Friday, July 3, 2009

Diving

So. Here we are. It's the day before we leave. And this time, we haven't gotten ANY phone call from the agency and instead of me in the curled up sniffling fetal position in the recliner as I watch my furious husband man the phones to Africa and the CDC in Atlanta....I am surfing back and forth through the house, up and down, packing, sorting, zipping, counting.

Duffel: zip. Laundry: fold. Shoes: find. Toddler: kiss. List: check.

It is a huge undertaking to travel, anytime, really... as a mom. With a trip where the family is split, you have to also plan and sort and prep for the kids left behind. You make the daily surprise bags with little happy nothings in them that will buy the babysitter a few extra minutes of happy busy time and you draw hearts on them from mom. You make these and set them aside, one per day per kid, no matter how old. You prep the babysitter notes and backups and house. You look at the garden and hope, again, that it doesn't die while you're gone. Then you turn to your packing, again, and you sort the clothes and backpacks and meds and books. And, inevitably, something is forgotten. Every time. {Ok, me...not SO organized after all}

And it's so easy, this time, so jumping giddy after so long waiting, to get swallowed up in this busy pack-o-rama. But last night, it hit me. Right about dinnertime, my stomach knew it before I did......we are about to plunge.

We are diving off a cliff.
That's sure what it feels like anyhow.

I've done that before, literally, on a baby cliff in northern California as a teen. It was what? Twenty feet high? Surely nothing. But I remember standing on the edge, trembling, afraid to stand too close, and feeling this same sick in my stomach. It looked so fun and everybody had splashed safely into the river. They didn't bash open their heads, they came up smiling...all good. Way back forever ago, in the dark ages when I stood on that cliff, a cute guy was standing by the edge and finally helped talk me into the jump. So, finally, feeling like a fool and with a great lurch in my stomach as the butterflies flew inside, I jumped. Not dove gracefully, mind you, but jumped feet first with a scream all the way down.
Obviously, I survived, with my dork factor intact, and in fact increased, but I did it. And I was glad.

I tell you all this to say that I have those exact same feelings now. I have looked over the edge, and I have a dear handsome husband standing next to me, encouraging me. But even so, I have those same butterflies swirling inside my stomach with both the excitement and the fear of jumping off this cliff. That may shock some of you, after all our ranting raging pining away to go get our girl.

But there you have it.

Every single time I have a child: by labor and c-section, by racing in planes or automobiles to go get them, near or half a world away, I have to fight off a bit of terror.
Because life changes, the universe shifts.
I know, I know, it already did.
But now, I am really, truly, leaping into the abyss of the new, the shifted.
And it's a little scary.

So I'm almost ready to go. Our bags are packed, almost. Our goddaughter arrives in the early morning to drive us to the airport. My toes are hanging on the edge. My husband is holding my hand to help my courage and I'm looking over the rim of the world, swallowing my fear and knowing I will make a fool of myself as I jump. I don't really know everything that will meet us, except a girl on the other side of the world....who might be just as nervous as me.

19 comments:

Guard Wife said...

Happy and safe travels! I'm so glad this moment has come.

And, I'm also appreciative of your honesty and candidness about your feelings at this moment.

We are ready to submit our dossier to adopt a kindergarten aged little girl, a waiting child, and I have those moments where I literally freeze and think, "Wowza! This is really happening!"

I have seen the videos of your sweet girl & I'm betting her nervousness (and yours) will melt the moment you lay eyes on each other.

Jen said...

I have gotten that same nervous feeling before each of my labors...scared...life is about to change feeling. What if I am not a good mother to this child feeling... I did not know other people got that feeling, too.

We will be praying for you every day. Safe travels, friend.

Robin said...

Thanks for you honesty...I think if we were all honest with ourselves, we would admit to feeling exactly what you are feeling. Not even home a week, the feelings of being overwhelmed and fear still exist.

Your entire family will be in our prayers as your travel, meet your beautiful Marta, and your return trip home. Much love, Robin

Jake said...

Ahh, honesty. So refreshing.

Jennifer said...

"The universe shifts"....that is such a perfect phrase. I keep thinking, "My life will never be the same now". Stomach jumping,heart thumping, love expanding....
Have a wonderful, safe trip! Blog or Facebook if you can, I'll be there next week!
love,
Jenny

chasingsaints said...

Safe and blessed travels, Coffeemom! Will be praying for you all and can't wait to read more in the days to come.

With a smile like Marta's to welcome you, I have a feeling you are about to step into something not just new, but wonderful.

DrewCareyShow said...

Thinking about you tonight and praying for you too. You will be magnificent! We'll give you a call when you're home! Much much love to you all! XOXO Carey

Wolfemom said...

So glad the girl... across the world... has YOU!! Know you'll be in my prayers. Oh how I remember your anxiety over all of it. Praying for all of you.. enjoy every minute!

Tara said...

you will be wonderful, you have done this before and are excellent! God is walking before you, your time has come, trust and enjoy every minute, we are praying!!!!go get that girl!!

Adoption Cubed said...

Safe travels! I know you are a bundle of emotions. It is a ride, but a good one. I know you will meet everything that awaits with great thought, with great faith, with great love. Enjoy your time in Ethiopia! You will be in our prayers.
Rebecca

J, A and T said...

I just saw your wonderful news!!!!! so happy for your family.
Safe travels!

The Roberts Family said...

A new beginning .... we're all cheering you on ... not just while you travel, but through the whole journey. Marta is ready for her family ... she's ready for this new chapter ... she's ready for you, her momma. I can picture her sitting with you and you helping her with her hair (bet she has some great tips to offer!! -smile-) and getting to know one another. Be patient ... with each member of the family unit ... and yourself. You're all gonna be okay. Much love!!, Shelly

Sara said...

But the amazing thing is that you are brave enough to take the leap. You are not sitting on the edge wondering what if, or should I. You gather up your courage and you go for it and that is incredible!

Happy travels to you.

solas4me said...

Thinking of you all knowing that nervousness, excitement, and the unknown thoughts are going knowing.
Praying that our God of perfect peace will comfort you all and keep you safe in your journey.

Justin

msl said...

Thinking of you!! Safe and Joyful travels to your daughter!!!

"Indescribable" said...

It's all about the 'I can't turn back or go forward feeling' yet you know you're going forward b/c this is what you're all about! Love the hand holding, soft spoken words of encouragement, toes near the cliff visual!

Love the leap in faith - or the dive off the cliff - however it's described!

Enjoy!
Maria

Tracy said...

Bon voyage and a safe return!

I can't wait to hear about becoming a forever family with Marta!

Eastiopians said...

I love this post.

Colleen said...

Perfectly said!