Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Becoming a Parent

This was a posting from last year on my Live Journal account; I thought it might be good to share here…

Three years ago this weekend, Tod and I were ready to head west to Chicago and soak up some Bear Pride. We had just begun the whole adoption process and for the past several months had been working on “getting ready” (whatever that means) for a new life in our lives. We had told our parents, our friends, and our coworkers, and were busily attending to the myriad of details that go into adoption. There was much prep in the way of paperwork. Our home study would be held two months later, but we were still busy getting it all put together.

We were going to head out to Chicago with some buds, but in the end decided to stay home here in Jackson for the long weekend. We ended up nesting pretty much the entire three days, doing what we thought we should be doing to get our house and lives ready for this yet unknown little one. We cleaned and organized the house, purging ourselves of a lot of shit… both physical and mental. We had told ourselves that if we did have a kid we’d still be able to do all the wild and fascinating things we did as D.I.N.K.s and maintain our absolutely fabulous lifestyle. Our trip to NYC back in April had us walking the streets of the metropolis evaluating what we could and couldn’t do with a kid.
Central Park, yes, The Eagle, NO. (edit: Central Park with a kid is amazing, see the Alice post from April).

This was both a resignation to the fact that we were becoming parents and the realization that life didn’t end if we didn’t go to Chicago. I think we actually felt better by not going, and pooling our efforts/energy into getting ready for our future child and the grueling home study two months later. We had no idea what to expect, so this time helped ease these fears.

However, this year is different. We’re going to Chicago and Bear Pride (edit: we actually didn’t do much with the Bears, instead we were grill-masters at Jay and Brian’s BBQ), and we can’t wait. Tod’s parents are conveniently located on the way to Chicago on the way out of MI on 94. “Hey, here’s that grandkid you wanted! See you in three days!” While we stayed home three years ago pining about what it would be like to be parents, this year we are pining to get out of Dodge, drop the kid and become BETTER parents for having time away from our little princess.

When I worked at YMCA Camp Storer here in Jackson County (it’s a Toledo YMCA camp in Napoleon, MI) we had a saying for the summer camp kids that NEVER wanted to go home, “how can we miss you if you never go away?”

Same is true with Miss Anna. While it will be hard to leave her, it will be delightful to come back to her refreshed and ready to parent through the summer. Three years ago we had no idea. Now we know.
Wish us luck.