The dreaded phone call came in April. Ava’s birth father contacted Ruth and wanted to see Ava (the phone calls were made between their respective attorneys). It is ironic that I answered the phone call in almost the exact same place as I answered the phone call from Valorie four months earlier asking us if we wanted a little girl. After I got off the phone I remember feeling like my chest was on fire, I felt dizzy and I had to go lie down. I felt like the whole world was crashing down around me and I couldn’t do anything to stop it.
Ava and I were the only ones home at the time and she was sleeping when the phone call came in. I went in and checked on her and then I just lay on the couch and cried. I had no idea what I would do if my little girl was taken away from me. I know that sounds selfish because Ruth had allowed her to come to our family… but that is how I felt. Maybe that is partly how Ruth felt when I came to pick her Ava up, I couldn’t even begin to imagine her pain.
A little while later after I composed myself, I called Mykel at work to relay the news, the boys were all at school and we decided that we wouldn’t tell them, they didn’t need to worry.
Ava’s birth father wanted to see her the next day. His mother and brother were going to be in town and wanted to see her as well. To me, this was a bad sign; having more family come and see her would only make them fall in love with her like we did…. And lessen the possibility of them allowing her to be adopted by our family.
Because Ava’s father had no idea that she was in our care, we had to make arrangements for someone to take Ava and meet him. Two of my close friends (who knew Ruth) agreed to take Ava and meet with her birth father’s family. Of all places the designated meeting spot was McDonald’s.
At this point Ruth was still adamant that we not tell Ava’s father that she was with us, but I felt differently. After I received the phone call, I realized I couldn’t just keep waiting, I had to do something. After much prayer and contemplation, I decided to write Ava’s father a letter explaining everything. I felt if we were open and honest with him he would be more receptive to the idea of allowing Ava to become part of our family. I was also inspired to make picture albums for Ava’s birth father and her grandmother that were coming to see her.
I rushed to the store that night and made copies of several pictures I had of her and put together the photo albums. I also agonized over every detail of the message and thoughts I was putting down on paper as I wrote to Ava’s birth father. I basically laid everything on the line with that letter… and now we would just have to wait, again.