Wednesday, July 28, 2010

14 Months Old Today

Happy 14 months baby!!!

On May 28, 2009 a very special boy was born.

I looked back to see what I was doing on that day - it was just a regular Thursday, with a day full of meetings and Sara's dancing in the evening. That same week we completed our homestudy update, I started a new position at work, and Chad and I celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary. Who knew that this boy, born on May 28, 2009, would change our life forever.

Here are some of the things our boy might be up to these days (according to what 'they' say children do at this age)...

Says two or more words
Stands and walks with help
Takes a few steps
Bends over to pick up objects
Drinks from a cup
Scribbles with markers or crayons
Rolls a ball back and forth

And according to ALL the moms I know with young boys , he is also VERY VERY busy!!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Filling the picture frame

I posted a story a couple months ago about my mom's new picture frames, where she proudly displays her grandchildren and soon-to-be grandchild too.

When we got "the call" my parents were out for the evening. I had thought often about how we would finally tell one of our most hopeful and enthusiastic supporters. With them being out, my plan would play out perfectly...

So Chad, Sara, and I drove all the way across the city and snuck into their house while they were out. We were only here for about 5 minutes - I replaced the empty picture frame with the face of their future grandchild and turned on the side lamp. Then we went home and waited...and waited...and waited. Finally, at around 11:45pm our phone rang with my mom and dad screaming into the phone...

We had an unbelievable time sharing our news with our family and friends. We are overwhelmed by the encouragement and support we have received with our recent announcement - your comments and celebrations are truly indescribable. It is absolutely amazing that we have so many wonderful people cheering for us. We have a long way to go, but having all of you to get us through and a face to dream about makes things seem not so far out of reach.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

A Referral to Remember

I need to start from last week to tell this story, it's long, but, I hope, worth the read.

As most of you know, referrals began again just over a week ago after a long two month drought – so everyone has been on high alter, including me. From my post last Friday, you would also know that we received an update from Imagine that said that a family could not receive a referral until their updated homestudy had been submitted to Imagine, which ours was not. That same day, we were informed by our local agency that they received our approval letter and would be sending it to Imagine first thing on Monday, and that it would arrive at Imagine by Wednesday at the latest. PHEW…

I emailed Imagine this past Thursday to confirm they received everything and to my surprise I was informed that they had not yet received the package with our approval letter and homestudy documents. AAHHH, where were they??? The thought of THIS being the delay was killing me – even though I had no idea if it would make any difference. I guess just the thought of the possibility of a referral and not knowing was enough to drive me crazy.

I immediately emailed our local agency to enquire where our documents were. They were as surprised as I was that they had not arrived and said they would find out where they were with the tracking number. So, about an hour later our local agency informed us, very apologetically, that they had accidentally sent our documents to the old Imagine address and were looking into how to resolve. WHAT????

On Friday morning they informed me that the package was currently be rerouted back to Winnipeg and we could not do anything but wait for it to arrive back at their office. It would likely take a couple days for it to be returned and they would overnight it as soon as possible, which meant likely Monday or Tuesday. AAAHHH…

Later Friday morning, I received a glimmer of hope. My local agency said they would ask Imagine if they could scan and email our copied documents to them immediately and Imagine said YES. So I’m thinking, why would Imagine want the scanned documents if it didn’t matter whether they had them or not…BUT, our local agency quickly reminded me to “keep my feet on the ground” and that Imagine simply wanted to ensure everything was in order so we had no more delays. Up down up down up down. At that moment, I was sure this week was another write off – and continued about my day. BOOOOO to another week with no news…

Little did I know that behind the scenes…Once Imagine received our scanned documents and saw that they were in order, they immediately forwarded our referral (which I now know was ready on Thursday for us) to our provincial government (this was at about 11:30 am). Our provincial government quickly approved our referral (YIPPEE for them being so speedy) and sent it off to our local agency on late Friday afternoon.

I don’t know if anyone else is like me in this way, but often times when it hits 4:30pm (in MB or even in ON), I know that offices are closed and I am able to let down my guard, at least until the next morning.

