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Voices From the Heart

a collection of writings from those touched by adoption

"The Day She Was Born"
by Jill Hopster

My first glimpse of her was about 6:45 the night she was born. She had been born at 6:11 a.m. But I slept, unaware of her decision to join our family early.

My mother and I were enroute to her when the cell phone rang shortly after 2:00 that afternoon. In our two-day journey, it was the only time the phone had rung. I pounced on the phone, wondering what had happened.

It was "the agency". Yes, in answer to my first question, she was "still a girl". Yes, she was healthy. Yes, the birthmother was still confident in her decision to place her for adoption.

The first phone call. "Hi Daddy". He responded, "Hi." I repeated myself, "Hi Daddy". He said, "Hi." I said it again, "Hi Daddy". He said, "Does that mean what I think it means?" "Yes, Daddy."

At the hospital, I greet a very tired looking young woman with a warm hug. I brush the hair from her eyes and ask how she's feeling. We quietly chat for a few minutes. Then my mother quietly says, "Jill.... look". I then notice the bassinette in the room. I look at the woman who was part of our miracle, and ask, "Is that her?" She nods at me.

I look at her, awestruck. She's so perfect. I gently unwrap her from her blanket and start quietly counting. Ten fingers. I unwrap a little further and see the biggest feet I'd ever seen on an infant. I laugh as I quietly count. Yep. Ten toes.

I pick up the tiniest little bundle I've ever before held. She wiggles and stretches as her sleep is interrupted, then snuggles right in. She fits just right. She's so soft and warm.

With reluctance, we realize that we've been in the hospital room for two hours, and there is a very tired young woman who needs her rest. After hugging the tired young woman and then kissing many little fingers and toes for one more time, we leave the two of them behind.

A very tired new Mommy and a very tired new Grannie go find a hotel room, sure that sleep will evade them.

A very tired new Daddy is greeted by a very eager new Mommy at the airport at 5:30 the next morning. Mommy takes Daddy to the hotel room, where Daddy tries to sleep, but now that he's here, sleep evades him.

Mommy, Daddy, and Grannie wait for the phone to ring. We wait for "the agency" to call to tell us we should come to the hospital. The call comes, and we leave.

When we get there, she is in her bassinette. Daddy reaches down and touches her finger. He has a look of awe in his face. They quickly usher all of us into a private room so we can sign papers. They wheel her bassinette in, but place her all the way across the room. Mommy can feel Daddy's frustration.

We sign papers and we sign papers and we sign papers. She gets fussy. Daddy gets up and walks over to her bassinette. He reaches in and caresses her. She calms down. He rolls her bassinette a little bit close to Mommy and Daddy.

We sign papers and we sign papers and we sign papers. She starts crying. Mommy stands up, walks over to her, gently picks her up and hands her to Daddy. Daddy eagerly takes her into his arms.

We're a family.

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