I can't sleep! I haven't slept all night in over a week. I generally wake up between 2:30 and 3:30 and rarely go back to sleep. It is driving me crazy!!! I've always been a light sleeper. Most little noises wake me up during the night. This is different though. There doesn't seem to be anything that wakes me up. I just wake up and then cannot go back to sleep. I toss and turn and try to get comfortable again. I turn on my sound machine i.Phone app. I try everything. This morning I even downloaded a meditation/sleep file from i.Tunes. The guy doing the talking has a very soothing voice, but it just didn't help. I have been really good about not taking a nap when I get home from work and believe me, I have certainly wanted to! I know that will only make it worse though. I am feeling like a big time grump and I hate it. So I ask you, what can I do? If you have any sleep issues and found something that worked, please share them with me. Or if you just have a suggestion, share that too!
I also wanted to update on our AES (Adoption Education Seminar). It was really great! There were a lot of things that I already knew from all the research I've done. We talked about a lot of good topics though. We spent quite a bit of time on Open Adoption. There was discussion about what scares us about that, how the birth families feel when they make an adoption plan and allow someone else to take their baby home from the hospital. I'm not gonna lie...I was crying! It really is emotional when you think about it. I mean, here is this woman/family who wants her child to have a really great life and is going to trust me to give her child what she feels she can't. It is a gift I can never be worthy of and can never be thankful enough for.
Something that was really helpful to me was discussing the role the birth family will have in our lives. It looks different for every family and of course it can change over time. It is something we'll discuss with the birth family in the match meetings and decide what we are both comfortable with. I know it can be scary, but I also know that a child can never have too much love so I just continue to pray. I pray for God to allow me to feel secure even when I'm scared. Because even though we won't be co-parenting, there will always be another woman out there who is the birth mother of my child. I will never be the birth mother, just like she will never be the mother fulfilling the day to day needs my child will get from me. It's something that is totally new to me so of course it's scary, but I know it is something I can do.
There was also a lot of discussion about transracial adoption. Our agency does a lot of transracial adoptions. I think so many do now because there is just such a need for it. They don't pressure anyone into it because it really is a personal decision. We spent a lot of time discussing what kinds of changes some people make after they adopt a child of a different race. What is best for the child as far as support? Where you can find resources to help with any issues that may come up? How is parenting a child of another race different? I know a lot of people like to believe that it really isn't any different and I think in many ways, it's not. You love your child no matter what. But, there are differences. Unfortunately, we live in a world with cruel people and those people aren't just cruel about race. We live in a world where people are not as accepting of differences as they should be. People say mean and stupid things all the time. It's important to have a plan of how you will handle these types of situations when they arise, because be assured, they will arise. It's also important to know when you will react and when you will ignore. What you will say to your child. How you will let him/her know that it's ok if they ignore people, but it's also ok if they say something. It's something to spend a lot of time planning for and of course thinking and praying about.
I think the most important thing I gained from this seminar was just that I need to educate myself. I don't ever want my child to feel like an outsider because he/she is adopted. I want him/her to see other families that are like ours. Whatever our family looks like and how our family is made doesn't matter to me as much as it will matter to outsiders. I need to make sure that my actions and my words always tell my child that I am proud of how he/she came to us. That adoption is the best thing that's ever happened to me.