Meanwhile, back at home after work, it was just another Friday evening, with no big plans – making dinner, playing in the backyard, getting things ready to go to our friends cabin on Saturday morning, etc...

A bit after 6:00pm, Chad and I were both standing in the kitchen and the phone rang. Chad said “OMG, it’s XXXX (our case worker from our local agency, she was calling from her home, so he could see her name on the call display), YOU GET IT!!” And he backed away from the phone, motioning for me to answer it.

Cautious, but hopeful (a feeling I know all too well), I picked up the phone…and it went something like this…

Laura: “Hello?”

Caseworker: “Hi Laura, how are you?”

Laura: “Fiiiiinnnneee? How are you?”

Caseworker: “Well, I am just looking at a picture of the most beautiful little boy.”

Laura: “WHAT??? OH OH OH!!! AAAAHHHHHHH!!!”…not sure what I said after that.

Chad: “What? What? WHAT????? Is it good or bad???” While signaling with thumbs up and down.

Laura: Thumps up.

Caseworker: “I am going to let you go and send the emails, go look at your son...”

I hung up the phone and screamed “WE HAVE A BABY!!!” And picked up Sara for a big hug.

THIS WAS IT!!! THE moment. The moment we would see the face we have been waiting for so very long. The face I once dreamed of seeing. The face that one day I would touch and hold and kiss and love.

I went running to the laptop and grabbed it; with Chad saying “Is it a boy? Is it? Laura?” I couldn’t even hear him talking.

We three, Chad, Sara, and I cozied together on the couch and frantically opened up the email. Refresh…refresh…refresh…it seemed like an eternity, but the message finally pop up in the inbox…


Laura: “I’m not telling you, you have to wait and see.” Yes I know, torture.

With Chad and Sara on each side of me, we opened the file…

The first thing I saw were his lips – his big, beautiful, kissable lips. Then his eyes - his big, beautiful, sparkling eyes. Then his skin - his soft, smooth, beautiful, almond skin.

Chad: “A BOY! MY BOY!” Tears

Sara: “Is that my brother? We have our picture Mommy!!”

Laura: “Yes, Sara that will be your brother.”

Then we opened the second picture – A BIG beautiful open-mouthed smiling face, with his top teeth just poking through, and the hint of a dimple on his left cheek. And his eyes looked right at us…

And we have been flying ever since and don’t want to land anytime soon.

I will finish with one of my favorite moments. It was late Sunday night and before I went to bed I went to Sara’s room to give her a late night kiss. She had placed his picture next to her, on her pillow...side by side my babies slept.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


That's right! You're reading IT - THE post I have been waiting to share for over 24 months!!!

It FINALLY happened, we received "the call" on Friday evening.

He is 13.5 months old and perfect in every way!!!! He's handsome, healthy, smiling, with baby-chubby wrists - a perfect little man.

I'm in love - instant mother love - it is truly indescribable - I am flying.

Stay tuned...more to come when I can gather my thoughts, feelings, and excitement.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

If only...

If only life could sometimes be as simple as a vanilla ice cream cone...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Day We Must Not Forget

One year ago, on July 13, 2009, I logged onto the forum and read the first rumours of the bankruptcy, which were soon confirmed as fact.

I have debated posting about this particular day, but soon realized that if we do not remember the past, we may forget how far we have come. And as devastating as the tragedy of those first days were, the commitment and accomplishments in the days and months following is what I reflect on today.

The panic and fear that set in those first couple of days still brings chills to me. It is amazing to think how quickly everyone snapped out of the shock of the devastating news and moved full-force into action.

Someone once asked me why I was not angry at S.H. for all she had put us through. And my answer was that I had chosen to funnel my anger into fighting instead – if I spent my energy being angry, I would have become consumed with rage and resentment and never could have accomplished anything…that would have also meant that ‘she’ had won – and I was not doing to let that be an option. Oh, don't get me wrong, if I ever ran into that wench on the street, I can think of several choice words to share with her - and hopefully someone would be there to stop me from pouncing - like I said, I may not be angry, but I'll fight.

