Where to begin? Becky asked me to write a blog post from my perspective. I guess to get the full picture of where my perspective comes from I need to start at the beginning.
My life sure has changed since 7 years ago when I was a bright eyed freshly married naive woman so happy and ready to start a family. We had everything we planned for, house, 2 dogs, careers, each other and were generally pretty happy. 3 years after that my plan to start a family was on a different course. After spending the first 3 years trying to conceive, trying to get my body to work, and dealing with infertility and the devastating news that I would/should never carry or birth a child it was easy to transition our minds to Adoption. We had discussed adopting while we were dating and always thought it was something we would do. Little did we know that it was our journey to our family. After countless signatures, home studies and payments to an Adoption Agency we were approved to be parents!! Whatever that meant! Our Adoption journey was long. It was 3 years. I could go into all the details but it was the happiest of endings. One day we got a call and met our son 2 hrs later and brought him home the very next day. We became Insta Parents as we like to call ourselves. During our wait we had lots of time to think about names, parenting, cloth diapering and of course baby wearing. It was a no brainer for me. With adoption I didn’t know if our child would be new born or several months old. I wanted to bond with him/her as much as I could and in researching Attachment in Adoption baby wearing always came up as one of the key points to help with your child.
During our wait I had connected with Becky about baby wearing and of course Adoption. As we chatted about the importance of baby wearing we had spoke a little about a custom wrap and art collaboration that we could auction off to raise money for adoption. As time moved us forward the idea of a fundraiser spoke to me. Here we were paying money to an agency for a child and I was very grateful we had money saved up. I always thought in the back of my mind what would have happened if we didn’t. Adoption is expensive. Now it is not a one time payment it is stretched over the course of your first year of the process but more costs are added the longer you are on the list. What would have been my options if we couldn’t come up with the ending total of 15,000.? Well I cannot think of it because the the thought of not being a mother because of money makes me really sad. Money has never mattered to me, I am an artist, we live in a modest house and we keep our life simple. Money began to matter to me when we were facing the costs of Adoption. So the idea of raising money to help in any way we could for a birth mothers counselling or adoptive parents to bring their baby home became very important to me.
When Becky and I sat down to pick colors for the custom wrap I realized that I had 3 favorite colors. Aqua, Coral and Mustard Yellow are 3 colors I use frequently in my art. They are my primary colors. A slightly different shade then the standard Red, Blue and Yellow. Kind of like me, always slightly different. I added the Black and White that has represented the ups and downs in life and it makes the grey area in everyday. Being an artist I always looked at colors this way and it has molded my outlook on life. From there it was easy to create 4 works of art around love and adoption. The subject was very close to my heart. The creative process began on both ends as we continued to wait for our baby to arrive.
Then it happened. The call came and within 2 hrs we met our son, learned how to feed, swaddle and change his diaper. Our wait was over and our new journey with the three of us began. Becky arrived at our door a few days later with a loaner wrap until the custom one was created. Of course I needed some guidance as I hadn’t really ever wrapped a baby and the first time felt so good. It helped me not only carry him every waking moment but also to get things done. One thing the agency tells you to do as waiting parents is continue with your life, go on the adventure, keep planning and don’t hold off on things because maybe you will get the call. We learned this closer to end of the 2nd year.. We always had a plan B. So when O arrived we had things planned. I am a self employed artist so a week later I had my art retreat and 2 weeks after that I had a market I organized. We had to fit a baby into what was already planned. Looking back now I have no idea how we did it but I know wearing him for the first few months helped. I was able to create and paint with him on me. I could work on my blog and website while he was with me. It was so important for me to spend every moment with him to bond and I wasn’t going to let my work interfere with that. I was thankful I could still work and not loose a moment with him. I also didn’ t feel guilty because I was still creating a bond that was so important for his development all while full filling my commitments to my business.
As time moved forward we slowed down, art and mothering became second nature and he grew. Boy did he grow!!! He is now a few days away from turning 11 months old and our custom wraps arrived. In the past couple of months I have not carried him as much as I used too. He is bigger and on the move and loves to play on the floor. I felt bad taking him away from his toys just so he could be close to me. It was also hard to carry him on the front and do the things I needed to do. Having our new wraps has changed that mentality. I wear the wrap without him in it and he wants up and down so much it is great to have some extra support when carrying him around. I am also a week away from my biggest market ever and to get work down carrying him on my back has really freed me to go into my studio and create.
I am grateful to Becky for guiding me through baby wearing, and understanding why I needed to. I will cherish my wraps long after I carry him for the last time. Which better not be for years. My journey to motherhood was not conventional but it was mine. Including baby wearing into my journey has helped me gain confidence in my parenting. I can’t birth a child or breast feed but when I wear my baby I am a mother. My body is soothing and loving my baby, that is what it was meant to do!!