What happens when you meet your twin

I did meet my twin last weekend. OK so we aren't really twins (obviously!) but when I heard her story I was just blown away by the similarities to my own.

Our church has had a series of forums this year. One was about infertility, one was about divorce/widowhood, one was about adoption. I didn't make it to any of the other ones but I wanted to attend the adoption forum.

They had 3 panelists - one was adopted as a newborn, one was adopted by her father (bio father left her mother when she was 2) and has also adopted a child internationally, and one has adopted 3 children from foster care before having biological children.

The woman who adopted from foster care shared a story that was so similar to ours with D.  About living with a child who doesn't want to be adopted, who tells you he hates you, who says he'd rather live in JAIL than live with you.  Who tells you you will never be his mother, who does stupid things and makes poor choices.  Who acts angry all the time, who you worry about what they are going to do next.  Having the cops come to your house and having to call the police on your own child. Feeling like a failure, like you did something to make them act like this - how it must be your fault, because you are the parent...right?  Being lonely and isolated, your child running away...so many similarities, it was stunning.

Then about how God worked to build their marriage and relationships through that, and how going through those trials ultimately brought them all closer. And how God was working, even when it didn't feel like He was doing anything.

I went up and talked to her afterwards (which, by the way, is something I would typically never, ever ever ever ever do because I am shy and introverted and somewhat afraid of people!).  We bonded pretty instantly.  Her younger kids are about the same age as our younger kids, and she has 2 teens that she is going through this with.  Her oldest has turned the corner it seems, similar to D, so that's good! Also she has had it WAY worse than we did, even though at the time it felt like we were living a nightmare.

Our younger kids are also going to go to the same school in the fall!  I had no idea when I met her, but then she was at a "meet the teachers" event this past week so we ran into her again.  This fall we are going to try a co-operative school, where the kids go 2 days a week and homeschool the other days.  The teachers at the school do all of your lesson planning for you, so that's very exciting.

In other news, we got some paperwork to fill out for our nephew. I feel like I should have a name for him...how about Peanut! I just noticed today that the papers were mailed on May 12 and the state wanted them back by May 20th.  We're talking like 20 pages of forms PLUS getting fingerprinted.  Maybe just a little unreasonable, State!  Hopefully we'll get fingerprints done on Monday and they won't be too mad at us if they are a few days "late".

Peanut has been coming over pretty much every weekend for at least a few hours. He can't spend the night yet, but he usually spends a lot of the day Saturday with us.  I feel like he is starting to recognize us and know us, which is good!  It's hard to get used to having a "baby". Of course he can walk, and he can say a few intelligible words, but he pretty much needs eyes on him 24/7 to avoid disaster and Claire is past that point. She's nearly a year older so that is understandable!  It's just a change.  He also is physically just not as strong/sturdy as she is and takes a lot of unexpected tumbles. It is definitely an adjustment.

We took everyone in our car for the first time today.  It is a packed house in there, 6 kids in car seats plus 2 adults. C is almost out of needing a booster, I think technically he could be out of one. He's 9 and very tall but such a lightweight that I worry!  Buckling 3 kids into car seats takes foorreeevveeerrrr, brings back memories. This is not the first time we've had 3 little kids to buckle into car seats! :)  At least the big three can buckle themselves now which relieves a little bit of the pressure.

We told the kids that Peanut might be coming to stay with us, and if he does come it might just be for a while or it might be for a long time, and that we don't know that it will happen or when or if.  They all seemed very excited about it. I feel relieved about that.  Having them on board will make everything much easier. Not that there won't be bumps in the road, because I know that there will be! But the fewer bumps, the better. :)

I'm done with school this year.  Yes, me. I'm over it.  Calling it quits.  We have some catching up to do over the summer (specifically learning Latin and some geography) that we need to do to get ready for our new school. And I am on hard core nesting mode. I have this feeling like I need to get stuff clean, organized, purged, and ready for a (potential) new little one!  Next week I am going to spend the week working on that. We will see how far I can get. Our mother's helper is going to come over during the mornings so I should be able to get a lot of good work done.  It is amazingly hard to get anything done with 5 kids underfoot.  Working for more than 5 consecutive minutes is basically impossible without some backup, so I am very thankful for her!

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