.  I love his handwriting… I love his little boy thoughts… and everything that he writes to me, I have kept…

And somehow, THIS letter… THIS PRECIOUS LETTER… has been lost.  I can only guess that it was thrown out with a newspaper or something on accident.

The gist of the letter was simple.  I’ll never forget it.  The boy had written, “Dear Mom and Dad, Please take back every single present that you have already bought me for Christmas, and please tell me that we’re getting our baby on Christmas morning.  I want to wake up on Christmas morning and know the baby is coming.”

[EDITED TO ADD:  I found that letter!  Just a couple of months ago, I was going through a giant stack of stuff that needed to be filed, and BOOM!  Right there, mixed in with explanation of benefits pages from our insurance company was that first letter the boy wrote to us.  We are extremely organized at our house!  Anyway, I nearly wept with excitement over having that letter BACK!]

I sobbed.  I showed the letter to Hubs.  As parents, we had no examples before us on how to handle THIS. I prayed that we’d know how to talk to the boy… and that if we were really meant to have a baby, that God would bring us one, because I certainly felt like we were not supposed to pursue one on our own.

The next morning, I told the boy at breakfast, “Daddy and I found your letter.   Honey, Christmas is in five days.  Even if we filled out the paperwork to adopt a baby today and got the ball rolling, there’s no way that we can have a baby in five days.”  I explained to him how Sister (his aunt) and her husband had waited nearly TWO YEARS after applying to adopt to get Little H.  I told him it just wasn’t possible to have a baby in five days.

And then I told him, “So we won’t take any of your presents back.”

The VERY NEXT NIGHT, the boy left a second letter for Hubs and me to find on our bathroom sink.  This letter I DO still have.  It said, “Dear Mom and Dad, You don’t have to actually HAVE the baby on Christmas morning.  Please just TELL ME on Christmas morning that we’re GETTING a baby.  And I will help raise her, because how hard could that be?”

I laughed out loud at that last line, and then I stuck that little handwritten letter in the drawer of my bedside table, with every other little note the boy has written to me in the past several years.

And, because Hubs and I are excellent parents who always know how to handle things, we FLAT-OUT IGNORED that letter.  Neither one of us even mentioned it to the boy.

The last few days before Christmas flew by, because when you’re an adult, that’s what happens.  There’s simply too much to do before the big day arrives, and last year was no exception.  I was busy with last-minute gifts and wrapping and Christmas parties and everything else.

And then Christmas Eve Day arrived.

December 24, 2011.  The boy wasn’t feeling well, so he was slumped on our sofa with a giant, fuzzy blanket.  Hubs and I were a little concerned that he was going to be gravely ill for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  His stomach hurt… his cheeks were flushed… and he was WILLINGLY sprawled out on the sofa, doing nothing.

Hubs and I were in the kitchen, making rum cakes.  According to Hubs, nothing says HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY LITTLE CHRISTMAS, better than Captain Morgan shoved into a cake.  I was stirring butter and sugar and rum together in a pan on the stove; Hubs was cracking eggs and tossing in oil and looking like a professional pastry chef at the mixer.

And right there, in the middle of the rum-cake-making, our phone rang at 9:00 AM.  It was my darling friend, Peggy.  I had JUST talked to Peggy twenty minutes earlier on the phone, because I still needed to get her gift to her, and I was trying to arrange a delivery time with her for that day.  I was surprised when she called back, twenty minutes later, because I knew she had her family all gathered around the table for Christmas Eve breakfast.  I answered the phone and said, “What did you forget, Blanche?”

(Peggy and I call ourselves Blanche.  Have you seen the movie, New In Town?  We did.  And we both laughed so hard at the secretary, Blanche, we could barely breathe.  We had been calling one another Blanche since the very day we saw the show.)

Peggy said, “Blanche, are you somewhere where you could talk privately for a moment?”

Okay, THAT threw me huge.  My adrenaline surged… my hands started to shake… because Peggy was using her SERIOUS voice, and goodness!  Why did I have to be alone to talk to her?  I remember asking her, “Peggy, is everyone okay?”  Because honestly?  I thought she was going to deliver some devastating news to me.

I went to our master bathroom and sat on the edge of our tub.

Peggy, who was working as a legal secretary then for our friends, Deb and Tony, who are both attorneys and one of the cutest married couples in town, said, “Deb just called me.  She wanted me to call you first.  Blanche, she’s had a phone call from a little pregnant gal who needs to place a baby with a good family.”

And THAT, people, is the sentence that has forever changed our lives.

I had the goosebumps… I was shaking uncontrollably… I couldn’t speak.

Peggy, you see, knew nothing about the boy’s story.  Although Peggy and I speak constantly and yammer on like two hens in a coop all the time, our December last year was so busy, we simply hadn’t been together for a month, and I hadn’t taken the time to call her to tell her about the boy’s story.

Hubs knew that the boy had been praying for a baby.  I knew that the boy had been praying for a baby.  Hubs’ mama knew that the boy had been praying for a baby.  My mama knew that the boy had been praying for a baby.

NO.  ONE.  ELSE.  KNEW.

We hadn’t shared that with ANYONE ELSE.

Peggy kept saying, “Blanche?  Blanche, are you there?  Are you okay?”

And still I couldn’t talk.

I was shaking so hard, I couldn’t even hold the phone up to my ear.

And right there, over the phone, while I was sitting on the edge of my tub, I told Peggy about what the boy had done… about how the boy was convinced that Jesus had told him we were getting a baby.

Peggy burst into tears and said, “Deb wants you to call her right away.  She’s already at the farm for Christmas.  She told me to have you call her cell number RIGHT NOW.  She’s waiting for your call…”

I hung up from Peggy.  I walked on Jell-O legs back to our kitchen.  Hubs said, “Well, the rum sauce about burned, because you left it on the burner over here!”

I tried to motion to Hubs that I needed to talk to him, quietly.  The boy saw me, from his position under the blanket on the sofa.  He yelled, “What’s going on?  Are you okay, Mom?”

