Thursday, February 16, 2012
Today's the day. The one I thought would change something--anything--about this experience.
Today is 18 months since our adoption application was accepted, exactly.
When I reminded my husband of this, he scrunched his nose and said, "Really??"
His point was well taken: it does(n't) seem like that long. When you are in a constant state of waiting for something important, time passes both quickly and slowly--it's difficult to describe.
I figured we would never actually have to wait for this day, to be honest. The oldest sales trick in the book is to tell someone that the thing they want will take X days/months/years, even though you know with certainly it will come sooner. And when it does, you look like the hero.
Not the case here. Other than sending us two Christmas cards, we haven't heard a thing from the adoption agency in the last 18 months. The only thing we have to tell the people who want to know how things are going is absolutely nothing.
For me, my feelings can be best described as a mixed bag. I've always thought that was a funny term--until I lived it.
But, that's what happens when you have to have your feet in two different worlds. The world of moving on, acceptance and finding happiness--paired with the world of still wishing and hoping for the very thing you are trying to put behind you. The reality is that you can't live in both places if you want to remain sane. It's hard to describe how this feels, and I have yet to think of an analogy that applies to this feeling.
How can you possibly expect your heart to feel two completely different things?
I've begun to realize this: you can't. It's not a reasonable expectation, really. You instead need to find where you belong in the midst of that equation, wherever that might be.
What I have come to realize is that I have always led a very conventional, expected life. My choices have always been traditional and have never really gone against what was expected or even accepted. But, infertility has changed that part of me.
Our choice to walk away from fertility treatments was not traditional. Most people wouldn't choose our path, this I understand. I understand (really, I do) why people try everything possible to have a biological child before "moving on" to adoption. I know what it feels like to stand at a very significant crossroad and feel like everything has fallen apart and be presented with an opportunity to make things right again. But, I also know what it feels like to hear your heart telling you to choose the path that is not popular. Our hearts pulled us in a completely different direction. I know what it's like to feel for the first time in your life that it's your life, and you should do whatever you want.
I have always known that people who love us would support our choice either way--doing anything to make our dream, whatever it might be, possible. And I have always anticipated that there will be people who just don't get it.
Until you've stood at those crossroads with your own two feet, it's likely you will never really and fully understand the tsunami wave of feelings you feel in that moment.
It's a death.
It's a bad dream.
It makes no sense, no matter how many times you do the math.
It contains no logic.
It makes others uncomfortable.
It makes you feel inadequate.
It makes you angry.
Despite all the pain and power to pull you down, I believe this: you are stronger in the places where you're broken.
It's simple physiology really: muscle soreness comes from tiny tears caused by exercise or resistance training. In two days, those muscles heal larger and stronger than they were before. Your body actually becomes stronger in those weaker places---and so does your heart.
I am happier today than I have ever been in the last three years. I'm stronger than ever. I'm more powerful and more in control of my life's path than I ever thought possible. My torn muscles have finally healed. I'm completely at peace with my old wounds and my slowly fading scar--and everything it represents in my life.
And all this waiting? It's great, actually. It gave me the time and space to realize that I'm happy with being unconventional. I'm just really, really happy. And? Not caring what anyone else thinks is the actually one of the best feelings in this confusing world of ours.
And that's what moving on is all about.