This part of my blog has taken me forever to write. Kinley is almost 4 months old and I'm just barely brave enough to write the placement part of my journey. Although it's been 4 months- I am still (and probably forever will be) very sensitive when I talk or think about the placement of my angel daughter.
When the clock struck 8pm- Chelsea (my case worker) came in with the recorder (she was in charge of the paperwork and all the legal documents and she made sure everything was done the right way and all that boring technical stuff). She had a huge pile of paper work. I was dreading those papers my whole pregnancy. These papers terminated my rights as the parent and guardian of Kinley. After these papers were signed and mailed off, I had no voice in behalf of her. For 48 hours I had every say for her life and well being (there wasn't a lot of things I used this power for- but still I had it) and in 45 minutes- those rights were taken away. deleted. disappeared. snatched out from under me. given to people I was entrusting my daughter's life with. The thought of this broke my heart. The recorder had 3 sets of copies of the documents- one for me, one for the adoptive couple (I think- don't hold me to it), and one for the state. I needed two witnesses to sign and prove everything was legit. My mom, sisters, and dad took turns doing the honors. I held sleeping Kinley in my arms the whole signing. I cried every single time I heard the words 'I am terminating my rights as a parent' or 'I know after all is done- I have no say in anything in behalf of Kinley' or 'After the papers are signed there is no turning back' (I am generalizing these sentences of coarse) It pulled at my heart strings to know after this was final- it was 100% final. No turning back. No 'oops I change my mind's. nothing. I cried and cried and cried after page after page after page. I knew I was doing the right thing, but it was still hard knowing I was no longer going to be Kinley's legal mother. It took forever to read and answer all the questions and sign and initial all the pages. It took almost an hour. I was so exhusted from giving birth and not sleeping! I just wanted to curl up in a ball and wake up from this horrible dream. When the signing was over- I had my last hour with Kinley. Chelsea told me to text her when I was ready to see the adoptive couple and do the actual placement.
|I couldn't help but take pictures of her while i signed papers|
They left the room and I cried like a baby. I let all loose and just cried. Tears falling on Kinley's face. This was it. The moment of truce. The point in my life that I had been anticipating and fearing. I had spent 6 months in counseling preparing for this moment. I was terrified. I was sacrificing the most important thing I had in my entire life. I was giving the one thing in my life that was 100% mine to a family I barely knew, but I knew they were the right people. I had prayed, pleaded on my knees, cried to the Lord in fear and worry that this moment I was about to experience would go as good as it could. I was again stepping into uncharted territory- but this time, I prepared myself and I was ready to walk into the dark and figure it out.
I had bought an outfit for Kinley a long while back that I wanted her to wear when she went home from the hospital. It was a white little romper and a white bow. I imagined her being so beautiful in it. Me and my sisters dressed her up in it and we all started bawling. She looked like an angel. She looked like a baby in heaven. She was dressed in all white. She was so pure and innocent. I looked at her and for the foist time, I realized just how much of a little miracle she was. Not only to me, but to her new family. This little 6 pounds of sweetness had changed my life in so many ways. All positive. She was a living miracle. An angel on earth. I kissed her a million times before I let everyone else have there last hugs and kisses. Jaala held her so tight and rocked her back and forth. Told her how much she loved her. Same with Charnae. She gave her niece kisses and told her she was beautiful and would always love her. My mommy held her granddaughter in her arms so lovingly. It made me think of how Heavenly mother would hold her children. She was so gentle and whispered to her how special she was. When it came time for my dad to hold her, he became silent. He looked in her eyes (she had woken up) for a moment and then started singing her You Are My Sunshine. We all were brought to tears. To see my dad so sad and almost unable to sing, made me hurt inside. It made me realize that I wasn't the only one sacrificing something. My whole family loved that little girl. It hurt for all of them to say goodbye. After my dad sang to her, he handed her back. I gave her the biggest hug! I looked into her beautiful eyes and recited her my all time favorite poem: I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my baby you'll be. That was the hardest thing to say to her. I loved her, still love her and will always love her.