I wasn’t ready to share the news with the boy.  I was afraid of his hopes raising too high, and him having his heart broken.

I grabbed my cell phone and started texting Hubs.  My hands were shaking so, SO badly, I couldn’t even text.  I kept messing up… kept backspacing… kept retyping.  I sent Hubs the text… told him to go read it on his phone.

It simply said, “That was Peggy.  Deb has a pregnant client who wants to place a baby for adoption.  Deb wants us to call her about it…”

Hubs read his message on his phone.  And I will never forget how he stepped backwards… how he had to readjust his position, as he took the text message in.  And then he looked up at me, and he simply whispered, “Is that so?”

Part 2 Of Our Adoption Story

So where were we?

I think I had told you WHY Hubs and the boy and I were a tightly-bonded family of three for eleven-and-a-half years.  A two-foot-long blood clot will do that.

By the time the boy had turned two, I was happily adjusted to the fact that we would not be having any more children.  Yes, I had wanted brothers and sisters for the boy — I had wanted a house full of kids! — but apparently God had other plans, and neither Hubs nor I felt like we were supposed to adopt a baby.  The end.  We were the Three Musketeers, and we were happy…

…even though I always felt like somebody was missing.

When the boy was about seven years old, I found an online picture gallery of children in the United States who were waiting to be adopted.  And there, right smack in the middle of hundreds of kids, was a 9-year-old boy named Nick.  Nick was in Utah… he had been abandoned by his mother… he was in foster care… he was waiting for a family to adopt him and claim him as their own.  I thought his picture was adorable.  I showed him to Hubs, and Hubs said, “But he’s nine.  We won’t know what kind of problems he has; there have been nine years for negligent people to mess him up and hurt him, and can we fix that?  I just feel like the boy should maintain his birth order in our family.  He’s the oldest kid.  If we ever were to adopt a child, I would still want the boy to be the oldest.”

I showed Nick’s picture to my friend, Katie, who had been working in the social work field for years and years.  Katie has helped families adopt; Katie has helped families get home studies done; Katie has counseled kids like Nick before, numerous times over.  She told me that she could definitely help us get started, if we wanted to pursue Nick.  I didn’t even know if we did want to pursue him; I thought he was adorable, and my heart ached because he had no family to call his own.  I showed his picture to Hubs again… and again… and Hubs’ heart was getting very soft towards Nick, so I emailed his social worker in Utah.  I simply asked about Nick’s availability for adoption… what kinds of issues or struggles he might have had… and what we would need to do.  Four long days later, she emailed me back and said that Hubs and I would need a home study done before she could even consider speaking to us.

And then Nick’s picture disappeared from the online gallery.  I was shocked.  He was gone.  I like to think that a family who was already home-studied had scooped him up, forever and ever, and that he was happy.

And that ended all of my thoughts about adopting an older child.

We eventually began to build the house that we’re living in.  We designed the floor plan, and Hubs told me that I could either have an extra bedroom upstairs, or I could have my laundry room upstairs.  Without even hesitating, I yelled, “THE LAUNDRY ROOM!!”  Because what mother enjoys running up and down the stairs with a full laundry basket, seventeen thousand times a week?

None of them.  That’s how many.

At the last minute, I told Hubs, “You know?  It makes more sense to have three bedrooms on the main floor and the laundry room downstairs.  As much as I hate to give that up, let’s go with three bedrooms.”

Hubs said, “What will we use the third bedroom for?”  Because honestly, all of our family lives right here in Small Town, USA; we never have overnight guests who aren’t the boy’s buddies.  And when the boy’s buddies stay, they all throw sleeping bags on the family room floor in front of the Play Station.  There ain’t a single one of those buddies who would say, “Gee, Boy, I sure wish you had a guest bedroom that I could sleep in tonight.”

I told Hubs that I had no idea what the extra room would become… maybe we could use it as a TV room upstairs, and that was that.  Hubs rearranged plumbing pipes, and the laundry room went downstairs.

When our house was still in the framework stage… when just the stud walls and the sub-floor were up… my sister and Katie came over one night while I had the boy at his gymnastics class.  They later informed me that they had prayed over the entire house, just asking Jesus to bless it and the family inside of it.  And then they said, “And we had a Sharpie pen with us, so we wrote some scripture verses throughout your house on your studs and floors.”

I’m telling you… if you don’t have a Sister or a Katie in your life, you should get one.  They’re precious people.

It was fun finding the Bible verses that they had written here and there and everywhere, because they were in obscure places.  It was a treasure hunt to find them!  They were written at the tops of studs… at the bottoms of studs… in the corners of rooms on the floor… on the ceilings… everywhere, in funny places.

On the floor of that third bedroom… the one that Sister and Katie both knew was going to be empty… they had written verses about having more children.

And then blam!  The Sheetrock went up… the hardwood floors went down… and we eventually moved in.  The Bible verses are still there, in Sharpie pen, but no one can see them any longer.

And then I began the lifelong process of hauling heavy laundry baskets up and down all of those stairs!  The third bedroom became a TV room, complete with a sofa and a fifteen-inch television set.

Time passed along.

When the boy was about ten, I began feeling a big pull that we still had a child missing.  I began to talk to Jesus about it, and I simply said, “I feel like you’re shouting NO at me on the adoption front, so if You mean for us to add a family member, then please bring that child to us.  I don’t know where to find him, so I’ll just trust that You’ll drop him on us.”

More time passed.

The boy turned eleven, and I told Hubs, “Listen.  What do you think about adopting an orphaned preschooler from Ecuador?  Wouldn’t that be kind of cool to have a little preschooler running around the house again?”

Hubs was not feeling the pull to adopt an orphaned preschooler; he just wanted a new Cadillac.

My pull was enormous, and so…

…Hubs and I looked online with Compassion International, and we sponsored eight-year-old Anthony.  Anthony lives in Ecuador, and he’s so cute, I could just pinch him.  He needed a sponsor to send money every month, so that he could go to school and have health care available to him, as well as daily meals.  Hubs and I signed on for the job.  We showed Anthony’s picture to the boy, and the boy asked, “Oh!  When will he come live with us?”

