Have you ever longed for something so bad, wished on every shooting star, every candle you blew out on your birthday cake, prayed every night that you could get your wish…
Well I must say I sure have.. Most of my adult life I have wanted to have children.. but do the obstacle beyond my control my husband and I were never able to have any. It was with great sadness that I could not give him a biological child to carry on his name. He has other sibling who have kids to carry on the family name, but I wanted to give him that gift as well. Talk about feeling like a big ole failure. We went to doctors and got tested.. started courses of Metformin.. but nothing.. People kept saying relax relax.. we did nothing… We counted the days on a calendar.. we too test to see when I was most fertile.. read books… did everything we could think of. With our limited funds… we were about at the end of our journey. We had all but given up the idea… It filled me with great sadness.
It was about that time we were visited by my half sister and her daughter Harley.. She was 4 months old and just a joy. Of course it did nothing to ease that aching and longing to want one for myself. I saw the way my husband loved this child.. held her cooed to her, rocked her and I thought I am never gonna be able to give that to him.. It was a long month I must say. The longer they stayed the more in love we became with this child… While there my sister learned she was once again going to have another child… Really… She was packing herself and Harley up and heading to Lousiana to stay with our aunt. I was sad to see them go, yet at the same time I wanted to try and deal with my inadaqancies as a woman and wife.
Once they were gone our life got back to normal, if that is what you choose to call it. We had talked about adoption, but really it was a dream, because we knew that we could never afford it and I mean it was not like the stork was just gonna fly into our lives and drop a baby on our doorsteps right.
Then the fatal call comes.. my sister calls to tell me she can not handle it and would we come take the baby, until she can get on her feet. This is a cruel joke ya know.. someone has a sick sense of humor ya know.. She informed me that my aunt was just too old to help take care of her and although she did not say it I knew that she was just too lazy to do it. That month she stayed with us taught me a lot. She never fed the baby, changed the baby, held the baby.. it was all done by us. So I knew what my aunt was having to deal with. I told her I would have to talk it over with the family and I would get back to her.
Convincing Hubs was not all that hard because all it really boiled down too was that that baby girl needed us and she was not getting what she needed from her mother. Yes we were scared.. scared that we were gonna fall deeper in love with this kid then her mother was gonna come back and rip her out of our arms and hearts. That was a painful thought, but one we had to set aside for the well being of the child. So here we go heading off to Louisiana with a very old LTD praying we would make it. And I kid you not every state we went through something happened , either to us or to the car.. the exhaust pipes came off in one state…A rock hit the window and cracked the windshield, had torrential down pours and the wipers went out.. Hubs lost his wallet, or rather was pick pocketed in another. By the time we got to my aunts all we wanted to do was get the baby and go, but it was not that easy.
My sister the schemer always has something up her sleeve ,, always.. She had some papers drawn up giving us temporary custody of Harley also stating it was only good for one year. Then she dropped the bomb on us. She and her girlfriend wanted to come back with us.. We said no.. flat out and I know she was not happy. We packed up what stuff she had and headed out. We had nothing.. nothing we were not prepared to have a baby. Most people have 9 months to get use to it, we had like 3 days.
While we were this far west we decided we would swing up and go visit his parents. I mean how often are we out this way. We tried to call his folks and let them know we were coming but no one ever picked up so we came anyway. It was in the wee hours of the morning when we arrived and so we just decided we’d sleep in the living room and deal with everything else in the morning. Good plan right. LOL did not work out that way.. Curly Sue, my in-laws little tea cup poodle was going nuts and she woke up pa. He comes out to see what the ruckus was all about and there we sit on his sofa changing the diaper of a 5 month old child. He finally shut his mouth and yelled for his wife.. He told her Linda put in your teeth and hold your mouth shut or your gonna loose them you ain’t gonna believe this. So much for sleep…
The very next day I get a call from my sister and she is frantic (nothing new) It seemed she forgot to tell us a few details while we were coming all that way to get this child. She informed us that the state of Illinois was looking for us because they had custody of this child. WHAT.. you have got to be kidding. Talk about wanting to smack someone, I am just glad she was in another state. As soon as I hung up with her I called the number she gave me to Catholic Charity’s in Illinois and they informed us that yes they indeed have custody of Harley and wanted to know just where we were, who we were and what our plans were. GULP is that sirens I hear coming… it felt just like that! Talk about being blindsided… I told them everything they wanted to know and told them that we were going to be staying at the in-laws a few days while we were this far out. But once we got home we would contact them and see what and where we needed to do.
Once we were home I contacted them and they said they would have the local DHS contact us and see where we stand. A week went by nothing..this child was over over due for her check ups and shots.. So I contacted the local Health department to see about getting her check up done then I called DHS and tried to find out if they had even been contacted. It seemed like a month or so before they finally contacted us and wanted to set up an appointment to get some vital info and tour the house. Gulp that was scary.. we were living in an 80 some year old family home that needed more work then you could ever image. It all worked out tho, the social worker was great and the visit went ok. Illinois was happy that Harley was being taken care of in a healthy loving home. They were gonna let her stay for now. There end plan was to get her back to her mother… YIKES.
In this time I learned a lot about my sister and none of it I liked. She had also lost custody of her two oldest boys and they were living with their Biological father.. Harley’s biological dad was in prison for drugs and wanted nothing to do with her. She was doing drugs and drinking and selling herself to both men and women.. just to make money.. It just made me even more secure that we did the right thing going to get her.
We watched this beautiful child grow and blossom. She was a great joy and just full of love. I however was having some issues.. I was afraid to get too close because I knew at some point she was gonna be pulled and sent back to her mother. So I did hold myself back.. but it was too late for my husband and father.. they fell hook line and sinker… I felt sorry for my sister she missed out on the first steps, first words.. all the milestones that parent long for. She started running and I mean running at 9 months.. she was starting to say a few words and of course da da was her first. But when she started calling me mama I did not know what to do. Was this ok.. I mean if she was going back was that gonna mess her up.. Every few months we would get sketchy updates from Catholic Charities about Harleys case.. and the ultimate goal was always reunifacation. One year turned to two and my sister was no closer to getting her life together, So we were really shocked one day when our DHS worker showed up at our door wanting to know how we felt about maybe adopting her.. Ummm yes! Let’s do it! So we started the whole adoption process.
It seemed like it took forever for the paper work to get finished and approved. The courts wanted to do the adoption of her and her one of her older brothers at the same time.I remember the day like it was yesterday.. we arrived the day before and she was just in a horrible mood. I do not know if it was just that she was in the car too long or she did not feel good, but she was not happy and wanted nothing to do with anyone. We had her all dolled up and took her to the court house. It felt like we waited hours , but we were this close to having our dream what was a few more hours. She and her older brother Bubba were adopted at the same time. She got to spend a few hours with her brothers and she seemed to enjoy it.
So see mericals do happen.. and well sort of a stork just put her in our laps.. LOL She has been our blessing now for almost 13 years and I love her. She is a great child and she takes after her DadDeee! So in conclusion even tho I was not able to give him a bloodline child he got one just as good. He got a child that more then likely if she were with her mother would have been on the street doing the same thing her mother did. Blessing blessing God is great. Thank you for this wonderful gift you have bestowed before us and we promise we are going to love her and try to bring her up in the ways of God.