My heart was hurting so badly. The feeling in the room was so peaceful though. I felt like I could reach out and touch heaven. God was there with us and he was helping me. I always imagined him there helping me hand Kinley to her new mommy. I felt like someone was ripping my heart out. I had never felt that much pain in my life. I had never loved someone or something so much in my life and for it to be taken from me, hurt worse than being run over by a train. I had every opportunity to tell Chelsea not to mail the papers and that I changed my mind- but I knew I was doing the right thing. Heavenly Father was holding my hand at this moment. I could sense it. He was helping me face the biggest fear of my life. I just had to remember that I was doing the right thing and that I was prepared for it. My family and I talked for a while longer and then I felt it was time to text Chelsea that I was ready.
About 5 minutes later, Nicole, Toby, Taylee, and Chelsea came in. Nicole was holding a car seat and a big present. I cried more. I wished that car seat was mine and that I was the one taking Kiney home in it. We talked a little bit and then I finally took the stage. I told Nicole how much I loved her and her family and how I looked to her as a sister. I told them how much of a blessing they were in my life. I knew I was a huge blessing in their life, but because of them, I was able to live the life I was supposed to and they were giving me that opportunity by caring for my child. We were all teary eyed and Nicole and Toby expressed their appreciation and love towards me as well. Nicole gave me the big present and asked me to open a small box inside. Inside the box was a necklace. It had two little charms on it that said "Forever in my heart" and "Kinley". It was a necklace for me that had Kinley's name on it. I cried so hard. It was perfect. There couldn't have been a more perfect gift. I put it on immediately. After a few minutes of silence, I gave Kinley the biggest kiss and I got the guts to stand up. This was it.
I stood up and gave Toby and Nicole a hug. I paused in front of Nicole and just stood there for a few seconds. I had tears rolling down my face as I placed Kinley in her arms. It didn't even feel like I was doing it. I think Heavenly Father was helping me. I placed her in her arms and at that moment- I knew, I knew it was the right thing to do. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. Placing my most prized possession in the arms of a woman who so desperately needed it. The look in Nicole's eyes said it all. "Thank you" they said. I had so much pain in my heart, but at the same time, so much peace and love. I had given Toby and Nicole something they would have never been able to have if it weren't for me. I gave them the gift of life. The gift of a sweet baby girl. I felt so blessed and honored to be able to give them that gift. Although I was hurting so badly, I felt peace. I like to think that Kinley was always supposed to be Nicole and Toby's. Nicole's body just didn't function the right way, so I was the one who was supposed to grow Kinley and place her in their arms. Kinley is technically mine, but at the same time, she never was. She was supposed to be Nicole and Toby's the whole time. I was just the portal in which she got to them. Through choices- good and bad- Kinley found her way into Nicole's arms via me. God just had a better plan. I liked his plan. It enabled me to learn a big lesson and to bless lives. I loved the way Kinley looked in Nicole's arms. I loved the way the 4 of them looked together. They were a complete family. Although I didn't feel complete without my daughter, I felt happy that I caused them so much joy. They looked so happy. I stood back as they were getting pictures and they looked so so happy. Kinley is going to be a happy girl as she grows up.
My dad pulled me in and gave me a big hug. I was so grateful he was there. I was grateful that my mom and sisters were there too. I had my little support system with me when I did the hardest thing I think I'll ever do in my entire life. In my moment of hurt and sadness, my family held my hand, wiped my tears, and gave me hugs. I love my family so much. I don't know where I would be without them. I don't even want to imagine this journey without them. It would have been impossible- that's for sure. I am also so thankful for all my family that couldn't be there, my extended family, friends, ward members, etc that supported me through out my whole pregnancy! They helped my push through the hard parts of my pregnancy, my struggles, and they were an awesome cheering section.
I gave Nicole and Toby the low down on Kinley. When she needed to be fed, burped, how she liked to be held, where she liked to lay, how to wrap her up, how to sooth her etc. In that short 48 hours, I had learned so much about her and she had a lot of directions. I gathered up all my things and my family and I headed home. I couldn't wait to be in my own bed and just sleep. Sleeping cures so much.