Yes.  That was the problem.  Anthony would NEVER live with us; he would continue to live with his family, who loves him very much, in Ecuador, and we would simply write letters to him and pay for him to not know as many hardships as he already knew.  But my heart was with the boy — I wanted Anthony to move into our house, too; it was just never going to happen.

This was last November.  November of 2011.  We sponsored Anthony on November 21st, and we found out that his birthday had been on November 19th.  He had turned eight two days earlier.

We still sponsor Anthony to this day, and I love, love, LOVE when we get a letter from him in the mail, written in his carefully-done, Spanish penmanship.  Since my Spanish vocabulary is limited to the words TACO and BURRITO, we’re thankful that a translator rewrites his letters on another page of paper for us.  Anthony wants to be a police officer when he grows up, and he has asked our family to pray that he could become a bit more obedient in school!

Now, through all of this, Sister and her husband HAD been called to adopt, because it was just too risky for her to have a third biological baby with that Factor V clotting disorder.  In 2009, they had contacted an adoption agency.  They had jumped through the hoops, stood on their heads, filled out mounds of paperwork, had strangers come into their home to see how they  lived… again and again… and then they’d gone onto a waiting list for a newborn baby.

On November 23, 2011, after almost two full years of waiting and wondering if it would ever happen, Sister got a call.  A seventeen-year-old girl on the other side of our state had selected them to take the baby girl that she was DELIVERING THAT VERY SECOND!  Thanksgiving was the following day, and Sister was planning on hosting it at her house.  She called in a panic… she threw a turkey at her mother-in-law, she threw a ham at our mom… she threw clothes into a bag… zipped it up in such a hurry that the clothes were still hanging out of it… she said, “I’m so sorry for missing Thanksgiving!” a dozen times… and she and her husband raced out of town for the long drive ahead of them.

They brought Little H home the following evening, on Thanksgiving Day.  She weighed just over six pounds.  She was the tiniest, cutest, most adorable thing ever.  And what a special time of the year to get her… on Thanksgiving Day, when proper thanks was given for her arrival.

I won’t lie.  I felt a pang of jealousy, and STILL!  Still, I didn’t feel like I was supposed to rush into an adoption of any kind.  The boy was so head-over-heels in love with Baby H, that he could barely take it.  He held her all Thanksgiving night, when she was barely twenty-four hours old.  He rocked her, he whispered in her ear, he rubbed her head, he gave her a bottle.  He was smitten with his new cousin.

That night, just like every night since we could remember, I sat down on the edge of his bed, tucked him in, pulled up the covers, and listened to his prayers.  At the end of his prayer that evening, the boy simply said, “And, Jesus, please bring me a baby sister, too.  I would really love to have a baby sister.  Amen.”

And do you know what I said?  I told the boy, “Honey, we’re not getting a baby sister.”

He said, “But you and Dad could adopt one!”

I just shook my head and said, “We’re not supposed to adopt one right now, and Mom and Dad are getting old.”

Because, goodness!  Hubs and I ARE old; we still remember Aerosmith when they weren’t senior citizens!

On Friday, the day after Thanksgiving last year, the boy prayed the exact same prayer at bedtime.

I told him, “Remember?  We’re not getting a baby.”

On Saturday night of that Thanksgiving weekend, he prayed the prayer again.

I didn’t say anything.

On Sunday night, he did it again.

I just kissed his forehead and said, “Sweetheart, it’s just you and me and Daddy.”

But Jesus was listening to the boy, and He had other plans…

I’m Just Checking In… And… The Return Of A Really Great Story

Well.

I don’t mean to be Debbie Downer myself, but The Plague sort of knocked me flat this weekend.  That was all pretty much expected, because Carrie had informed me that I should just go on ahead and wipe my calendar clean, in order to make more room on the sofa, which is where she predicted I would be.  And my 6th grade niece, Miss L, spent nine days in bed with this stuff, too, as she missed SIX FULL DAYS OF SCHOOL.

So, it came as no surprise that I didn’t even get out of my pajamas on Thursday, or that Hubs took Friday afternoon off work, so that he could run a man-to-man defense on Thing 2 while I napped, or that I had to miss two fun Christmas parties this weekend, because I just didn’t feel well enough to go.

I’m hoping to have this virus beat right smack directly, because AIN’T NOBODY GOT TIME FOR BEING IN BED FOR TEN DAYS AT THIS TIME OF THE YEAR!

Anyway.

The boys are doing wonderfully well, although I’m hoping that someone finds a razor from Santa in his stocking on Christmas morning.

IMG_3254Hubs’ company had a White Elephant gift exchange at their Christmas party on Saturday night, and the boy was the winner of a new mustache.  Of course, he left it on the kitchen counter overnight, so when I was up at 5:00 this morning with Thing 2, I nearly jumped out of my skin, thinking we had a dead possum in the house.

Thing 2 looked pretty stinking cute before church this morning…

IMG_0961 IMG_0963And that’s about all that I’ve got for you this evening, because it’s hard to find something interesting to write about when your left ear feels like it’s holding a gallon of water.

So… what with this being the time of year when so many people are begging Jesus for Christmas miracles… I thought that I would rerun our family’s adoption story this week and next.  It has seven parts, simply because there was so much to it.  That’ll give y’all something to read, while I take a few nights off.  I plan to finish up our Christmas stuff and go to bed early in the evenings.

And… this story really is a miracle.  It is.  We didn’t deserve it, and we didn’t quite believe it when it was about to happen, but for some reason, Jesus picked US and immediately answered the boy’s prayers for a sibling with a very loud YES.  The blessing was that we learned of a little pregnant gal on Christmas Eve, exactly three years ago this month.  Through her and her courage, Jesus blessed our family with the birth of Thing 2.

So please.  Believe in Christmas miracles, but also believe in miracles throughout the entire year.  Jesus is still in the business of blessing undeserving people with them.

