Before the years are gone and I've lost my nerve...

'Cause this is what I've waited for..

Saturday, October 20, 2007

The whole story.

I've wondered a million times about the best way to tell this story, but I think what's best is to just start and hope that the pieces fall into place along the way. I'm going to back up to about mid-July, when we were in process of waiting on a birth mother from California to decide if she indeed wanted us to adopt her baby. While that opportunity was still lingering we received a phone call from my mom one evening after she had returned home from work, and I could tell by the apprehension in her voice that she had some trepidation about what she was going to say. She had heard about another young girl who was pregnant and didn't plan to keep the baby. Would this be something we would at all be interested in pursuing? My response was not positive. It was more like, "Are you kidding me? I'm sick and tired of hearing about these girls, when none of them are actually serious about going through with it." I did not want to tell Lee. I remember looking over at him after I hung up with my mom, feeling this weight in my stomach thinking, 'Can I put him through this conversation again? How much can we take?'

"What now?" Lee asked me. ( I think he already knew what was up by the look on my face).

"You don't want to know," I replied.


So I began to tell him what my mom had told me. By the end of the story both of us were stinking MAD. We were trying not to lump every birth mother into a heaping pile of indecision, unstability, and mistrust but disappointment after disappointment can give every girl the same face, the same story, the same heart and we were done.

Our conversation was filled with comments like, "Something just doesn't seem right about this one," and, "Of all the options this one seems the LEAST likely to happen", and, "What's this girl's angle? What does she want?" We ranted, we did a little yelling, but as loud as we voiced our skepticism I could not shake this voice that said, "But what IF? What if this IS the one that works?"

"Quiet!" I remember thinking, "I don't want to wonder!" But it wouldn't go away, and quietly I whispered the 'what if' to Lee. I'd like to say that we came to a wonderful conclusion to trust God and venture once again into the uncertain realm of birth mother conversations, but we blew it off. Not completely, but we didn't entirely embrace the possibility either. We just didn't think about it. For weeks. We thought so little of it that I enrolled for classes through December and scheduled a roofing company to come replace our roof (turns out we had hail damage and only had to pay the deductible -praise God!). So when we got the call that the California situation was closed for us we threw this one out the window as well.

I had just finished the last day of my first week of classes, went out to the truck to head for home and noticed that my mom had tried to call my cell phone like 500 times. When I called her back she sounded a little excited. "I just met Marisol," she told me.


"Yeah, Cristina brought her into the clinic today and they're wondering whether or not we're going to do this adoption!"


"Marisol would like to meet you. I did pull up your blog site so she could at least see your picture, but how soon do you think you could come down to the cities to meet?"

"What?!?" ( I know, a bit redundant, but I was a little shocked. After all, hadn't this one seemed the LEAST likely to happen?)

After I stammered out a few unintelligible things we decided to try to meet on Monday, Labor Day. I didn't have classes, and most people (minus Lee) wouldn't be working. My mom confirmed with Cristina that it would indeed work for them and there we were, set to meet.

I drove down to the cities on Monday morning, but before I left had that great conversation with God (check my early September entry for details), and spent the afternoon at my parents' house making flash cards for my nursing class trying not to let the anxiety take over me. I remember standing at the kitchen window, the same one my mom has stood at for countless years waiting for countless people to arrive, watching as Marisol came walking up to the door. She didn't look obviously pregnant, and I had to fight the urge to doubt her situation. She was very sweet, but very timid and all the while I kept thinking, "One wrong move, Tiffany, and you'll have her running out to the car!"

While Cristina assisted my mom in the kitchen Marisol and I found ourselves sitting together in the living room. Me, with my extremely limited Spanish, and Marisol with her limited English managed to actually have a conversation. My sweet Dad caught a picture of us, and it turns out to be the only picture of Marisol we have, so I have to treasure that picture forever even if I do look like a horse in it.

