To say that our family is excited about our little boy is definitely an understatement! My mom was nice enough to come and stay with me this week and help out with Rylin and some things around the house. She gave me some good motherly advise, and I really don't know what I will do without her here! We both cried today when she left. Both my brothers and their families have now visited Rylin and my Grandmother came to see him today. All his cousins were so excited to meet him and they all think he is pretty cool. Here are a few pictures from this weekend.
Cousins Emily & Mitchell Nanny and Cousin Luke
MiMi & Papa
His cousins also colored pictures for him to go on the mobile over his changing table. Some of the pictures were of themselves, Duke, the horse they all ride at MiMi & Papa's, and of Rylin.
We took a Halloween picture of all the cousins tonight.
Many of you have asked how Duke is taking this new addition to the family. So far, because Rylin hasn't cried too much, I think he likes him pretty well. When we sit on the sofa he likes to smell his feet and today he rest his chin on Rylin's back while he was sleeping on my chest. I think they will probably be good friends (especially since Duke doesn't have a tail that can be pulled!)
Thanks for all your kind welcomes to little Rylin! Here are a few more pictures from yesterday and today. He had his first check up this morning and has gained 5oz. They tested his blood again for jaundice, but thought that he looked good. He is still pretty happy and content, and doesn't really fuss much (though everyone jumps up as soon as we hear a whimper!) No doubt he's already spoiled!
I know that everyone has been waiting patiently, so here are a few quick pictures from the hospital of Rylin. I will post more later today. He is already changing so much.
45 minutes old and very alert
We spent some time yesterday at the hospital with T, who I will now just call Tess since most of you probably noticed my delirious "slip up" in the last post. (She told me it was fine to use her name on the blog) We were able to be there for Rylin's discharge to get all the necessary information, and then Tess and her mom took him home to her house around 4pm. We had to wait all afternoon, and our parents showed up around 7:30pm. Finally, around 10pm, the girls from our agency arrived with our paperwork and we made it back over to Tess's house at 11pm. The entrustment ceremony was short, but very special and we were so glad that we were able to tape it so that Rylin can one day watch it (when he knows whats going on!) We made it back home around midnight, and we were all pretty worn out. Jordan changed his first diaper but somehow I was the one who managed to get peed on! You could say I didn't sleep much last night because I kept wanting to check on him in the bassinet. Jordan got up and fed him at 4:30, and then MiMi got her first snuggle time around 7:00. We are so excited to be home and Jordan and I are still in shock that we are officially parents! Rylin is so far a very good baby (not saying a lot for 2 1/2 days old!) He likes to snuggle and is very alert when he is awake. He has a high pitched little squeal that is pretty cute, long feet and fingers, and soft black hair on the back of his head. He is not a little baby, and has a double chin with a dimple right in the middle! Pretty sure he already has us wrapped around his finger! I will post later today with some pictures from last night. Thanks again to all of you who have prayed and encouraged us. We feel so blessed right now that I couldn't even begin to explain our joy!
Thanks for all of the sweet messages! If I have learned anything in this process, its that I have the best friends and family in the world...and I mean that! I thank God every day for you guys!
We had another busy day at the hospital. Jordan and I actually got some sleep last night(with the help of meds) and then got up this morning to explore the presents that were awaiting us in our hallway. We are now fully stocked on all the essentials, and I still can't believe my family had a shower without me! I laugh every time I picture it. We got dressed and returned to the hospital around noon where we found T in a room with her Mom and a few friends. The maternity workers from the agency came later. We got to visit with them and hold and feed Rylin. We even got to meet the birthfather (D), for the first time. He was a little overwhelmed by the situation (and I don't think a room full of girls helped), but Jordan got a chance to have some guy time with him out in the hall. We can't begin to imagine what this is like for him, but we are excited to have the lines of communication open for the future. After a while, T's friends left along with the maternity workers, and we were able to share some time with she and Rylin. She is doing well, and is feeling good about her decision. She was open about being afraid of how she would feel to hold him and to see us with him, but said that it has actually been reassuring. We all marveled in how great this whole process has been, and how comfortable we are with one another. As my mom told me tonight, I know it is truly an answer to prayer. Jordan and I are overwhelmed every time we think about how many people are praying for us, and we know that this whole situation is so much bigger than ourselves.
Tomorrow we will go back to the hospital to prepare for T and Rylin to be discharged. T will take him to her house for the relinquishment ceremony and we will meet her there after signing some paperwork. Please continue to pray for us, especially Jordan as he is having to read a letter we wrote to T. We know that everyone will be a ball of emotions, but we are so excited we could burst!