Here is Part One of our story…

 Our Adoption Story — Part One

Okay.

I have promised y’all the story of Thing 2.  It’s because Thing 2 HAS a story.  It’s a serious story… a big story… a Christmas story.

(But not the kind of Christmas story where you get an official Red Ryder Carbine-Action, 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle with a compass in the stock and that thing that tells time.)

(Although that is a really sweet and precious kind of Christmas story, because who doesn’t love Ralphie Parker?)

This fall I was asked by a local pregnancy center in town to write Thing 2′s story for their quarterly newsletter.  And then the director said, “Something in the 600-words range.”  Excuse me?  Six hundred words?  I can pound six hundred words out in the introductory paragraph.  Six hundred words limits me.  It’s like telling a baker, “We want a wedding cake for the royal wedding.  It needs to feed the 3,000 guests and look good on camera.  But, the only ingredients we’ll let you use is this boxed Duncan Hines Yellow Cake Mix and a cup of oil.  Good luck.”

Or maybe it’s like telling the engineers at NASA, “We need a rocket that’ll reach Neptune.  You have this engine out of a 1982 Dodge Colt to work with.  Make due.”

Of course I wrote the article.  Of course I went over the word limit, and pushed almost 700 words.  And 700 words couldn’t tell all of Thing 2′s adoption story; 700 words gave the newsletter-readers the story’s skeleton.  The basics were laid out on the page.  The story of the miracle was there, minus all of the little tiny miracles that happened AROUND the big one.

So, what with me being the CEO here at Jedi Mama, Inc., I’ve decided to tell Thing 2′s entire story, with as many words as I need.  And make no mistake:  I’ll use a lot of words, but I’ll do it in segments, because it’s the Christmas season and who actually has time to sit down and read long-winded things when they have to find an ugly, holiday sweater to wear to their staff Christmas party?

First of all, Thing 2′s story is actually God’s story.  If you don’t believe that God is still in the business of performing modern-day miracles, then I’m here to tell you otherwise.  I was one of those girls who really believed that the miracles were very much a thing of the Old Testament, and that Jesus performed some in the New Testament, and now blam!  The Bible was written years and years ago, and enormous miracles just don’t really happen anymore.  Or maybe they happen to OTHER PEOPLE.  But then Hubs and the boy and I found ourselves in the middle of a giant miracle… a miracle that we didn’t really deserve, because goodness!  We’re some kind of sinners down here!  Hubs swears at football coaches on TV; I lied about “having a mandatory meeting” to get out of a function I didn’t want to go to; the boy assured me he’d done his chores, when in actuality, he had not.  We were high class sinners, who didn’t deserve a miracle, and in God’s sweet mercy… we were given one anyway.

So let’s get to the meaty part of the miracle.  I’ll just warn you right now and up front that I am perfectly horrible at writing about serious topics.  I write nonsense; it’s a spiritual gift.  I can write fourteen hundred words on the fact that I did absolutely nothing all weekend long, but I’m always hard pressed to write a full sentence that’s serious and gut-wrenching.  The writers of the touching Hallmark movies do not want me on their paid staff; I’m better suited to the writing tables of Saturday Night Live.

I think the story starts in 1972, when hairstyles were awful and the bell bottom pants were even worse.  My mom’s sister (my Aunt Phyllis) had just delivered her first baby, and she didn’t feel right.  By the time her baby (my cousin) was two months old, Aunt Phyllis had a stroke, and she didn’t make it.  The doctors later discovered that she’d had a blood clot, which had broken apart and caused her stroke.  Understandably, my mother was overwhelmed with grief and sadness; Aunt Phyllis was just a young, newly-married, twenty-something-year-old wife, mother and sister.

Hubs and I got married in 1995, when the hairstyles were better than those in the ’70s, but I still had enormous sleeves on my wedding dress, because enormous sleeves that didn’t fit through doorways told the world, “I am at the height of fashion here.”  I look back on my wedding pictures now, and I still think that Hubs was THE VERY CUTEST groom of all time, but I’d like a do-over on my dress.  But… in 1995, I loved that dress; I loved it so much, I wanted to wear it several more times, but not at weddings.  One wedding in my lifetime is all that I want.  But I really did want to wear that dress to dinner… or to the grocery store… JUST ANYWHERE ELSE, because MY WORD AT ALL THE LOVE I HAD FOR THAT DRESS.

Sad times, people.

In 1997, Hubs and I miscarried our first baby.  It was one of the saddest trials of my life, because OH!  We wanted THAT baby.  Good-meaning friends assured us, “There will be other babies for you to have.”  Hubs and I were sure that there would be other babies, but that didn’t change the fact that we wanted THAT ONE.  THAT ONE was already loved and cherished, and we know that he’s doing well with Jesus right now.

After our miscarriage, Hubs and I decided to wait on children.  I was a nervous wreck whenever I thought about getting pregnant a second time, because I wasn’t sure that I could handle it, if we lost a second baby.  So, we said we’d wait a couple of years before trying again.

We found out that we were pregnant with the boy the first week of January of 2000.  Our New Year’s, New Millennium baby.  The boy was due to be born on September 9th.  We were overwhelmed with joy and happiness and HOW MANY DOLLARS CAN WE SPEND AT BABY GAP?

I had a miserable pregnancy.  Mis. Er. Able.  I was so swollen and distorted, I was put on bed rest in May.  My doctor told me that he needed to get us to 28 weeks to safely deliver at a hospital in Denver.  If we could make it to 32 weeks, I could deliver at a hospital in Bigger Town, USA.  If I could get to 36 weeks, he’d let me deliver here at home, in Small Town.  Dr. S. told me that he was keeping his fingers crossed that I could even make it to 28 weeks.

I did.  I made it to 35 weeks.  The boy was born as a preemie on August 8th, 2000.  He couldn’t breathe, because his little lungs weren’t fully developed, and he was life-flighted that night out of  Small Town’s hospital to the one in Bigger Town.  He was put on a ventilator for three days, and then blam!  He could breathe on his own, and we spent two more weeks in the NICU there, trying to get him to gain weight and keep his oxygen levels up to satisfactory levels.

