Friday, December 25, 2009

A Very Merry Christmas,

Wow, this has been a good Christmas with my family but it was highlighted with a wonderful e-mail and some beautiful pictures of Ashden and his Parents B and T. They have asked that I not share the pictures of the three of them but I am going to share a few of the pictures of Ashden. I love seeing his smile! You can tell just how happy he is, and his beautiful blue eyes. I know that they still have a chance of changing, and I know that I will still think he is the most handsome little boy ever if they do, but I still am hoping that he will have my blue eyes! :-)

Have a Very Merry Christmas EVERYON! :-)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas is starting and the Project continued

Hello All,

So there are only two days until Christmas. Wow, 2009 has gone so fast...I can't believe it's almost over. Well, I have been working on my project for Ashden a bit more the past few days even though I have so much other stuff going on. It's just relaxing for me to do some cross-stitching and at the same time it's fun to be making something for him with my own hands. :-)

Here are the two new animals I have finished... A Sheep and a Dog!

I'm happy to tell you that B and T had to make their longest road trip with Ashden to date to visit family and he did great. Terresha said that he was a very good traveler even though he got a little fussy towards the end. They split it up into two days to make it a little easier on him. I'm really excited to hear all about his first Christmas and I know that his new Grandparents are enjoying all the fun time spoiling him. They are visiting T's side right now and this is their very first Grand-baby and I'm sure they won't be able to put him down! Haha, it brings happy tears to my eyes to know how much he is loved and how much they are taking care of him.

I'm sure I'll have a lot more to update in a few days but I just wanted to share this little bit today. :-)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Open Adoption and the Holiday Season...

I'm becoming a member of the Open Adoption Bloggers and their Roundtable #11 is called "Open Adoption and the Holiday Season". This will be my first Christmas being a birthmom so I wanted to share a little about my experience so far.

It has been a good holiday season thus far and I am praying for many more like this. There are a few things that I am still trying to figure out, and I know over time I will be able to. My Mom, Sister and I all got Ashden gifts for his first Christmas. His new parents loved them and thanked me in the e-mail from the previous post. Last Friday I received a package from the adoption agency from B and T and they had sent me a gift. They sent me a bracelet that says "Love-A-Love-J-Love" on it (AJ standing for Ashden John). I love it and I've been wearing it ever since. They also sent me this cute picture book that they had put together on Snap Fish. I love it to death and I have looked at it probably about 40 times now and I've shown it off to several of my family and friends. One huge question that I run into is if I should get anything for B and T for Christmas. Part of me really wants to but doesn't know if it's appropriate and another part of me doesn't (because I'm a broke college student). It's a very hard decision because I don't think they are offended that I don't send them personal gifts because I gave them a beautiful son, but I don't really know. This is something I'll have to feel out over time, and maybe with a little more money I can get them some little things.

I have read several adoption blogs and a lot of people seem to being having this ache in their hearts for their babies over the holiday season. I'm not sure if I am feeling this way. I miss him, yes, but I also know that he is with a wonderful family who will be taking care of him and giving him soooooo much. So I do miss him but not as profound as others I guess. Of course I don't know if that ache will grow over time or not. I just know that having an open adoption with this wonderful couple has helped me in so many ways...I think that this holiday season it has really helped me not feel a loss over giving up my son but more of a gain for adding B and T into my life.

Take care everyone!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Getting to know the family...

Hello All,

Well I just had to do another update...I was trying not to update to much but I had to share this. I ended up getting my sons parents e-mail address on Tuesday night during our wonderful call. I had told them about my blog and I wanted to share it with them! They checked it out and both thought it was really neat. I'm so happy to hear that from them!

They met with their adoption worker yesterday and received the gifts that my Mom, Sister and I had sent them. So they ended up e-mailing me! It brought tears to my eyes but they were tears of joy!

Here is the first part of their e-mail:

Dearest Deanna, Joe and family :)
Hello!! We hope you are good and everyone is having a great day. We just had our visit with Jamie and got the lovely things you sent, oh my. I cried enough happy tears reading the wonderful words from you and your family. You are all so special to us, you can't imagine! Ashden already listened to the book you recorded for him, its so neat and we loved hearing your voice. B held him and he sat up and looked at all the pictures and listened to the words. B said to him, "you've heard that voice before" and he was listening so intent. What a treasure! He is also wearing the reindeer outfit you got him today for Jamie's visit. :)

This made me cry! "you've heard that voice before"...yeah I was a puddle. It was just so sweet of them to share that with me. T told me that when she reads any of the books I bought for Ashden that she always tells him that they are from me. I am so blessed to have this wonderful family who cares enough about me and Ashden to make sure we both know about each other. :-)

The Christmas books will be so much fun to read together. He is really liking books now since he is more alert and awake. I have always loved Christmas books as a child and even to this day and now we can start the tradition with him. The knitted hat from your grandma is adorable and he's already modeled it :) He loved the Jittery pal from Sarah and the awesome bright colors. Your family Christmas pictures turned out so nice. We actually are doing Ashden's birth announcement as our Christmas picture this year, you are getting one of those when you get the goodies we sent with Jamie. She may be in town next week so you'll either get them or she will mail them so you get them. I hope you like them :) It was really good to hear from your family too and the little Christmas card for Ashden too. I have their birth announcement of Ashden sitting here to get in the mail as well. I wanted them to have one also, I just forgot to send it with Jamie. We have really enjoyed getting to know your family as well through this process. I also gave a birth announcement to Jamie and one for Carisa. There are so many people that love this little boy and that's awesome. I always tell him about his birth grandma, birth grandpa, birth aunt, uncle.....and of course, you :) He knows a zillion people love him!

