This is a little of the story of Noah's arrival. I am not going to give all the details because some things need to be kept for Noah and some things I just don't think are fair to "D" to tell everyone. Because I don't want anyone to thing she is anything but an amazing person who gave Joe and I and our family the most amazing gift, the gift of a life we could not have on our own and that my friend is pretty amazing.
So our flight leaves Sunday around 1 from Pittsburgh and we fly to Atlanta. We have about a 2 hour lay over so Joe, my mom, she went with us, and I go and get some dinner. It is a 5 hour flight from Atlanta to Las Vegas so we want dinner before we leave. We are sitting talking and I start to cry we are one step closer to meeting her. Just as we are talking my phone rings I have a text message it is "D" asking when we leave and will get to Vegas. I tell her we are on our way and give her our flight information. We board our flight we are on our way. We get to Vegas around 9:30, which is 12:30 here in PA. We get off our flight and head to baggage claim and there stands "D" with signs for us and her 5-year-old son "T". She met us with BIG hugs and pictures and signs and just like we were going to see family. Now keep in mind this is the FIRST time we have ever met, we have just formed such an amazing bond over the phone.
The following day we pick "D" up and go to lunch and spend hours talking and visiting. We head to the doctor for her last visit. She gets called back into the room and turns to me and said well are you coming? I am not going to say no! We get to her room and the nurse starts asking questions and said to "D" and who is this and looks at me and she said this is the babies mom! I start to cry, I am such a baby! Then the tears get worse, I get to hear his heart beat for the first time, it is a sound I will NEVER forget. "D" and I cry together at the sound of it and that we got the share it together. After the doctor's office we head to the hospital to get registered for tomorrow, her C section has been scheduled for 7:30 PM. Are you kidding what are we going to do ALL day tomorrow?
We get up on Tuesday morning and decide to head to Hoover Dam and Lake Mead to keep us busy and not just sitting and watching the clock. It was nice spending the day with Joe and my mom. I didn't think about the fact in just few hours the child that may be our son is going to be born. We got back to our hotel for dinner before we left for the hospital. We stayed at this amazing Marriott, with the best staff ever, it had a full kitchen, living room/dining room combo, 2 bedroom and a full bath. In fact it was bigger the first apartment Joe and I had. Anyway, we cooked dinner and sat to eat. I remember saying, I feel like I should have gone to church today. So the three of us, my mom , Joe and I all held hands and prayed. Prayed the "D" the baby made it through surgery ok, that the baby was healthy and that God was in our presence of the next few days. Before we know it it's time to go to the OR, we go to a back room, "D" and I, they take her into the room to get her ready and have me in the hall putting on a gown. The next thing I know the nurse that had been taking care of us came out into the hall and put her arm around me and said, she wants her mom. I feel my heart drop and I don't know what to do or say. Her mom came back to the hall and they got a gown on her and the doctor was there washing up, he looks at me as I am crying and said to the nurse does she not want her in there and the nurse said yes but she wants her mom too, they will only let 1 person in with her. He said come on let's go your son is about to be born. The next few minutes were nothing I will ever be able to put into words and I feel bad that Joe was not able to be there with me. I do know that I knew in the instant my life was never going to be the same again, even if this baby didn't leave this hospital with me, my life was going to be changed. I have only ever experienced that kind of instant love 2 other times in my life, but yet it was so different.
The next 48 hours were spent sleeping on the pull out bed in the hospital with "D". I think I left the hospital for a total of 3 hours and that was not even 3 straight hours. To some people it may seem a little strange that we did that, but we had become so close over the past few months. To be honest I think she needed that time with both Noah and I, to be ok with her decision. I got VERY little sleep those few days. Monday night I was up just nervous about Tuesday and then very little at the hospital. So needless to say by the end of the week I was spent. Thursday morning we found out that she and the baby would be discharged from the hospital. In so many ways this was bad, because she could not sign paper, they were called TPR, until Friday night. So we needed to get a plan together as to where she and the baby would go until then. Everyone was trying to talk her into staying at the hospital but she was sent on leaving. The more they tried to talk her into staying the worse it got. The hospital social worker came into talk to us before I left to go shower and get the car seat. The feeling I had that morning is a feeling I never want to feel again in my life. The social worker stopped me in the hall to see if everything was ok and how things were going. I lost it, I was hysterical crying, telling her I know that I was never going to see her or Noah again. I truly felt in my heart that she was going to be gone when I came back to get her and Noah. She and I talked a little and she promised she would go and speak with "D" and call me. I kept saying don't make me come back and find an empty room please don't. Not long after I got back to the hotel to shower she called and said that "D" was worried I wasn't going to come back for her and the baby. I realized at that moment that God wanted me to feel that way, to think I was never going to see the child I had grown to love and think of as my son. To feel so helpless in the situation. He wanted me to feel that way so I could feel what she was feeling so I could better understand and appreciate what was about to happen. I try not to think of that moment very often because I can't breath when I do. Anyway we returned to the hospital and "D" was there waiting for us. Plans were set up for her to stay in a room at the same hotel as us so we could all be close together. We had a wonderful evening visiting and spending time together, her parents came to visit and brought her 5 year son "T" to visit and he spent the night with her. She said she wanted 1 night with her two boys before Noah left, as hard as it was for me I could not stop her from taking him. At one point she was sitting on the sofa with Noah and was sobbing and talking real soft with him. Looking back now I realize she wa saying good-bye, but at that moment I didn't know. She went to her room to get "T" ready for bed and was coming back for Noah, she never did.
The next day was THE day, the social worker was coming at 7:30 pm for "D" to sign TPR. We took Noah to the doctor at 11:30. On the way back to the hotel "D" said she would like just her and I to spend sometime together. We left Noah with Joe and my mom and she and I went to lunch. We spent hours talking, talking about everything, our childhood, our dreams our goals. The things we both wish for Noah, things I think she wanted me to know to be able to tell him when the time comes. I found it so odd she didn't want to spend the time with Noah. We almost didn't make it back to the hotel in time for the social workers to come. We did get to spend a little bit of time with him and then the came. We all visited for a little bit and then they asked us to leave. We let them use our room so "D" would have some privacy as she made a decision that was going to change her life forever. We waited for what seemed like hours in the lobby of the hotel, in reality it was more like hour to an hour and a half. Our social worker rounded the corner and our eyes met and she smiled, and I lost it. I cried to finally be holding "our" child, for the craziness of the week that I did not speak about to be done and for the pain "D" must be feeling. Noah is perfect in every way and for being such a small little boy has answered so many prayers. My mom said to me your face is going to hurt from smiling and I said never besides I cried alot of tears to be able to smile like this.
This is where I feel things with this part of the story ends. Some of the things that happened since then I want to keep just for Noah.
We want to thank you all for coming along for this ride with us, for your love, support and prayers. The thing is the ride has just started. We plan on keeping with the blog and we move through this adopt and as Noah grows. So you are all invited to continue on the ride with us if you would like.
Thank you for everything.
Melinda, Joe and Noah