Two weeks later, Hubs and I brought our baby home.  He was fine and healthy and the cutest child we had ever seen in our entire lives.  We were so smitten with him, we could barely breathe.

About thirty-six hours after we’d gotten home (Yes!  Thirty!  Six!   Hours!  Later!), I woke up to take a shower, and I didn’t feel quite right.  My left leg didn’t want to work.  I was having a hard time standing on it, and it kept shaking uncontrollably.  I called Dr. S. and he said, “I want you in my office right now; RIGHT!  NOW!”

Dr. S. actually met me in the parking lot.  He walked with me into the building.  His face was solemn and serious, and then he said, “I’m going to have you go to the hospital.  I’m pretty certain you have a blood clot.”

Within thirty minutes, I’d already had an ultrasound on my leg, and I’d been admitted to the hospital.  My left leg was purple and blue, from the hip to the toes.  Hubs and I had a brand-spanking new baby, and I was suffering from a blood clot, and suddenly visions of the tragedy with Aunt Phyllis in 1972 began being whispered about.

The differences between 1972 and 2000, though, weren’t just noticeable in fashion.  1972 had awful, brown-and-burned-orange-plaid bell bottoms; 2000 had the unsightly bohemian trend in sloppy clothes that is best forgotten.  1972 had medicines and scientific knowledge… but 2000 had it so much better.  I was given IVs of blood thinners that weren’t around in 1972.  I was given ultrasounds and an MRI that didn’t exist in 1972.

In one of those MRIs, it was discovered that my blood clot was twenty-four inches long.  Two hours later, I was being moved, via a small, expensive, private jet to a hospital in Bigger Town, USA.  Hubs and I, right in the middle of all of that scariness, joked that our insurance company would be giving us Frequent Flyer Miles on Flight-For-Life jets.

The boy, being all of two weeks old, was passed between Hubs, my mom, my sister, Hubs’ mom, and Hubs’ brother’s wife.  He became everyone’s baby, while his mama spent two entire weeks in a hospital 135 miles away from home.

Eventually, I got out of the hospital… on the very last day of August, of 2000.

In October of 2000, I was back in the hospital in Bigger Town, for another solid week.  I got to spend three days in ICU, with a catheter hanging out of my leg.  The blood clot hadn’t dissolved like the doctors thought it would.  All during September and October of that year, I felt like I’d been dragging a dead limb around with me.  My left leg still refused to cooperate with what I wanted it to do; it was still discolored; in my heart, I knew something was still wrong.

I had a catheter put into the leg and spent some time on enormous clot-busting drugs that required nurses to physically check on me every five minutes, around the clock, because my chances of hemorrhaging from my blood being TOO THIN were quite high.  And then, when the clot had been broken up a bit, I had surgery on my femoral vein, because it had collapsed.  The surgeons reopened it, and I have twelve entire inches of titanium stents inside of it now.

If Hubs and I are ever hurting for cash, we’ll check the stock market values of titanium.

And then, people, I got better.  My leg shaped up.  Oh, it still swells, even on this day in 2012.  Plus, my leg is discolored.  It has enormous blotches of blues and reds on it, where some of the tissue has died, due to a lack of blood flow.  I refuse to wear shorts and show those splotches off, because they’re quite a sight.  But, a swelling leg and some ugly spots are a very small price to pay for still being alive.

A very small price, indeed.

By the end of 2000, Hubs and I knew that we wouldn’t be having any more biological children.  We had seen five different doctors — including a high-risk pregnancy specialist — and four of those five doctors told us, “Don’t attempt another pregnancy.  Those stents are in your groin area, and we’re not sure that a developing baby sitting on them might not squish them shut.  If that happens, there’s a fair chance you could lose your leg… and the baby… or your own life.”

The last doctor said, “Well, sure.  Give another pregnancy a shot.  We’ll monitor you like you’re a suspect on the FBI’s most-wanted list.”

Needless to say, Hubs and I went with the percentages.  I bawled my head off, because Hubs and I had a plan!  Oh, we had a very CONCRETE plan, that involved us having two kids, two years apart, with an option for a third child.  Hubs wanted two kids; I wanted four.  The third one was going to be our compromise, after our two perfect babies were born two years apart.

Sometimes it’s funny how OUR plans get trumped and cancelled by GOD’S plans.

Two years later, my sister was pregnant with my niece, L.  She was going to Dr. S. for her pregnancy as well, and Dr. S. told her, “I want to do some genetic testing.  With your sister’s blood clot and your aunt’s blood clot, I want to know what’s going on.”

An $800 blood test revealed that Sister and I have a clotting disorder known as Factor V.  Not V, as in Van or Violin.  V as in how the Roman’s wrote 5.  Factor V.  In a nutshell, having Factor V means that your blood is a bit stickier than normal.  Instead of your blood cells nicely ricocheting off of one another like they should, they like to stick together and have a party.  And when a whole bunch of them have joined the party, they call themselves a BLOOD CLOT.

We also learned that one out of every three pregnancies in women with Factor V end in a miscarriage.  We consider ourselves blessed that out of four pregnancies between Sister and myself (our lost baby and the boy, and her daughter and son), we ended up with three great kids.

(And the other one is great, too; he’s just showing off his greatness for Jesus right now, waiting for us to come see him later in Heaven.)

Sister was able to catch this Factor V condition early enough, that she could take expensive injections of a daily blood thinner during both of her pregnancies.

And by expensive, I mean $10,000 worth of daily injections in nine months.

Insurance companies hate us.

And that, people, in just over two thousand words, is why Hubs and I had an only child for eleven and a half years.  We had talked about adoption; we had prayed about adoption.  And WE BOTH felt that adoption was not what we were supposed to do.  People asked us continually, “Why don’t you adopt?”  Friends made it sound so easy, but Hubs and I both knew that God had clearly told us no on the adoption front.  That much was very clear to us.