At dinner she sat next to me and I kept shooting glances at her belly, wondering about the baby boy that was there. After dinner she excused herself and Cristina got a chance to fill me in on how they met. I'm sharing it, because I feel like I need to, like God wants it to be told. I do not however want it to communicate negatively in any way about Marisol. Here's my paraphrase of Cristina's story that she told to me that night:

I was working at Hennipen County Medical Center one day and was reaching the end of my shift. I had 15 minutes left before I was supposed to clock out. Now my job only pays in 4 or 8-hour increments, no partial hours or anything. So when a staff member came into the room asking for an interpretor I almost didn't take it, knowing I only had a few minutes left of my shift, but no one else offered, so I did. I didn't realize why I was supposed to be there until I started interpreting for this young girl. She was there to get a referral for an abortion. As the nurse took all her measurements I knew I was supposed to intervene. After the information was collected about how far along Marisol was in her pregnancy the nurse told her that she had one day left before it would no longer be legal to have an abortion in the state of Minnesota. After talking with Marisol the nurse left to go call the abortion clinic across the street to make an appointment for the following morning. I could not stay silent. 'Don't do it, Marisol. Don't kill your baby. God will bless you if you spare the life of your child. You cannot do this- I'll help you. There are lots of people who would love to adopt your baby- don't go through with this abortion.'

I convinced Marisol to come home with me, that we would talk it out and come up with a plan. She agreed to talk with me more about it. I realized that I could have lost my job for intervening like I did, but I knew that Jesus would protect me for doing His will. I told Marisol to meet me outside the front doors because I had to go into the employee area to clock out and get my purse. So I went and did that, grabbed my stuff and went outside, but Marisol was nowhere to be found. She was gone, like gone forever. At that moment everything completely drained out of me and I wept and said, 'God, I did my best to save that baby,' and I prayed for the impossible to happen. I grabbed my car keys and headed to where my car was parked. I was just about to get in when something caught my eye. It was Marisol and she was running.......running back to the front doors where we were supposed to meet! To this day I do not know what made her come back, but she got in the car with me, came to my house and made ME dinner. We talked for hours and I agreed to help her find a family for her baby.

A few days later I went to my chiropractor's appointment and there I overheard Jane talking about your situation to somebody else. Goosebumps went over my entire body and I went up and talked with your mom, saying 'You wouldn't believe this! I just agreed to help this young girl find a family to adopt her baby.........and here we are!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Our boy is HOME!!!

Wow!!! I cannot even begin to explain the utter amazement at what God has done. I'll go into more details later, but wanted to post pictures as soon as we got home.

Jeremiah Nathan Gear was born at 9:52am on Sunday, October 14 (7lbs 19.8" long). He is absolutely beautiful. The most amazing thing is this: I do not remember a beginning of feels like he's always been with me.

Look!!! Look at what God has done!!!

We received a card this afternoon that says this:

Your SON is here not by chance, but by God's choosing.

His hand formed him and made him the person he is.

God compares him to no one else- he is one of a kind.

Your son will lack nothing that God's grace can't give him.

God had allowed your son to be here at this time in history to fulfill

His special purpose for this generation.-Roy Lessin-

"Everyone shall stand in awe and confess the greatness of the miracles of God...they will realize what amazing things He does." Psalm 64:9

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

A new due date.

It appears that after meeting with a doula, Marisol's due date is more like the 14th than the 10th. Like a friend of mine said, "You can't change those things NOW!!!" But so it seems that our anxious, 'nothing-will-cure-this-itch-except-going-to-the-hospital' time continues. Fortunately I've had plans for this week that I've been able to continue in, but poor Lee has had nothing to do to pass the time except play Halo, which I am very quickly becoming tired of. There's this beeping sound as the character's energy field is recharging that I could go without hearing for the rest of my life. (Trust me, I already know that I know too much about the game).

But like I said, poor Lee has had nothing to occupy himself with. It's been rainy for weeks now, and the short glimpses of clear skies are spent walking the dogs who, I swear, sense the anticipation in the air. I've never seen them so pent-up, so needy! Walking them is good exercise and a great excuse to get out of the house, but even that doesn't come close to scratching the itch.

We packed a few travel bags and have them sitting on the bedroom floor. I can't take them to the car just yet because I'm partially living out of them, and what else would I have left to do? At least I can pack and repack a bazillion times if I need to find something to do, but once they're in the truck? Well shoot, you can't undo that.