I'm typing this with tears in my eyes and a whole days worth of craziness on my mind, so forgive me if I babble a little and if I don't make perfect sense. But to the important stuff...Rylin Marshall is here! All 8lbs 3oz and 21inches! Not that I'm partial or anything, but he's the cutest baby I've ever seen! Rylin is the name T picked for him, which comes from her middle name Riley, and Jordan and I loved it and decided on Marshall for his middle name. We are excited beyond words, but I want to back up and start from the beginning.
Jordan and I met T and her mom for dinner last night at Chili's as we had planned earlier in the week. We had fun talking about some crazy subjects we hadn't explored previously in the last couple of weeks, and eating lots of onion rings and jalapenos(T insisted so that it might induce labor!) After three hours, we finally parted ways and headed home. For whatever reason, Jordan and I could NOT sleep. Earlier in the week, my co workers had a going away/baby shower for us, and yesterday, the sweet girls from church threw us a shower, so I was sorting baby things and writing thank you cards. We finally hit the sack around 2:30am. Little did we know that we weren't the only ones awake! As we were getting ready for church this morning, our home phone rang, and luckily(since we rarely do), I answered it. It was T's mom telling us that she had been admitted and was already dilated to a 3. Our preparations quickly turned to mass ciaos as we ran around the house doing a mixture of tidying and getting dressed. We made it to the hospital around ten, and the wait began. We were immediately taken back to her room, where we stayed with her through some rough contractions until she could finally get her epidural around lunch time. Some of her friends arrived, so because of the limited amount of visitors, we waited in the L&D waiting room. She slowly progressed throughout the day, and we were able to grab something to eat for a late lunch and return. We got to visit with a lot of her friends in the waiting room, and they really went out of their way to make us feel accepted. Her sister was able to drive up from Austin and be there too. Finally, around 8pm they told us that she was ready to deliver. A few of her friends snuck into the hallway to listen outside the door, and came running to the waiting room to announce that they heard crying! Her mom quickly followed to announce his arrival and after T was given a chance to hold him, they let us come back. I really can't begin to describe what it was like because I was in a bit of a nervous haze. Her mom handed him to me as soon as we came in the room and I couldn't believe how big he really was! He squealed and squirmed, but he was still cute! I handed him to Jordan tightly bundled and then it happened...one tear ran down Jordan's face, and the waterworks began for the rest of the women in the room! He quickly handed him back to me. Poor T was in so much pain, and the nurses and Dr.'s were taking FOREVER to give her anything to help. Rylin was squealing in little bursts at this point, so a nurse came and ushered us into a private room so that Jordan and I could hold and rock him. It was a pretty special time, and I am really grateful that the hospital was so accommodating. After a while, they came to take him to the nursery. We followed them so that we could take pictures, and then we went back to check on T. By this time she was thankfully feeling much better(thank God for Morphine), and we got to chat with her for a while before leaving for the night. We arrived home to a hallway full of gifts, because what I didn't mention, was that my family was planning a baby shower for us today! Though I didn't quite make it home for the party, they continued without me! I think my mom probably had a blast standing in and opening gifts. Then my cousin was kind enough to drop it off at our house before we even got home. I really have the best family!
We are still grinning from ear to ear, and we would love to share all our pictures, but for now we will wait to post on the blog. There is still a lot to happen in the next 48 hours, and we are respecting T in that this is her time with her precious baby boy. Although there is so much joy and hope in the continuing relationship of open adoption, there are still some very real losses for T. Please pray that she can enjoy this time with him and that she would be comforted in the days to come.
I'm not sure who's heart was racing faster, the baby's or mine! I just got back home from the doctors appointment with T. We met near the hospital, and then got to wait a while in the office for her to see the Doctor along with many other VERY pregnant women (including one that they were sending down to Labor & Delivery when we arrived!). It actually was nice because it gave us some time to talk. We really do get along great and I think both feel pretty comfortable with each other. She joked about how much weight she has gained during the pregnancy and asked me some about our infertility journey. We talked about past jobs, her school plans, and our dogs! She was noticeably uncomfortable today, and was hoping to get news from the Dr. that she was delivering...tonight! Unfortunately for her, he didn't exactly say that. The office was completely cool about letting me go back with her in the exam room where the Dr. measured her tummy and then listened to the heartbeat. I was amazed at how quickly it was thumping! He then checked to see if she was dilated any, and reported that it looked like she wasn't quite ready for labor yet. So far the little guy is still head down and everything looks good. They scheduled her for another appointment next week barring that she doesn't go into labor before then. I was able to get home a little earlier than I would had I gone to work, and Jordan and I are excited about taking our friends the Daniels dinner tonight and visiting their new twins! Tomorrow we will meet back up at the agency to go over the hospital and openness plans with T and her mom. This is where we will talk about what will happen at the hospital, what the relinquishment ceremony will look like, and our hopes for our relashionship after the birth.
