Me: "You did grow in my tummy and your eyes are a mixture of Daddy and Mama and your eyes are blueish green, a little of both of us..."
Parker: "Georgia and Ravenna have brown eyes don't they Mama?"
Me: "Yes, just like their birth Mamas and Daddies, beautiful deep brown eyes."
Parker: "But you are their real Mama right?"
Me: "You bet I am forever and ever!"
there was a pause and then from the back of the car, eyes filled with tears,
Ravenna said, "My birthmom is my real Mama."
Me (deep breathe and praying for wisdom) "You are right both of us are very real."
Ravenna: "But my birthmom is my REAL mom...you are just my new mom."
Again with the deep breathing...Me: "Honey I love you so much and your birthmom and I are both a part of your story and you get to choose what you call us. I'm happy to be your new mom, you are such a gift in my life."
Then up pops Georgia, "I spy with my yittle brown eye...my shirt!" and soon all three were playing eye spy and giggling. But for the rest of the day she called me "Mother" instead of Mama. It took everything in me to not start up the conversation again, to defend myself, to explain why I should be her real mama...but truthfully I am her mama but so is her birthmom, both intertwined, both just as important and I don't get to choose. It is important that I do not choose, but that I walk alongside and allow her to go where she needs to go. I love her more than I need to be first in her life...but that doesn't mean that it is not hard.
Later that night, tucking her under all the pink softness of her blankies I saw deep pools of grief in her eyes...
Ravenna: "Mama...will I ever see her?"
Me (also in tears): "With all my heart I hope so."
For awhile she just rested her head on my chest and let the tears fall then...
" Mama, is she safe?"
Me: "I know that we can pray for her safety and God is with her just like he was with you while you waited for us to come."
Ravenna through deep sobs: "what did you pray for?"
Me: " I would go in your room and pray every day, holding your stuffed animals and praying that God would hold you in safe arms, that he would whisper in your ears that you were loved and that you were so precious and wanted, that he would make the time go quickly until we could be together..."
Then she rolled onto my chest, wrapped her legs around me and bawled and bawled, hot tears soaking my clothes.
"I just want to see her...I want my birthmama...I want my birthmama...I want my birthmama."
Until she just lay there cuddled as close as she could possibly get, laying curled on every inch of me, my lips pressed into her silken dark hair...silently praying and whispering how very much I love her, how beyond precious she is to me...how I will love her forever. All the while Georgia, on the other bed is saying "Nenna and Mama stick together like paper and glue, like paper and glue Nenna Mama always!"....and finally she let go and curled up to be tucked in and whispered, "I love you" as I gave her one final kiss.
....And then I curled up in Doug's arms and wept, sort of because it hurt to be the "new" mama but mainly for the hurt in my little girl, for the searing pain that I cannot take away, for the fact that she is 7 and should have no deeper care than what kind of ice cream to get or what playground to play at. Because I would give anything to meet her birthmom too. Because I cannot promise that we will ever find her, I cannot promise that the pain will ever go away...because I just love her so much. My tender, deep, searching little girl.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.