The baby we’ve been waiting for all these months has arrived. She’s beautiful and precious and perfect. Lucy Grace has come to our family at last.
My last post, about a new kind of waiting, detailed the week before we met our Lucy Girl. That was quite a week – busy, so many emotions, and not much sleep. We went to Dallas on Friday and on Friday evening met our birth mom in person. As soon as we walked in the door of the restaurant I spotted her. I don’t think I stopped staring all night. She is captivatingly beautiful, with such a sweet spirit. She’s a delight. Dinner went beautifully – so comfortable and natural. We are beyond blessed to be matched with an amazing woman who truly loves our baby.
That night I really couldn’t sleep. Everything felt so official. Next step : Meet our baby girl! All night long I lay tossing and turning, sleeping for brief intervals, and thinking, imagining, dreaming of our girl. What would she look like? What would tomorrow be like? What would her name be? So many emotions, thoughts, and questions, and mostly, so much excitement. Like Christmas Eve when you’re 7. Times 900.
At some point in all the tossing and turning, what we needed to name our daughter became clear to me. We had two name choices going into the weekend, and wanted to wait and see her face before we decided. The choices were Ava Mae and Lucy Grace. I had been leaning strongly toward Lucy, and during the night it was decided in my heart that Lucy would be her name (of course, I hoped Chris would agree with me!). As I lay there thinking, the meaning of the names swirled round and round in my head. Lucy means light. A light in dark places. Someone who shines brightly and boldly. And then there’s Grace. Grace which we did not deserve, in being blessed with a child when a child was impossible. It was perfect. In the morning I told Chris and he smiled – I knew he agreed – but he still said we had to wait to look at her to decide.
The drive to Gladney took 7 years. Seriously, every time I am in DFW I am reminded of how much I love Amarillo “traffic”. The drive really did take about an hour, and it felt like an eternity. When we got there, we met with our transitional care mom, who had taken amazing care of our sweet girl and gave us all of her information and medical records, hand and foot prints, pictures of her first week, and a beautiful blanket she made. Then we signed papers to make everything official (Eek!). Finally it was time to meet our daughter. Placement was a very emotional time for all of us – Chris and I, as well as our birth mom and her family. In order to preserve our birth mom’s privacy and Lucy’s story as her own to tell, I am going to gloss over the details of this part.
We met our beautiful daughter and I cried and cried, saying, “She’s perfect”, over and over again. Thinking back now, those are the exact words I spoke when I saw Claire for the first time. I know for every adoptive mom it’s different – feeling close and bonded right away, or it being a process. There is no right or wrong in this, just different ways of loving. For me though, it was instant. When I saw her, she was mine. No questions, no doubts. She was my girl. Chris was smitten too, and of course Claire was so excited.
During Placement we decided on our little girl’s name. Lucy Grace – a light into the darkness and a picture of God’s grace to us. Also, in my research of the name Lucy, I learned that the first African American woman to win a major sports title was named Lucy Slowe. Since we are a sports family and our birth mom is an athlete, this made the name seem even more perfect.
Being at Gladney and leaving with OUR DAUGHTER seemed surreal. It was almost exactly a year ago that we first went to Gladney for our orientation. Walking through the building last October our hearts were lit with excitement thinking of the baby that would someday be ours. And now she really was.
We took Lucy back to Chris’ sister’s apartment and loved her up. The whole drive home I just stared at her sweet face. Some friends of ours who live in DFW came by to meet our girl and it was so nice sharing our excitement with Chris’ sister, Chelsea, and our friends.
We drove back to Amarillo that night, and can I just say that doing things with two children does not take twice as long. It takes six times as long. We stopped to pick up food at Burger King on the road and it took 45 minutes. 45 minutes, people. We finally made it home and came in the house to a beautiful welcome from our dear friends. I’m pretty sure we have the best friends on the planet.
The next day was spent admiring Lucy and showing her off. Claire is absolutely in awe of her little sister. I was so worried about how she would respond and she has blown us out of the water with her caring, nurturing spirit and willingness to help. I am so thankful for her and her tender heart.
And sweet Lucy. She is a joy and she is already a light. She is an answer to so many prayers. Not just ours, but a whole army who prayed for us along this journey. And now she is home.