Last night we had our foster care class, and my dominant emotion was anger. or bitterness. or grief. Or a mix of all three.
I spent the day hanging out with a pregnant co-worker and shopping for my best friend's baby shower. I am THRILLED for both of them.
But I am bitter that I don't get to just make a baby.
I am bitter that we can't have a kid who is biologically both of ours.
I am bitter that I have to go through classes to build a family when it feels like any idiot on the street gets to just accidentally make it happen.
I am bitter that I don't get all the mommy milestones of announcing my pregnancy to my husband, my family, my community; of having a traditional baby shower; of daydreaming about our baby's characteristics taken from our own; of choosing my baby's name.
I am bitter that I don't get to fight off strangers who want to touch my belly.
I am bitter that we have to learn about drug exposure and abuse and insecure attachment styles - I'm bitter that we might need all that info at our disposal when we have our kids because they'll potentially have been through hell before they get to us.
I am bitter that my gain when we do get to adopt is someone else's loss.
I am bitter that a child I care for over the course of a year or more will be returned to a "minimally adequate" home.
All of these are important for me to feel. If someone told me to "choose happy" or look on the bright side, I'd probably bite their heads off. But...
I am lucky.
I am lucky to live in a county with so. much. support for foster families.
I am lucky to have parents who fostered children and know what it's like.
I am lucky to have sisters who are rooting for us and our adopted babes, who will see our kiddos as their nieces and nephews as much as if they were blood relatives.
I am lucky to have Pat. A partner who followed my lead in research; who followed my gut in choosing foster care; who is flexible if we find that this isn't really the path for us. A partner who wants kids; who can tell from my posture that I'm in a piss-poor mood during class before I even tell him that I'm angry; who doesn't question all the chocolate I buy because I'm an emotional eater and it's part of how I'm getting through this; who will be there with me for every step of this; who had a strong mother and knows I can be that too; who recognizes that we are going to parent and run our household as a team, not as a homemaker and a breadwinner.
I am lucky.