I can NOT wait to get the birth announcement from them for Ashden. It will be so much fun to see what they put together. T is so great at crafts and such...she is a neat woman and I know she is going to be a wonderful Mother!

Your blog was fun to read, I'm glad that it will also be helpful to others and it is also helpful for us to read too, in addition to our chats. You also can give yourself more credit because I like to think of a birthmom's decision, not as giving up a child, but forming a plan for their bright future, and you were so brave to do that. :) :) I also started checking out the open adoption site you sent, there is a lot there, wow they have really put a cool site together.
Thank you for sharing that, it will be good to read. Thank you again for thinking of us and it was so fun to read everything you wrote in your letters and card.
We love you tons!
B, T, Ashden, Charisma, Jake, and Bailey

I love this! "I like to think of a birthmom's decision, not as giving up a child, but forming a plan for their bright future". It really is so true! I knew that I was not going to be able to give my baby boy everything that I knew he should have from the VERY beginning of his life. I did a very unselfish thing to give him away and I don't regret it at all. :-) He is with such a wonderful Mom and Dad and they love him so much.

Ok, I have to share this beacuse it cracked me up...and not in a bad way, really in a "I knew I chose them for a reason", kinda way. I hope that makes sense...anyways. So she was telling me about his day care next year when she heads back to work. This is what she says..."Well I go back to work on the 4th, but Brian is then taking a week off, and then he'll start going to the day care." Haha, isn't that wonderful?!?! I the whole time I was trying not to cry happy tears and I was trying to not laugh too loud because it was just perfect. They are first time parents, and they really act like it. Well I hope none of that sounds bad because I'm smiling so big and glowing so much right now!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Update on Ashden,

Hello all,

I just got off the phone with T. It was so wonderful to hear from them again and finally be able to chat instead of trying to catch up over texting. Ashden is doing great. He is eating well and growing up. :-) He is now at 11 lbs 10 oz and is 24 and 1/4 inches long. Haha. He has gotten so big! They seem so happy and it is wonderful to hear how everything is going with them and their family. We talked for a good hour and I know we both had plenty of questions for each other. It always seems to me that I have so many questions, yet when I finally get to talk to them I'm so excited that my mind almost goes completely blank! Haha, oops. I'll have to remember to start carrying a note pad around with me so when I think of a question I can ask them! It was so fun to hear about their plans over the holidays and it almost made me cry with how much they do care about me and want to know how I am doing. She told me that they read the books I got for him and always tell him that they were from "Your Birthmom Deanna". That makes my heart smile for sure. I think it's awesome that he'll get to know who I am from the beginning.

I went to the Free Pregnancy Testing Center in town yesterday to talk to Joy who helped me figure out what decision I was going to decide on. She was so happy that I had come forward and I'm willing to be available to them to talk to other girls going through unplanned pregnancies to help them understand all of their options. It was nice to talk to her and to be able to tell someone else about little Ashden and the wonderful couple I picked to be his parents. :-) I know I talked about them the whole hour I was there. She thought it was wonderful that I was so comfortable with the family and that I know that the decision I made was the right one. It's for sure that I don't have any regrets with this adoption and that makes me feel even happier.

I'm going to get back to packing and working a bit more on my project for Ashden...I'm so excited to get more of it done so I can show you all. :-)

Sunday, December 13, 2009

My project for Ashden John,

So I decided to create a cross stitching picture for my dear Ashden John. My mother had made one from me when I was born that had my name, my date of birth, my height and weight when I was born, and my hair and eye color. I found one that fits the bond that T, B and I have to animals to make for him. I originally wanted it to be a Christmas present but due to my class schedule and lack of time I have decided to make it a birthday present for him...I am going through and working on the coloring of each of the animals and then I'll go back through at the end and work on the outline. Here is the pig...

Next up...The sheep! :-)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Another update from the adoptive family...


First I would like to tell you all that I took a huge step in trying to help others out that go through an unplanned pregnancy. I contacted our free pregnancy testing center in town, where I went when I had a positive home test to confirm it, and I told them that I would be more then happy if they would contact me if there were any girls who were thinking about adoption and wanted to talk to anyone who has been through it. I told them I would be more then happy to talk about my experience and help them just understand the adoption side of things and the different levels of adoption from closed all the way to very open. I am going to talk to the center next week and maybe even fill out an application to do some work for them. My next goal is to check out Kansas State University's different groups/organizations and see if they have anything for women who have gone through adoption, abortion, miscarriages...anything like that so I can get involved in it. I know a lot of people don't think that a miscarriage can be similar to adoption or abortion but due to some experiences of my friends and comforting each other through our tough times I've noticed that there are so many similarities between them even though they are so different.

