Bring Bennet Home

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

16 Months Letter

Tucker Gordon,
You are just growing up so fast! I swear everyday you turn into more of a little boy then my baby. You are so independent and adventurous. I haven't written you a letter in a long time and I just wanted to document all the fun things you're doing these days. You are truly a joy to so many.
You LOVE to be outside, dirt, messes, holes, rocks, grass and sticks as much as any toy you own. Your favorite toys include cars/trucks, balls, books and your Monkeys. You bring us books to read about a million times everyday. I hope you always love books! Brown Bear is still your favorite. You also like a book you have that's full of pictures. Your favorite pages are of trucks and animals.
You like to figure things and people out and still watch new people with a careful eye. When I'm holding you and someone you're not sure about speaks to you you shyly lay your head on my shoulder until they go away. You've figured out that if you pretend to be shy they won't keep pestering you. Its so funny because as soon as they walk away your head pops up and the jabbering continues.
You are SUPER vocal and loud. I don't notice how loud you really are until we are out in public and then it's almost embarrassing sometimes. You can say a lot of words now and your still signing several. You can count to three, say, "wow, wow, wow," say "O-S-U" complete with your guns (Daddy is so proud!) and you know a lot of animal sounds. You are just so smart. I can tell you understand more and more everyday. It's so fun to watch you learn to communicate.
Discipline has come to be part of your world, and as much as you hate it, you really are doing very well! You weren't responding much to spanking your hand so now you visit the time out corner every once and a while and you have learned to stay put until Momma comes to get you. You are usually crying during your time there, but you do stay which is a huge accomplishment. You also look at things you know are off limits and then look at me and shake your head no-no and walk away if I say that's a no-no. Our two hardest lessons right now are not throwing your sippy cup down when you're done drinking and going to sleep on your own. Momma and Daddy failed at sleep training when you were little because it just broke our hearts and you were REALLY stubborn. But we are committed this time and you are doing better everyday. You only cry for about 10 minutes before you go to sleep on your own. In the middle of the night you still cry for closer to a hour, which is AWFUL for all three of us! But I think in a few more nights you'll have it down...I hope.
You walk, run, spin circles, wiggle, dance, shake your booty, jump and crash all on command. You have started coming to get me or your Daddy by the finger and lead us where you want us to play with you. Every time you do it, it just melts our hearts. It's so sweet to feel your little hand wrapped tightly around my finger.
Another favorite thing you're doing is giving lovies. You come and want in our laps and then you nuzzle in and grunt like we do until we hug you tightly. You also freely give kisses, and sometimes you'll do that on command too. But nothing beats you grabbing my face with your fat hands and coming in for the kill! Love those moments.
You LOVE water, but hate your floaty. You want to be free so bad! You do still love your kiddie pool that you can get in and out of all by yourself. Bath time is still a highlight of your day, although you could do without having your hair washed. You're not a huge fan.

You also really like TV/movies these days. Your favorite shows are Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Handy Manny. Your favorite movies are Toy Stories and Cars. I tried to have you watch something else in the car a few weeks ago and you hated it. You cried until I put Cars back in. It's amazing how well you watch those things and how attentive you are. We have to make sure you don't watch too much, but you sure seem to like it!
You have had a haircut about every six weeks since your were five months old. Your last one was number 9 and every time you get one you just look more like a little boy. Last time Aunt Cassie cut around your ears and your neckline and I swear you looked so big!
You weigh 27.13 lbs. Your wearing size 5 diapers and size 18-24 months clothes. Your shoes are size 5 extra wide.
Your favorite foods are fruit and carbs! You love bread and noodles like no ones business. Grapes and bananas are your favorite fruits. Turkey is about the only meat you'll eat plain. You'll eat others if I sneak them in, but not a lot of them. You like green beans and potatoes as far as veggies are concerned. Really anything you can feed yourself you'll at least try. You get so frustrated if there's something we need to feed you, unless is sugary (like ice cream, snowcones or cake) then you'll happily eat if off our spoon.
You are most definitely still a Momma's boy! You also love your Daddy, Granna, Aunt Chelsie & of course Emrie. You guys are such turds to each other to love the other one as much as you do. Em is going through a big kid phase and sometimes you following her around gets on her nerves, but she takes great care of you.
The last week has been really tough. We thought you were going to have a little brother in January, but your Birth Mom had a miscarriage. You have been the light in these dark days. Your smile and sweet gestures have restored my heart. I'm so blessed to get to be your Momma and no matter what happens in the future we already got the best part of your Birth Mom in you. I cannot imagine my life without you. I'm loving getting to spend everyday with you and watch you grow and learn. I'm so proud to be your Momma! I love you so much more then you can understand.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Aftermath

