I don't really know what I'm meant to be doing at the moment, what I'm supposed to be thinking or feeling. J's answer to this is that, Claudia, you don't need to be feeling something ALL THE TIME. Obviously, that's the Y chromosome talking, because what kind of crazy is that? We're probably looking at somewhere between days and weeks before we see our baby's face and our whole world turns upside down - I'm sure I'm feeling something, I'm just not entirely sure what it is.
In the meantime, I've pretty much regressed to being a teenager. I lie around the house and listen to sad music, and I've gone back to listening really hard to lyrics and being sure that they mean something. Girl sailor? By the Shins? You know the lines that go: A stronger girl would shake this off in flight, / and never give it more than just a frowning hour / But you have let your heart decide/ Loss has conquered you... I'm sure that's about me! And if I had a pound for every time I've listened to this , my adoption would have funded itself. (Eternally grateful to Lori for sending me that last song, by the way).
While I'm lying moodily on the sofa bonding with my ipod, I wonder. Does this huge weight of anticipation mean that I'm not allowed to find things difficult once the baby actually arrives? Jana Wolff, in her great book 'Secret Thoughts of an Adoptive Mother' has a chapter entitled 'Adopted poop doesn't smell any different' and I'm thinking about this a lot at the moment. Not just the poop, but the fact that I will have waited so long for this child, and I really hope he or she will change my life for the better, but the concensus seems to be that parenthood involves a lot of hard work and sleepless nights and is not just about the cashmere blankets and the smell of baby head. And while it's true that when I hear people complaining about their children, I want to beat them with a stick them until they realise how lucky they are*, I also know that sleep deprivation is awful, and vomit is gross, and there will be days when I just want to scream, and at the moment I just can't reconcile that knowledge with my intense longing to finally meet my child. And the heartache that I don't even know when that will be.
I guess part of the problem is this: in order to adopt, you have to be so determined to do it. You have to be totally convinced that it's a good idea. You have to want that child so badly in order to cope with the adoption process rollercoaster of humiliation and despair. You have to put all your plans on hold and move to Liminal State. But then, the baby comes, the goal is achieved, and... what then?
I have no idea.
*(Not as effective as you might think!)