Ok on to the topic of my post...

I received this picture from T and then we procceded to have this conversation:

T: Heard it was negative 20 your way wind chill! So cold here too. B had a snow day yesterday, had a great day hanging out. Ashden is getting big they had a shower for us at school today, he got lots of goodies :) We love you! Keep Warm!!! Good luck on your finals! I bet you are looking forward to a break :) You'll do great.

Me: Thank you so much for the cute picture of Ashden. I'm so glad to hear you got lots of goodies at at your shower at school. :) It is cold and snowy here but Joe loves it. I have one final left now tomorrow morning and then its time for a break that cant come soon enough. Haha. How does Ashden like the cold?

T: Glad you are good :) Ashden doesn't like wearing his hat at all but he doesn't mind his warm reindeer suit. When it was warmer we did a stroller ride and he loved it but now with it really cold B dropped us off at the door to the places we went yesterday :) It was so windy too!

Me: Haha to bad he hates his hats he looks so cute in them! That was sweet of B to drop you off at the front door to all the places you went yesterday. Is Ashden sleeping through the night better? Have you had your family and friends baby shower?

T: He is sleeping at night better :) we are having another shower in January :) The grandparents both got him lots of stuff too :) We have been reading the books you got him and he knows they're from you :) Oh yes, and Ashden LOVES the Christmas tree lights I keep joking that I'll have to leave the trees up year round :)

Me: Awwww...Thank you so much! :) That made me very happy. I'm so glad he is sleeping through the night better. I'm sure he is ganna get so much at the next shower. I'm so happy you are all doing so well. Thanks again for keeping in such good contact with me. I love hearing from you! Maybe you can put the lights around his crib that would keep him entertained for hours. :)

T: Good idea :) We think of you often, have a wonderful night and good luck on that last final and then you get your break!!!! Enjoy it! I'll let you know how much he weighs after his appt next week! I'm anxious to know! Take care :)

Me: You have a wonderful night too. I can't wait to hear his updated weight too! I don't want to over step any boundries either but just know I would be happy with another call sometime when you can and if you want. :)

T: Thanks you're fine :) I was planning on giving you a call with the dr checkup next week, it will be fun to chat and catch up!!!!!!!! :) :)

Hehe, that made me so happy! So next Tuesday I'll get to hear about his updated weight! Yippy!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Full Post below...but had to share!

I got a text message from T today it had the following picture and message:

Title: Thinking of you!!!!!

Message: Wanted to send you this pic of Ashden on Thanksgiving. Hope you had a great holiday. He is getting big, next dr checkup is the 15th so we should get his new weight then. :) Have a great day!

Wasn't that so thoughtful of them?! It brought tears to my eyes...but very happy tears.

Thanksgiving and a few other things,

Thanksgiving came so fast this year. I couldn't believe it! I wasn't completely prepared for seeing my whole family after just giving my son up for adoption. I didn't know how people would react or how they would even act around me. It wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. I know that at first people were a little apprehensive about talking to me. My guess is they weren't sure what to talk to me about because they didn't know how I would take it. They all finally started to calm down and I even brought my photo album of photos of Ashden (from the hospital all the way to his first "One Week Old" professional pictures. That helped everyone relax a little bit a think. It was a good Thanksgiving and lots of food. The one major thing I'm Thankful for this year is the wonderful Adoptive Parents that I picked out for my son...they really are amazing!

I got a call from my adoption worker the Tuesday before Thanksgiving telling me that B and T had sent me a Thanksgiving card and a little art project from Ashden. I had her read me the card and I was in tears at my office. Haha. It was a beautiful letter and it was so wonderful to have them send something to me even when they didn't have to! They even sent me his first art project. :-) It was when he turned a month old and all he really contributed to it was his hands and feet. They used orange paint to put a foot print and a hand print on a card for me. I am so happy I picked this family! They are going above and beyond what they were even expecting...

They went into the adoption process of not really wanting to have an open adoption and they've come all the way around to sending me cards, texting me and even a phone call already. I guess that goes both ways. I at first was against having visitations. I just wanted to receive pictures. Then I stepped it up to pictures and a letter. Then it went to pictures, a letter with the pictures, and visitation once a year. They have been so thoughtful of me through the whole process and it really has helped me out a lot. When they send me cards they always send them to Joe and I (yes Joe is my dog). They are huge animal lovers and that is one of the biggest reasons I picked them. So they always include Joe in their letters to me and when they sign the cards they always say from T, B, Ashden and Carisma, Jake and Bailey too (their cat and two dogs). It's great fun!

I am still doing ok. I have an appointment with a councleor tomorrow. I don't know how long I'll keep going but part of me just feels like I am not completely coping with everything. I don't know if I am and I'm just doing so well because of how awesome B and T are or if I'm just trying to avoid my real emotions. So I'm hoping that I can figure out exactly how I'm feeling so I can stop overthinking things.

School is almost last final is Dec 11th and then it's finally the start of the Christmas break and then KSU here I come!

Take care!


PS: I scanned Ashden's first art project so I could have an electronic version...enjoy!