Just to update everyone on what we've learned since my last post... The baby was born at 12:48 a.m. on Wednesday, July 13th. It was a baby boy and he weighed just a few ounces and was about four inches long. K left the hospital around 8:30 that morning. She named the baby Michael Ray. They had a memorial service for him Thursday morning, but we didn't attend to protect K. She had him cremated and hasn't shared if the doctor told her any cause for her to have miscarried. K is acting very detached and says she's ok. Thank you for praying for her. Please continue to do so.
My previous blog post was also in our church newsletter last week because I didn't want to have to tell the story 100 times and I didn't want people to continue finding out over a prolonged period of time. This proved to be both good and bad. Most people have been very sweet and supportive. Most of them say something about God's will/timing because they don't really know what to say. I don't either. But it feels hallow when your heart still aches for what could've been. It's still so hard to understand. My imagination has brought me through every possible scenario and reason and hope that exists. And still part of me doesn't feel justified in these feelings because I wasn't really his Momma yet.
This morning our Pastor asked for people to come to the alter and pray for rain. We have had one inch of rain in Sayre, America since November. Our farmers are feeling it. Record numbers of cattle are selling at the local auction (it went for 23 hours last week). As our faithful church family crowed the alter several people prayed for rain, but a few of their prayers pierced my heart about our lost baby.
One man who has been so faithful to pray for Chris and I through the three and a half years of infertility and adoption #1 said, "...God, we know you create and sustain life..." As tears clouded my eyes for the millionth time this week, I realized that for me that is what is the toughest part of infertility and K's miscarriage. I KNOW that God is capable of creating life inside of me, but He is choosing not to. For whatever reason this has been a struggle in our life for over four years now. I also KNOW that He could have sustained Baby #2's life while K carried Him if He wanted to. It's so hard for me to wrap my mind around these truths and still trust that He knows what is best. Why not me? Why not this baby? Why get us involved so early? I keep telling Chris that if you can't get pregnant you definitely shouldn't have to go through a miscarriage. One or the other, but both seems so unfair.
The second thing that was prayed was from our Pastor. He used our "Tucker Verses" and my heart just broke. "To Him who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly more then we can ask, think or imagine to Him be the honor and GLORY forever, and ever AMEN." Eph. 3:20. These were my prayer for our first adoption process and God was so overwhelmingly faithful to this promise. But some how this morning they didn't hold the sweetness they usually do. They made my heart hurt. I know they are true. I've lived their authenticity. Maybe that's why they stung today, because I can't see the fruition of that promise. I'm knee deep in the rough part that will make that promise sweeter. someday.
I don't know if we'll ever know or understand why Tootsie Roll's life was so short or why everything shook down like it did, but we are trying to praise our Father through the valley and trust His goodness and plans for our family. The two sermons today were on love and humility. I pray that through this hardship I grow in love and humility and learn to walk those out better. For Tucker. For Chris. For our future children. But mostly for the glory of my Father.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Secret Tootsie Roll Blog #7 - goodbye