We were to be satisfied with the fantastic son God had provided us.  Although it took me almost two  years to get over my bitterness and sadness about not being able to have another baby, I did it.  By the time the boy was two, I was completely, 100% at peace with having an only child.  I had never wanted him to be an only child; I had never planned to have an only child; my heart ached that the boy would never know the joys and frustrations of brothers and sisters.

I continually felt like a family member was missing.  I won’t kid you.  I honestly, truly, genuinely felt that our family wasn’t complete… and yet I was at peace with having one kid.  It was the weirdest, doesn’t-make-a-lick-of-sense feeling ever.  I felt like Hubs and I were missing someone… and yet I was happy to just have one child.

And that’s the HOW COME we were a family of three for eleven-and-a-half years.

Part I of Thing 2′s adoption story has been written.  We’ll see you tomorrow night for the next installment, if I can manage to start getting it all written down in real words.

That Time When I Was Home Sick In Bed… But Really Wasn’t

It’s official.  I have The Plague.  And that’s a bit funny, because I was very determined not to catch it this holiday season.  I’ve been proactive with the essential oils and the heavily-laden-with-all-the-Vitamin-C juice mixes that taste like citrus-flavored Alka Seltzer… but… what with every four-year-old in my pre-kindergarten PE class coughing this week, my gym has sounded like an infirmary for that last PE session of the day.  As much as my mind willed it not to happen, the spreading of the germs by four-year-olds was very effective, because WHAT?  I’M SUPPOSED TO COVER MY MOUTH WHEN I COUGH?

And then…

Well… I woke up coughing at precisely 12:10 yesterday morning…

… and I never went back to sleep.

Not at all.  Not even for five minutes.

People, WHO does that sort of thing?  It’s neither normal nor healthy, but there I was, wide awake and coughing hysterically, and blaming every pre-k kid I knew.  So, in order to just put some mileage between Hubs and all the noise, so that he could keep on sleeping, I migrated to the sofa in the living room with my blanket and fourteen pillows (I am a nighttime nest builder.  Don’t judge me.).  And then I just laid there on the sofa, alternating coughing with a mental list of things that had to be done, while I wasted time doing SLEEP MATH.

Sleep Math involves me saying to myself, “If I fall asleep right now, at 3:12 in the morning, and if Thing 2 somehow magically sleeps until 5:20, and if the wind blows out of the East at fourteen miles an hour, then I could get X amount of sleep yet.”

Of course, by the time I’d worked the logistics out on that one, carried the one and determined the value for X, it was already 3:27, and that changed the answer by a lot.

And???  Do you know how much fun it is to teach back-to-back PE classes all day long when you’ve been awake since midnight?  My Wednesday was full of THIS IS OUR SLUGGISH PE TEACHER WHO IS POURING CAFFEINE INSIDE OF HER SYSTEM AT ALARMING RATES.

Also, I plum dadgum FORGOT the names of THREE.  OF.  MY.  STUDENTS. yesterday.  I stared at one little, blonde-headed kindergarten kiddo, and FOR THE LOVE OF HOLY ROASTING CHESTNUTS, I could not even come up with his name.  Jacob?  No.  That wasn’t it.  Spencer?  No.  It’s not an S-name.  I was at a loss and seriously wondering if I needed to have the school secretary drive me over to the nursing home for admittance into the Dementia Ward, where I would be safe from the dangers of myself and my non-working brain.

Thankfully, I did remember the little fellow’s name, AGES after I was trying to call out to him from across the gym to THROW THE BALL THE OTHER WAY!  YOU’RE THROWING IT THE WRONG DIRECTION, BUDDY!

(In a pinch, BUDDY works when you’ve forgotten the name of a six-year-old.)

And then, the same thing happened to me in 4th grade PE and pre-k PE.  I blanked out on the names of two more students who have been with me forever.  I can’t even explain in words the level of discomfort and concern this brought me, until I remembered, “I have been awake since 12:10 this morning,” and then I was all, “Riiiiiight.  That’ll do it.”

And that is why I was in bed at 5:40 last night.

This morning, my chest still felt like it was being squeezed by weight-lifting elephants, and my cough continued to sound like I was a little old lady from Pasadena, who speed-smokes thirty-seven Camels a day.

The beauty of MOM sick days, though, is that they can’t happen very effectively.

When Hubs is sick and needs to be in bed… Hubs is sick and needs to be in bed.  He puts his pajama pants on and crawls beneath the covers, and Mama loads up the toddler in the Suburban to head to the indoor playland, so that the house can be quiet for Hubs, while he’s trying to rest and recover and not cough his lungs onto the floor for Mama to have to clean up with Bounty paper towels and bleach.

When Mama is sick and needs to be in bed… she is sick and needs to be in bed.  HOWEVER, the boy goes to school and Hubs goes to work, and I end up under all of my blankets, with a two-year-old sitting on top of me, watching videos about farm tractors being stuck in the mud on the iPad.  And then I have to get out of bed, because that same toddler eventually needs a healthy snack of artificially-colored Goldfish Crackers, and if Mama doesn’t intervene with their exit from the pantry shelves, orange goldfish will be gasping their last breaths out all over the hardwood floor, right before they are stomped by pudgy feet into orange powder.

Eventually, Mama will settle onto the sofa with a blanket and a pillow and the Cough Heard ‘Round the World, and that is when the toddler will begin grunting during his televised Spanish class, and his teacher, Dora, will suggest that he leave for a moment to have his britches changed, because she can no longer teach the conjugation of Spanish verbs with the aroma that has filled the air.  And since there is no other adult on the premises, Mama is off the sofa again to get the wipes out.

And… as long as she’s up and she’s washed her hands with soap and water and also strong bleach, she might as well put some chicken into the crockpot, because she knows her peeps will come home hungry this evening.  Never mind that all her coughing and congestion has robbed her of her own appetite.