Commitment, passion, dedication, determination and a bit of stubbornness all played a part in the cross-Canada movement that took shape over the weeks following the bankruptcy and it still astonishes me at how much was accomplished in only a few months. I find it ironic that the old agency often “warned” us of our use of blogs and forums – cautioning us about what we read and what we posted. And in the end, I truly believe that if it was not for these medias, we would not have accomplished what we had, or as quickly. Hundreds of posts, ideas, and information were shared daily – we were efficient, fast, and united. Letters, phone calls, media interviews, meetings, etc., our voices were being heard loud and clear. I often wonder where we would be if this had happened even 15 years ago, with us trying to do the same thing without forums, blogs, or facebook – virtually impossible I believe.

Not only did the families affected directly by the bankruptcy jump into action, but people all around us made a commitment to help – family (near and far), colleagues, experts, politicians, close friends, distant friends, old friends, friends of friends, even strangers. It was incredible to witness such human compassion.

We, of course, were not without our critics. Those who questioned or doubted, and even mocked, our efforts. I was not without doubt myself - There were moments when I wondered whether this was bigger then all of us and whether we were working so hard only to fail. There is no question that time was one of the hardest in my life. But for others to not understand the consequences and significance of what had happened was hurtful and ultimately helped me to fight even harder.

The efforts of all our hard work began to take sharp and soon we could celebrate a new beginning. I once again could feel our dreams awakening.

And then, the moment we had all been waiting for, only 5 months after our world came crumbling down around us. We fought every waking minute for this very moment - the first referral of the NEW Imagine.

Although we have a long way to go, this day is not to think about how much further we still have, but to celebrate how far we have come.

Never stand between a mother and her will ALWAYS lose.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Well, it will NOT be today for us - UPDATED

We just received an update that said that a family cannot receive a referral until their updated homestudy has been submitted to Imagine. Well, where do you suppose our homestudy update is right now? Oh yah, sitting with our prov for approval. This information is completely opposite from what we were told previous, but I won't get into that now.

What if this week was supposed to be "our week"? I'm just so frustrated.

I think I’ll be drinkin’ this weekend – nothin’ like a little wine to numb the pain. Probably better we didn't get our referral anyway - just think how distracted we would be all weekend long, right?

Come frickin' on already - just give a girl a break...
Just received word that our approval letter is ready - it will be sent out early next week. But this still doesn't help with anything that could of happened this week... I know some people must think I am crazy (or overreacting) for thinking that this week could have been different from any other week. But the fact that I will now never know just doesn't sit right.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Is the drought over? - UPDATED

The first referral, in over 2 months of nothing, was officially announced today (with a few days of rumors and rumblings). I am glad to finally see movement but I can't help but to be a bit cautious...I will keep my excitement on standby until I see if this is the start of a flood.

With that said, I have once again become best friends with my cell phone - touching, checking the volume, opening, looking for messages, even taking her to the bathroom with me (sad, I know). I fully accept that this is an extremely unhealthy relationship, but I'm hoping it is only temporary and that the affair is only short lived...

And another one just announced - XXXXXXX (that is me crossing my fingers)!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Surround Yourself

...with amazing people...and you just might feel amazing for a moment too!!!

Yesterday, after we had been out for the day, we had a voice message on our phone telling us that we had a gift basket to be dropped off - when we called back they were closed for the day. All evening, Chad and I kept trying to think of who would send us a gift basket - it is nobodies birthday, our anniversary has long pasted, or likely a wrong address.

We finally received the gift basket this afternoon - and it was incredible and I immediately smiled. It was from Leanne (and Greg), a special blogger (and beyond) friend I have met along this journey. She received her referral and passed court just days before the bankruptcy and brought home her sweet boy last summer. Although our paths have divided since we first connected, she continues to stand by me to this very day, sending me smiles and encouragement - and now chocolate!!! Thank you my friend.

I often wonder what I would do or how I could continue with this adoption, if it was not for the amazing people I have met along the way - and most I have never even had the pleasure of meeting - including Leanne. Despite this, I find comfort in their friendship and support.

I'm not sure what connects me to some bloggers more then others (I'm sure most of you can relate), but I have attached myself to a small handful of strong, supportive women (I know that you know who you are), who will never give up on me, no matter how miserable or low I become. And I can promise that you can expect nothing less from me in return.