My dear sweet Baby,
I didn't know you really, but you were mine all the same. I didn't get to feel you move or hear your sweet little heartbeat, but my heart is broken because your gone. I didn't get to meet you at all. I never got to hold you against my chest and feel your weight against my heart. I didn't get to rock and sing you to sleep feeling your tiny bottom in my hand. I didn't get to nuzzle my cheek against yours as I breathed you in deeply. I'll never know what you smelt like or who you would have been. I'll never know why you were taken from our lives when you were still just a dream. But I do know I loved you before I knew you. You held my heart before I could've ever held you. Just the knowledge of your existence and your place in our family were enough for you to change me forever. I was going to be your Forever Momma. I was going to be the one to rock you to sleep, tie your shoes and kiss your boo-boos as you grew up. I was going to be there to take pictures of you on your first day of school, piano recitals, and high school proms. I was supposed to get to love you no matter what for as long as I was alive, and I think I will even though you won't ever be physically present in our lives.
I think you were a girl. I don't know why, but since we found out you were going to be ours I've just thought you were going to be a girl. The thought of having a daughter and Tucker having a little sister thrilled my soul! I know Tucker would've loved you and been so protective of you as the two of you grew up so close in age. I was so excited to get to be a spectator in that love story the two of you would've shared.
I was scared about how I would handle two babies under two. I was nervous about making life work and not being so overwhelmed that I would miss out on special times with you or your big brother. I had already started trying to help Tucker grow up a little quicker to make your arrival as smooth as possible. I was anxious about where the money was going to come from for us to bring you home. But deep down I knew that these things would work themselves out because they would have to. We would've been ok.
I was excited to see Tucker love you and watch how your relationship with him would develop. I'm so sad that Tucker won't get to grow up with a matching, blood sibling. I wanted you to share that bond with him and both of you have one and other to lean on when questions were ready to be asked. I just felt like you would both need each other to understand this adoption story that we are living. I wanted you both to have a built in best friend so close to your own age, just like I do with your Aunt Cassie. I think I'm just realizing how much I wanted that for you both.
There are countless dreams I've already had for you sweet Baby. Milestones you will never reach. Its so hard to understand why this happened like it did or what the purpose is in it now.
I don't understand why God took you before you ever had a chance. I don't understand why He allowed us all to fall in love with you for such a short time. But I do trust He is sovereign and I know that there is a purpose for your little life. I know that He can use tragedy to call people to Himself and I pray that He will do that with your Birth Mom.
We loved you before we ever held you. You were a Gordon before your first breath. You will always be my second child and I will always love you with a love only a Momma's heart can hold. There just seems to be so much to grieve today. But one day when we are united in Heaven I will rejoice to have had you as apart of our family's story.
I'll love you forever, I like you for always as long as I'm living my baby you'll be. Good bye my sweet Tootsie Roll. May your story bring Him glory.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Let me see your Tootsie Roll...

Since June 7th, Chris and I have been counting down the days until we could share some big news with everyone in our world. Our Birth Mom was pregnant again and on June 7th asked if we would adopt this baby as well. We were beyond thrilled and a little nervous to have two babies under two. We had told our families and a few close friends and there were also a few people we slipped up in front of that knew were planning to welcome the fourth Gordon close to the first of 2012. My niece, who will be four in August, aptly named the new baby Tootsie Roll until we found out the sex. I have been writing, but not publishing blogs to our little Tootsie Roll and may still publish them someday. It feels too fresh right now, but I do want to have them for memory's sake. Needless to say, everyone was super excited, not only to adopt again, but to have the 5t for that second adoption to be a half sibling of Tucker's.
Today at 1:15 K, our Birth Mom, called and said her water broke and after a long afternoon of phone calls from her and our adoption agency, it was determined that it was amitotic fluid that she was leaking and because she was only 14 weeks along the baby's organs aren't developed enough to sustain its little life. They induced her labor around 5:30 tonight.
We are heartbroken and unsure of how to feel and process. Adoption makes a miscarriage different. We're apart of the puzzle at this point even though had the baby made it full term we would have been a much larger piece. I don't know how to feel, how to grieve. It's also different then if I had miscarried. My heart hurts for K as much as it does for us. She has very little support and people to come along side her and love her through this hardship. We have lots of family and a host of church family members and friends to lean on. She is the one actually have to go through the trauma of the events of today as well as the entire 14 weeks of this pregnancy. She has wrestled with deciding to parent or place, and through that had to recognize a lot of personal inadequacies (both physical and emotional). All of this is a lot of me to process as a (fairly) stable 28 year old married woman, little alone a 21 year old single mom with no family.
Please pray for all of us as we process and heal. Pray for K as she continues to face rough days, both in conjunction with this miscarriage and just how her life is unfolding. Pray for peace that passes understanding and the opportunity for us to share why we have a Hope during such a hard situation. Pray for K's salvation. Pray for the future of our family and clarity on what and when the next addition will be. After preparing our hearts to have another baby so soon we will be seeking the Lord's direction for when and how to pursue Baby #2.