And… as long as she’s up, adding corn and black beans to the crockpot chicken, she might as well wash a load of darks, because the boy has declared that the only jeans left in his closet are the jeans that he hates.

And… as long as she’s up, adding Tide to the Whirlpool, she might as well do something about the forty-two Thomas the Train engines that have been involved in a massive wreck and car pileup on the living room coffee table.  Once the police tape has been removed from the area and the insurance companies and blue-jacket-wearing FBI guys have walked around with coffee and donuts in their hands, the cleanup of train debris can happen.

When Hubs is home sick in bed… Hubs is home sick in bed.  And he sleeps.  And he sleeps some more.  And then he sleeps some more, because he has no idea that the boy needs clean jeans and that there’s raw chicken breasts in the refrigerator and cans of corn and jars of beans in the pantry that could all be dumped into the slow cooker for dinner, and he never even HEARD the giant train crash, because MAMA HAD TAKEN THE TODDLER TO THE PARK TO PLAY, to give Hubs some peace and quiet.

Goodness, I’m completely full of Christmas cheer today, aren’t I?

In all honesty, the Good Lord created women to just need less sleep than their male counterparts, when it comes to recuperating from The Plague.  And the really good news is that Thing 2 was amazingly well-behaved today, and he was perfectly content to eat his way through an entire bag of Goldfish Crackers, while he watched five hours’ worth of television and threw train cars off the sofa, as he staged STILL MORE crashes.

Don’t tell the parenting experts.  Thing 2 is none the worse for wear.

(I can’t say the same thing about Thomas the Train, though.  Thomas is in need of some counseling for his poor driving abilities and a good body shop.)

But look!  I had THE CUTEST nap buddy today:

IMG_0956Thing 2 and I pulled off a good-sized nap this afternoon… together… on the sofa.  And I wasn’t so sick that I couldn’t grab my camera for a minute, because THAT LITTLE FACE!!  Oh, my!  It does things to my heart!

At any rate, my cough and I are going to wrap things up here at Jedi Mama, Inc. tonight and wish y’all a very merry weekend.  May your drinks all be infused with the germ-fighting Vitamin C juice, and may they boost your own immune systems to enormous heights today, because this chest cold is a doozy, y’all.

(PS.  If you’d like our dinner recipe from tonight, it’s right-smack-here.  It’s quite tasty, it’s one of the easiest meals you can make [You can even make it when you're home, SICK IN BED!], and your kids will eat it up over rice, unless you happen to have a Rice Hater, like we have.  Although the boy could eat a five-gallon bucket of white rice in a single sitting, Thing 2 fakes his own death when he sees that rice is on the dinner menu.  He wouldn’t touch the stuff if there were solid gold Thomas the Train engines hidden in the bottom of his bowl.)

(Also, as a side note, I put the brick of cream cheese into the crockpot about 20 minutes before we ate dinner, because I wasn’t sure about cream cheese simmering all day long in the slow cooker.  I’m sure the cooking experts know far more than I do, since I consider microwavable Hot Pockets to be one of my specialty lunches, but I waited until the last 20 minutes… threw in that brick of cream cheese… melted it up good and proper… stirred it all around… shredded the chicken… and dumped it all over a big plate of rice, even though that is NOT how the recipe read. The end, and you’re welcome.)

It’s Probably Nothing That NyQuil Can’t Take Care Of

I THINK that I’m catching The Plague.  I can’t be certain, because I’m not a doctor.  (It’s because becoming an MD was going to take a lot of years in college, and there were a lot of words I couldn’t pronounce in all the textbooks, and I would NEVER have been able to examine someone’s open, pus-oozing sores in order to prescribe antibiotics.  Majoring in something easy… like LET’S TEACH TWENTY THIRD-GRADERS HOW TO KICK A BALL… seemed more logical.  I can handle the occasional bloody nose when a kicked ball goes astray, but open sores on someone else will lay me flat out in a GONE WITH THE WIND faint, every single time.)

But yes.

I suspect The Plague.

I’m still sitting on the fence at the moment.  It’s not that I actually feel POORLY right now, but I feel tired and also not quite right.  And my chest feels scratchy, and the thought of a hot cup of chicken noodle soup and my pajama pants is very much at the forefront of my mind.

I also just did the Big Haul at Walmart with the toddler strapped in the cart.  We had us some adventures, let me tell you.  Primarily, I’m thinking of the time that a couple next to us was buying cans of black beans.  The woman pulled the cans off the shelf, and then the husband took them and pitched those cans into their cart.

That’s when Thing 2 SCREAMED — screamed like a little girl with his pants on fire — “OH, NO!!!!  HE TOOK THAT AWAY FROM HER!!! GIVE IT BACK!!!  GIVE IT BACK!!!!”

The toddler is two-and-a-half, and he’s already an accomplished tattletale.

I have also hauled everything that we bought at Walmart… all 927 bags… inside our house and unpacked them, which could very well be EVEN WORSE than the actual BUYING of the stuff.

And then I slaved over a hot oven and made frozen pizza rolls for my family’s dinner, because listen.  I have a rule.  And the rule is very simple:  If I have just been inside of Walmart for the Big Haul, in which the entire cart was heaped to the brim, and it is less than an hour before dinnertime should happen… I will not be doing any labor-intensive meal.  The end.

So pizza rolls it was.

I wish that I had more for y’all tonight.  I wish that I had some inspirational story or uplifting message, but the truth is… I just don’t tonight, because I need to lie down and try to determine whether or not I’m really sick.  I’m hoping that the answer turns out to be a solid NO, but my friend, Carrie… who suffered through nearly ten days with a virus last week… told me today, “Clear your calendar.  This virus is a big one and will require you to be on the sofa for DAYS.  It was awful!”

We’ve always called her Debbie Downer.

Y’all have a happy Tuesday.

It Was A Monday

Let me tell you about my day.

It started at 5:15 this morning, because… THING 2.  And Thing 2 is forever afraid that he’s going to miss a sunrise, so he just gets up earlier and earlier, as assurance that he’ll see those first streaks of pink cross the sky.

