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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

And She's Pregnant....

The email came late this afternoon.  About the 5th word in....pregnant.  The end of the paragraph "would you and chad consider another adoption?"  We knew it was pretty likely this event would occur at some point.  But right after I wrapped my mind around never being pregnant again because let's face it, my marriage is less than ideal and it's actually really great having two toddlers that can dress themselves, go to the movies and sit through it, are only a couple years away from kindergarten and so many other things that make life easier.

But today, today I have to start planning and thinking about whether or not, if the opportunity comes up, to adopt AJ's brother or sister when they are born this fall.  With her first two kids and then the birth of AJ's sister the year after he came to us, she fought to keep those kids.  Not fight in the way I would or she should have, but in her mind she thought she could take care of them and that the state would let her do just that.  This is different though, I can hear the fear and how scared she is in the email.  She takes medication for depression and probably other things, but she had to stop taking those because of risk to her fetus (this is what she told me, I haven't researched it so just take it with a grain of salt) and she had a breakdown.  Now the state is monitoring her entire pregnancy and will decide when the baby is born what they will do.  She doesn't want the baby going to a foster home because she wants to make sure her baby is safe.  I'm not going to bash her about the whole concept of safe since she is not a poster child for a healthy pregnant woman, but I know not every foster home is like how ours was.  WAS.  We aren't even actively licensed, we said that chapter of our lives was closed minus this possibility.

Here's the thing though (for anyone reading this and thinking we should just say no to the possibility of adoption), when you adopt a child from foster care and they become your child, the same as a child born from me, their family in a way becomes your family.  We aren't making a decision about just fostering any child, we are making a decision about adopting a relative.  One thing that always made me upset about AJ's biological family was that not a single person was asking to take him and his older brother and only after we offered to take his baby sister did his Aunt step forward because it was a girl.  But now we are those relatives, so how does it make it any better for us to turn our backs like they did.  I remember deciding we weren't going to take his sister.  I had a really rough first year with two babies and post partum depression and fighting to keep AJ and that whole mess. But the  next morning after our decision, my heart literally hurt and I knew that wasn't the right decision and so we said we'd take her and it felt right.

She isn't due until October, there is no guarantee the state will take the baby, but let's be honest, she's lost 3 kids and the state is already tracking her, it's not looking good for her.  Here is what I keep thinking over and over:

What if she doesn't stay clean and sober?  What if this is finally the baby that IS affected in a major way by those actions?

Will the state allow her another 2 years to get her act together after the baby comes to us?  Or will she terminate rights right away?

Could/should we just attempt a private adoption, here it takes less than a month but there would be no stipend for daycare?  But in the end $10,000 stipend a year versus the agony of having a baby with us for over a year just to just to jump through the foster/adopt hoops and possibly lose the baby in the end? 

Are my kids old enough to understand all this if one day we were to go and pick up a baby?

I said I was done having kids, what if she just keeps having more, will this ever end?

What if we do want to keep the baby, the baby is born and she decides that another family member fights us for the baby (if it's a girl, what if the aunt wants another girl??)?

Part of me just wants to relax and know that what is suppposed to happen will happen regardless of any worrying and planning I do in the coming months so just live in the moment.