A mom to a newly adopted 6-year-old shared her raw and very real feelings on her journey to parenthood on our Creating a Family Facebook Support Group. With her permission, we share them with you.
I was sitting listening to a song called Blacklist by John Moreland when this lyric hit me like a ton of bricks:
“This sure ain’t how I thought that it would feel – to finally have made it.”
I’ve been feeling lost. Lost from myself, like I don’t recognize this person I am anymore. I’ve been attributing it being a new Mom to a six-year-old overnight, without warning. A process that I thought would take 3 to 4 more years is done; she is here. I am a Mom.
So, if I made it (“you prayed for this,” my husband reminds me when I complain of how tired I am), then how come I don’t feel ecstatic the whole time? How come I still feel lost? How come I don’t feel like myself anymore?
I’ve been finding the answer to that, and it is perplexing. I don’t envy the families enjoying a meal together at a restaurant anymore. I see movies about families, and I don’t have this feeling of not belonging anymore. I listen to those songs that reminded me of everything I did not have, and they don’t make me sad anymore. Nothing. There is nothing of those old familiar feelings I used to have.
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The inability to form a family has been embedded in me, as part of who I am for so long. For 15 long years, I have been this person, a family of 2, childless. My mind and my heart were prepared for losing battle after battle. I was a warrior knowing the odds were against me, and all my strength was being channeled into picking myself up and going at it again. Without a timeframe, without any certainty, with fierce (but certainly, futile) hope.
Fifteen years of watching other people’s new beginnings, bringing children into the family, while I only lost family members.
I realize now that there was some pride in this losing with the dignity of the one that never gives up.
And now I have this miracle sleeping in her bedroom upstairs. This precious life that some force of the universe, God, thought wise to send for me to care for and love.
I am not the proud childless warrior I was only eight months ago. But I find that in joy, there is not the end of a journey or the completion of myself I thought I was looking for.
There is a new me I am finding. An exhausted me. A Mom me. A Miracle was bestowed on me, me. And truthfully, I don’t recognize me like this.
It is so weird. So happily weird.
Is your experience of parenthood what you thought it would be?