Our first visit was around lunchtime and lasted for a few hours. Then we left the hospital to go check into our hotel and get settled in (for one night) before heading back to the hospital at 7 pm for Kate's baby dedication service.
We got back to the hospital and there were a TON of people in our birth mom's room, even though the hospital security said only a few were allowed back there at a time. Oh well! :) The birth father's family was there, and a lot of the birth mom's friends were there also. After the dedication service, people in the room spent time talking about what our birth parents mean to them, shared special memories, and talked about how they came to the decision to choose Kevin and me. We got to visit just a little bit longer, but visiting hours were finished at 8 so they kicked us out about 8:15. We did stay a little longer talking with Kate's biological grandma, grandpa, step-grandma, and aunt.
We were supposed to be back at the hospital at 11:00 on Friday for Kate's discharge. We got there about 11:00 and were able to spend about an hour and a half visiting before our birth mom and Kate's discharge was final. We got a car seat installation instruction from a man Nazi-Nurse. Seriously, he had to have been ex-military or ex-cop, and his name was Rosie. He was very helpful though.
Before we knew it, it was discharge time. I walked down with Kate and Kevin went to drive the car around. Since both Kate and our birth mom were being discharged at the same time, we were all being taken to the front of the hospital together. The "all of us" included me, Kate, her birth mom and dad, and both of their families. The plan was for Kevin and me to put Kate in our car and drive off first. Of course we knew that this was going to be an emotional moment for everyone. Our adoption worker told us that once Kate was in the car, that we should go ahead and drive off... instead of dragging out the moment.
We got to the front and Kevin pulled up in the truck. Rosie helped us load Kate into the car as everyone watched from about 20 ft away. Kate's birth mom was already crying. We went over to hug everyone quickly and before we knew it, everyone was crying. This was one of the happiest days of my life, but at the same time Kevin and I were both incredibly sad for these two people. They made one of the hardest decisions ever and were obviously hurting, but they knew that this was the best decision for their child.
A lot of people have a misunderstanding that someone who chooses adoption for their child doesn't actually love their child. Quite the opposite is true, at least in our adoption. These two people loved their child so much, that they realized they can't provide for her everything they want to so they chose to place her with Kevin and me. They love her enough to want to stay involved in her life, and stay updated on how she is growing, what she is doing, etc. I can't say enough how blessed we are to have been chosen by them, and can't wait to see what they do with their lives from this point forward.
As we were driving away we realized that we now had a baby girl (and a 7 day revocation period wait ahead of us). How exciting!
And now for a few cute pictures of Kate just because what post is any fun without pictures? And, because I have gotten the comment plenty of times... yes, I know I look tired. I have a good reason... I am tired!
I know I'm slow, but eventually I'll get caught up on our two weeks in a hotel room with a newborn! :) We actually had quite a few adventures that are worth sharing!
"Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think." Ephesians 3:20