After Mykel and I picked up Bryan and Cole and started driving to my in-laws, I just kept looking in the back seat and wondering what to say. I tried to make conversation, but what do you really say to a two-year-old and an eight-month-old child? I had to find a commonality with our little group, so I started singing some children’s songs. Now people who know me know that I can’t carry a tune to save my life, but at this point, I didn’t know what else to do. When Bryan was familiar with the song he would sing along with me and that made both of us smile. Cole was just content to listen and luckily he didn’t make a peep.
We made it to my in-laws for dinner and Mykel and I were fumbling as parents and wondering what to do, how to feed the kids, what they liked, etc. I sat next to Bryan at the table and made him a plate of food and I can only imagine what was going on in his mind. Cole was just happy if someone was holding him or feeding him! We still had no idea what we were going to do when we got home, we didn’t have a crib or a bed for either of them. When we got home later that night I made a bed on the floor in our room. Bryan fell asleep easily. I held Cole close to my chest and just sat up in bed with him. He would lie down, then after a few minutes he would look up straight into my eyes (he was probably wondering who this crazy lady was!) He slept on my chest most of the night, but he would wake up every half hour or so to look at me and then just lay back down. I didn’t get much sleep because I spent the entire first night just watching them, I couldn’t stop smiling
The next morning (Saturday) Mykel had to go to work. I fed them breakfast and Bryan was sitting on the couch when Mykel got up to leave. Bryan said “bye dad” just like it was the most natural thing in the world to say. Mykel and I couldn’t believe those words came out of his mouth, I was truly amazed at his ability to adjust so quickly.
Mykel and the boys
In most adoptions (besides foster-adopt situations) the parental rights are severed before children are placed with the adoptive parents. In our situation, Bryan and Cole were placed in our home without anything being signed. At this point, Ruth could legally just come and pick up the children anytime she wanted to. Obviously this was very stressful for me because I had no idea from one day to the next what was going to happen. Would I give my heart to these little boys only to have them taken from me? Would Ruth change her mind? Where did we go from here? Besides those stressors, I worked full-time and I had to be back to work on Monday and I had no idea what I was going to do about child care!
A picture I found of Bryan opening the presents we had given him ~ the day before he came to live with us.
(The boys' biological grandmother took the picture and gave it to me).