So, I'm ready to update on the time we were able to spend with little Kate and her birth parents in the hospital. These posts are as much for ME so that I can remember exactly how things happened, as they are for any of you readers, but I'm happy to share with YOU too! I'll probably repeat some of the stuff in this post and it will probably take a few separate posts so bear with me!
Originally, the birth parents wanted Kate to spend her first week of life (after discharge from the hospital) in interim care. This was because in NC the birth parents had 7 days to change their minds after they have signed papers to terminate their rights. We were okay with interim care because this would sort of be a safety net for both sides- ours and theirs. Think about it, how terrible/awful/hearbreaking would it be to have a baby with you for a week thinking that it was your child, only to be taken away from you? We'd heard of tons of stories and families where the birth mom HAD changed their mind, so we were okay with interim care so that we could avoid the pain and heartbreak of that happening to us.
A week or two before her due date, the birth parents decided that they did not want to use interim care. They wanted Kate to be discharged from the hospital into our care. We were excited, but nervous. Who wouldn't want that first week with their child? But, at the same time we were worried that we might be that family who has to go through the heartbreak of having to give their child back after the first week.
THEN, the birth parents decided they wanted us to be at the hospital. What!? We couldn't believe the turn of events! First, we weren't supposed to even travel to NC to meet our daughter until after her first week of life, and now they wanted us to come TO THE HOSPITAL. Again, we were excited but nervous. Kevin and I were talking about what this might mean, and he said to me "You know, it makes me a little bit MORE confident about all of this because it seems like they would want to use interim care and not let us come to the hospital if they were unsure about their decision. Since they want us to come to the hospital and take her home with us, it seems like they are very sure that adoption is the path they are wanting to take." I hadn't really thought about it that way, so it gave me a little more peace of mind! Plus, now we were going to be able to meet our daughter at only 1 day old!
Originally we thought we were going to have 1 week of notice to travel to NC, but now we were only going to get a few hrs notice! I was on pins and needles. Every time my cell phone rang I wondered "Is this it?". On Wednesday August 10th we got the phone call that our birth mother was in labor and had been admitted to the hospital. Kate was born at 12:15 that afternoon, and the birth mother, birth father, and their families were able to spend Wednedsay together. On Thursday, we traveled to NC and got to the hospital around 1. We were able to spend some time with our birth mom and birth dad, and were even able to meet and spend time with their families. We have tons of pictures with Kate's birth mom, birth dad, birth grandparents, and birth aunt. We love the fact that Kate will be able to look back at these pictures and see how loved she is. We know how incredibly blessed we are to have met all of these family members. Here are a few pictures from our first visit at the hospital. I got to hold her first, and we were so excited and pre-occupied that I didn't even pull out the camera until I'd handed her off to Kevin...
It's actually funny to look back on these pictures, taken only 13 days ago. She doesn't look anything like this anymore! Well, except for the hair. It's all still there and hopefully will stay!
Okay- I think that's a good stopping point for today. Check back tomorrow for Part 2 of the hospital time (our baby dedication service and hospital discharge)!
21 hours ago