Jordan and I had a nice weekend of working on some last minute details of the nursery. I managed to find some inexpensive curtains and rod at Target, and we found a great lime green lamp at a mid-century modern estate sale on Saturday. After rewiring and changing the shade to a homemade concoction of cork, I think it turned out pretty cute. It's hard to tell from the pictures, but it's actually much lighter than our green walls, and the cork lets little twinkles of light out all over the shade.
Sunday afternoon, while my husband and puppy snoozed through football, I tirelessly sewed away at my had-to-have-it-but-can't-afford-it-so-i'll-make-it mobile. I now completely understand why the original maker charges so much, and I am happy to be finished. It turned out pretty much how I wanted, but just don't look too close!
T and her mom came over for dinner Sunday night and we had a good time talking and getting to know each other better. She liked the nursery and Duke (he was on his best behavior again) and we made plans for Wednesday's Dr. appointment. She told us that she had gone to the hospital on Friday night with contractions, only to be sent home, so hopefully we can find out more of an eta (ha!) at the Dr.'s visit.
We also got to talk to her about names. This has been one of the most frequently asked questions that Jordan and I have received. Do you have a name? Does the birthmother get to pick a name? Do you get to pick the name? Well...to answer a few questions and to keep you guessing: In a typical adoption with our agency, the birthmother is given the option to name the baby at birth and this name is on the original birth certificate. The adoptive parents can choose to keep the name or change the name, and this is put on the second birth certificate given at the time the adoption is finalized (6 mts after placement). Because we are in an open adoption, Jordan and I decided early on that we wanted our baby's name to have both a part of the birthfamily and us, so we picked a few names and tried to remain open (not getting too excited about one in particular) thinking we would decide this with the birthmother. As it turns out, T had picked a name for her baby early in her pregnancy when she was still thinking she would parent. She told us the name at our match meeting, hoping that we might use it as a middle name. So that's where I'll stop. What I will say is that we do have a name, but we are waiting to reveal it until the little guy is here. The good news is, you won't have to wait long!
We have been so overwhelmed (in a good way) by all of the encouraging messages and calls from our friends and family, and we feel so, so blessed by everyone that God has surrounded us with during this process. We really don't have words to let you know what all your shared excitement means to us.
I think that Tuesday's news is finally starting to sink in! Jordan and I both got to talk to T tonight on the phone, and like us, she is noticeably relieved that the decision has been made and I think that she is really ready to have this baby now! She says that she is pretty uncomfortable so she's hoping that means he won't wait too long. We chatted about nothing special and then she asked me to go with her to her Dr.'s appointment on Wednesday! We will hopefully get to have her over this weekend to spend some more time together.
Jordan did manage to complete the construction of the crib and changing table (which was no small task), and I finally settled on some curtains. We plan to buy a few more essentials this weekend and try to get some sleep (though i still haven't figured out how!) Here are a few pictures of the assembly process...
Duke is very curious
I told my co-workers that it looked like one of the closets we sell!
She picked us! Just got the call a little while ago and proceeded to have the most awkward speaker phone conversation ever with the birthmother and the girls at the agency! Amidst tears and laughter I tried to express our excitement...and then call Jordan and blubber out something resembling good news. I am still a little in shock and disbelief!
So for some details I have been holding back...
We will be parents sooner than we could have ever imagined! Birthmother, who I will call T, is due on the 26th of this month with a little boy! We are so happy that our crib and changer made it in this week. Jordan will be speedily putting it together I'm sure. AHHHH! I don't even have one diaper or onsie! I know we will figure it all out. Back to details though...T lives REALLY close to us and we know that it is not a coincidence. She is eager to be a part of our family, and we are excited to get to know her more in the next couple of weeks. Again, thank you for all the prayers and notes of encouragement. Jordan and I have felt so loved this last week, and really so appreciative of the friends and family that we have been blessed with!
Just wanted to update everyone that we have not heard back about our meeting with the birthmother on Tuesday. For those that haven't talked to us, it was a nerve racking morning, but we were at ease as soon as we met her. She is a kind, smart girl and we know that she is taking this decision seriously and doing what is best for she and her baby. Thanks for all your calls, texts, and emails. We are again overwhelmed by the amount of love and support we have received from friends and family.
We finally bit the bullet and ordered our crib and changing table this week. I had originally planned on buying a modern and affordable one at IKEA, but then found this cute one from Babies R Us that was just what I was looking for. After calling around to different stores in our area, I found out I would have to order it online and that it might take a few weeks, so we decided to go ahead and get the ball rolling. I know that we could be waiting for quite a while, but I get nervous thinking about getting a call and being unprepared. I also get really excited about putting the nursery together, so I didn't want to miss out on any of the fun by waiting to the last minute and rushing to do so. Here is the preview, and I'll be sure to update with pictures of the real thing when my handy husband puts it together.