Hubs took the boy to school early this morning, and then he came back home, bearing an Oprah Chai latte from Starbucks, because apparently his first wife is his favorite wife.  Also, he forgot his laptop at home, so he was coming back to collect that anyway, so why not swing by Starbucks and treat his wife?  I have married a good man, y’all.

After Hubs left for the second time this morning, the Oprah chai and I sat down at my computer to check the news, which translates into READING FACEBOOK and Googling the phrase HOW TO DECORATE A CHRISTMAS TREE WITH A TODDLER IN THE HOUSE.  We need options that don’t include BREAKABLE BULBS, y’all.  I had Thing 2 sitting in his daily Spanish class, with his teacher, Dora.  And that, people, is when I realized that my computer had ISSUES.  Specifically, my desktop was GONE.  Vaporized.  Also known as NONEXISTENT.

Which is why I spent the next thirty minutes on the phone with tech support… otherwise known as Hubs.  He had me clicking here and clicking there, and opening this folder and blah, blah, blah, until I thought my head would just explode.  And then Hubs sighed on the phone, because he understands a motherboard like I understand a semicolon, and he can’t, for the life of him, come to grips with the fact that no one else on this planet can build a computer from the ground up, with two bread bag ties and a piece of half-chewed bubblegum.  Likewise, I can’t understand Hubs’ fear of punctuation.  Venus and Mars, y’all.

And that, people, is why I just powered the Big Mac down, so that it could wait quietly for Hubs to get home and look at it.  I spent an entire day without once looking at Pinterest to see trees that are perhaps decorated in PAPER SNOWFLAKES THAT DO NOT BREAK WHEN CHUBBY HANDS GRAB THEM.  Instead, I cleaned.  There was vacuuming and mopping and scouring and scrubbing.  After I had vacuumed and mopped the living room, I started vacuuming the dining room.  Thing 2 was playing with his trains on our coffee table, but apparently he felt the urge for a mid-morning snack, which explains why he opened a box of hard taco shells out of the pantry and ate them like giant tortilla chips.

So I vacuumed the living room again, because it looked like a Taco Bell had been slaughtered beside my coffee table.

And then, somewhere about lunchtime, I decided that I might be catching a cold.  I was just sitting there, minding my own business and feeding Thing 2 some Cheerios, which is what he requested for lunch, and all of a sudden, I was all, YES.  MY CHEST FEELS TIGHT AND I HAVE “THAT FEELING” THAT HAPPENS RIGHT BEFORE THE PLAGUE STRIKES.

Which is why I spent the rest of the afternoon slathering myself in essential oils and gulping juice heavily-laden with Vitamin C.

It’s also why I’m going to close up shop here at Jedi Mama, Inc. right now.  I’m going to brush the toddler’s teeth, stuff him into his footie pajamas, kiss his cheeks a dozen and thirty-two times more, rock him to sleep, ask the boy if all of his homework is done, ask the boy to DOUBLE CHECK to make sure that all of his homework is done (since teenage boys sometimes just plain forget that OH, YEAH.  I HAD SOME MATH TO DO, six minutes after their mother tells them to get into bed), and then BOOM!  I’m going to bed myself.

Because nothing lets you love yourself more than a 7:30 bedtime, people.  And THAT is something they won’t tell you in college.

Happy Monday.

So… You Think YOU Can Dance?!

The past few days around here have been filled with a whole lot of NOT VERY INTERESTING, because who wants to hear the tale of how I taught soccer skills to nineteen pre-kindergarten kids without losing my sanity, or how I went to Walmart, because we needed milk and Tide and kitty litter?

The only thing that broke the HO-HUM and PLAIN JANE mold was that on Tuesday night, I fought a grizzly bear.  I’m not even kidding.  It happened at midnight, in bed, in the middle of one HORRENDOUS dream.  The bear was after the boy and Thing 2, who were both two-years-old.  I know that this isn’t possible in real life, but in my dream… both of my boys were toddlers at the same time.  And this ferocious grizzly bear was trying to grab them, so I intervened.  I got in that bear’s face with some kicking skills Mr. Miyagi would have been proud of.

I’d like to say that I fought with dignity and well-placed side kicks to the back of that bear’s head, along with stomps to his throat, and maybe even a crane pose and some “wax on; wax off.”  The honest truth, though, is that I fought like a woman whose mascara has seen better days.  I was swinging my arms like a leotard-wearing, aerobics instructor from 1991, pulling that bear’s hair, and trying to bite his ear.

It was the kind of cat fight someone might expect to see in the alley behind a shady bar.

And then I woke up, which is when I realized that all of my fighting skills had REALLY and also TRULY taken place.  I had managed to kick the air, and punch myself into a frenzy of wild adrenaline and very messy hair.  I think Hubs thought the Apocalypse had struck, in a whirlwind of flying covers and pillows.

That probably completely explains why I was awake then, from midnight until 4 AM.  Of course, Thing 2 woke up at 5:08, so I was every bit as well-rested and refreshed as you would think, without a single trace of scary bags beneath my eyes.

But last night?  Well, I hate to admit it on the World Wide Web, but I used the NyQuil recreationally.  I went to bed at 7:14 last night, because I couldn’t keep my eyes propped open any longer, and I slept straight through until 6:30 this morning, because GLORY, GLORY, HALLELUJAH!  Thing 2 slept until 6:45 today, so Merry Christmas to us all!

I feel like a brand new person.

Anyway.

I suppose that I’m taking the Lazy Girl’s way out in blogging tonight, because I’m posting another video of our little toddler in action, but listen:  He’s dancing.  And when Thing 2 dances, people sit up and take notice.

Boyfriend has rhythm.

And?  Well… the boys’ aunts and grandmas really do love the videos, and I love to keep them entertained.

So, without further ado, may I present Thing 2, in all his dancing glamor?

(And yes.  He’s wearing a St. Patrick’s Day shirt in December, but his daddy dressed him.  I can take no credit for the early holiday apparel.)