Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's & Test Results

I realize it's been a bit since we've posted anything, so I will update with what little has been happening.

Last week Kevin and I had to get physicals. Part of these physicals involve a full blood count and an AIDS test. It's a strange thing taking a test that you absolutely know will be negative. You'd think I would be used to is after so many pregnancy tests, but it's a totally different story. There are still occasions when I have to have a pregnancy test at the doctor's office. I had to have one before my surgery, and even though I knew it would be negative, there is still this little spark of a maybe that happens. It's probably inevitable. Don't get me wrong, I am not hoping for a positive result. We long ago shut that door. It's just a strange thing to be tested for something and know that there is absolutely no chance of it being positive. I'm not making light of the severity of such a test for many people. I know it's a high stress situation and that not everyone gets the results they are hoping for. It's just nice that in a process that involves so much uncertainty and so much stress, there is one little thread I can hang onto and know that there is nothing to worry about.

Anyone who knows me well knows that there is one thing to stress about when it comes to the physical. You see, I don't do so well with blood draws. It's psychological and irrational, but I pass out just about every time. I've tried a number of tricks to help and while they help to varying degrees, I don't think I will ever be in a position to donate blood. I'm pretty sure the position one needs to be in to accomplish such a thing is in a chair and not laying on the floor, covered in cold sweat, looking even more pale than usual (yes, it is possible).

When it became clear that I was not going to become pregnant without some medical assistance, I had to have a fair amount of blood tests to check ovulation, hormone levels, and who knows what else. I still remember telling the nurse I didn't do so well and having her nod her head and ignore me. She wasn't able to ignore me as she tried to carry me across the hall to lay down and drink grape juice. Sucker.

Speaking of those times, it's rather impossible for me to not think about those months right now. It was 2 years ago, almost to the day, when we found out our final attempt was a bust. By that point we were out of money and our emotions were rubbed raw. Even though we had both decided that it wasn't going to work, having the finality of the situation right in front of us hit us harder than I thought it would.

I want to make something very clear. For us, adoption is not a second choice or a last resort. We could have kept trying procedures. We could have gotten more money and tried until we were successful. The fact of the matter is that going through all that was one of the worst times in our lives and we were more than happy to be done with it. It is physically, financially, and emotionally straining us more than we felt comfortable with. What we want is to be parents, not for me to be pregnant. What is difficult is having an option, no matter how much or little you want to pursue that option, taken away from you.

As we talked about it the other day I found myself imagining the child that would be here if the results came back differently that day. That child seems a total stranger to me, much more so than the little girl who is halfway across the world, sleeping in a crowded orphanage.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Finishing up the homestudy

You know what isn't fun? Waking up in the middle of the night sobbing because you dreamt that your social worker called to inform you that one of your letters of reference was rejected by China for being sarcastic and that you'd have to start over and somehow come up with an additional $700. Not cool.

I realize that this is only a dream and that we are actually right on track with our paperwork, but it still freaks me out. I keep waiting for something to go wrong. After all the crap we've been through up to this point I have a hard time believing that this will go smoothly.

So where are we now? Well, we are waiting on my background check from MN, then our physicals (during which we get our first AIDS test...um...woohoo?), after that we have one more interview with our social worker. At that point homestudy will be done! If we were doing a domestic adoption, our work would be pretty much done at that point (I could be wrong, let me know if I am). Since we like to take the most difficult road available, we still have pages upon pages of paperwork to take care of. I have to get a passport, US immigration and FBI has to do fingerprint checks, we both have to take 10 hours of parenting classes, we have to write a bunch of letters to the Chinese government about why we want to adopt and are not allowed to say anything about God or politics in them, financial statements from a CPA, collect the hair of a unicorn, and so on.

We get a lot of questions now about if our paperwork is done. Extra no. It wont be completed until about June. At times it's extremely frustrating. We just want a child. It's that time of year when everyone around us is having babies. This time, it's nothing but girls. In some ways we are super excited. After all, we know our girl will have plenty of cousins. Some days it just seems like too much to deal with. The waiting, the red tape, the money. Oh the money! Adoption is extremely expensive; prohibitively so, for many people. We'll make it work, it's just going to be a bit tricky at times. I just have to keep telling myself that we can do this and that it will be worth it.