In this wait for the inevitable rush of panic (Lee says, "No panic, Tiffany...." But I say, "Who are we kidding?"), we find ourselves saying to each other, "What should we do with these last few days of 'just us'?" It's hard to believe that from here on out it will never be just the two of us and to be honest, it's bittersweet. We haven't yet tasted the joy of parenthood and family that we've been longing for, but we're not quite ready to change what we've been. I think who we are is worth hanging onto during our venture into parenthood, and I think we're just stubborn enough to see it through. We continue to be challenged with enjoying these last days together all the while thinking, 'For crying out loud, phone. Ring already!'

Wednesday, October 3, 2007


October 03, 2007
From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.
Luke 12:48

I'm not exactly sure how I feel about this verse today. As I belted in the base to the car seat I thought about how odd it felt to climb on up on that awkward thing while I tried my hardest to tighten the strap. It reminded me of how many times I had watched my siblings and friends do exactly that while I thought, "Is it really necessary to climb in there? Come on...." Go ahead, laugh....I admit I'm a total novice. Apparently watching people does not automatically make you a professional when it comes your time to do it.

But what struck me about the experience was a note I found in the depths of my truck. I had written it at work because on the back of the paper is the cash register report for closing the shop. It obviously was sometime in the spring, before May:

'Yesterday was a dust day. As a Christian I place so many expectations of perfection on myself, forgetting time and time again that anything good I do is only because Christ resides in me. He remembers that we are but dust.....

Sometimes He gives us days like yesterday to remind us of just that. There was actually nothing about yesterday that should have aroused such deep emotion in me, but whoa, I was a mess. At work I distracted my mind with lattes and sudoku, but I had woken up in such a funk that nothing could really keep my feelings of impending doom at bay. I honestly believed we were going to get a phone call saying this whole thing had been called off. Last night we went to dinner at our friends' house and I got a chance to hold a 5 week old baby. It was weird! I felt totally uncomfortable; partly because someone just walked up to me and asked if I wanted to hold him when I didn't even know who he belonged to, and partly because for some odd reason my mind has not been able to actually envision a child at the end of this process....'

And there the note ends. It looks like I may have written more but I haven't found the other half yet. I think the thing worth mentioning here is the state of mind I had then versus what I find myself in now. I don't have any feelings of impending doom. Anxiety? Heck, yes. Occasional panic? Sure, that too. Excitement? Absolutely, but impending doom? No. I keep trying to decipher if I'm feeling any of that, but it seems like the doubting voices have been silenced. I thought in church on Sunday about the possibility of this whole thing going sour as well. Before, thoughts like those would have immediately been followed with the, "Don't you dare, God"s and the "I don't know what I would do if this didn't work out"s. But on Sunday, when the thought crossed my mind, it lacked devastation. What in the world!?!

So how in the world does this relate to the passage in Luke? As emotionally complicated and mentally exhausting as this whole process has been, I feel like it is also something with which God has entrusted us. Like the memorable dialogue in the movie, Evan Almighty, if we ask God for patience does He just give us patience, or does He provide an opportunity for us to be patient? If we ask God for courage does He just give us courage, or does He provide an opportunity for us to be courageous? So each experience, each struggle has been entrusted to us, but the purpose of them is not in just reaching the end. It's preparation for more.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Start Packing.

Wow...October is here already. Only 9 days until the baby's due date! I was thinking this morning that I should probably pack a few bags, especially the baby's things, in case we don't have to wait until the 10th. We've had everything just stacked in the nursery closet for months and should probably start preparing ourselves.

I got a phone call from the agency this morning. They did receive Marisol's paperwork and it sounds like they just need a few more pieces of information from her. They would like to get together with her at least once before the birth to go over things, but with only a little over a week left I'm thinking they may only be able to see her once, if that.

The agency is sending us our forms to sign and then we will be sending them the retainer for services. I'm hoping that they won't need to spend $4500 over the next week! Whatever they don't spend will be returned to us, and that money will go right back to the bank, so I'm praying that the agency will work efficiently.