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stay steadfast my soul

that darn bethel song. i think it's going to be my life song.

we were anticipating home study approval by the end of september. the end of september has come and gone, and we are still in the waiting. and i remind myself continually "he's in the waiting." but really sometimes i just want to take my breast pump and throw it at the wall because i'm tired of waiting. and pumping. 15+ hours a week. pumping is my part time job right now. and each week of waiting marks another 15+ hours i will spend pumping. hence, wanting to throw my breast pump at the wall. chief of all sinners here, just being real.

i don't know when we will be approved to be a waiting family. i hope it won't be another month. but who knows. i bought a cupcake halloween costume for bina and a pea pod one for baby, in case we were placed by halloween. that pea pod costume cost me $4.50. but i think not having a baby to fill it will cost my heart more than i bargained for. lesson learned.

the last week of september i was checking my email what seemed like every five minutes, anticipating the "congrats, you're now a waiting family!" email. i consoled myself as i pumped by thinking it will all be worth it because by the end of the week, we will be waiting to be matched with birth parents and placed with a baby, and soon i will no longer have to pump! when friday, september 29 rolled around and i still hadn't heard anything, i started losing a bit of hope. and then we got email confirmation that approval was not happening that week. 15 more hours of pumping. or this week. 15 more hours of pumping. or next week. 15 more hours of pumping.

i didn't really take that news well. i was disappointed, discouraged, deflated. those feelings quickly turned into anger. we had a family dinner that night to celebrate a birthday and i was hoping we would be able to share the news that we were a waiting family. instead i got to share that i don't know when we will be a waiting family. the best laid plans! at one point i didn't even want to go to dinner. but then i kicked myself into gear and decided that i should use it as an opportunity to dress all cute and enjoy not having a newborn attached to my boob. and it all worked out. the food was amazing. everyone, go to brighton bar and grill. and eat all the foods.

on saturday, october 1 we decided to redo our front landscaping.

i decided not to pump. we worked all day in the yard after picking up bushes and a tree from a nursery in plymouth. my dad watched bina for us for a few hours to allow us to do our landscaping shopping without our adorable little monkey in tow. it was a full day of hard work, sunshine, and family. we were proud of our work at the end of it. i didn't think we would finish it all in a day, but we did. now hopefully everything lives. but if it doesn't, we will be taking that nursery up on their one year warranty to replace any deceased purchases!

on sunday, october 2 we were scheduled to volunteer in the church nursery (the one with babies, not plants). we've been volunteering in the nursery once a month for the last year or so. the nursery is for babes 0-24 months. we had never had a newborn before. until sunday. and not just one newborn, twins! two gorgeous little eight week old brown babies. when i walked up and saw the matching car seats, i just about died and went to heaven. i held one or the other the entire time. i got to feed each of them their bottles while gazing into their beautiful brown eyes. i got to rock and bounce them. i got to change their diapers. i even got some sweet smiles. it was as if god saw me, saw my broken spirit, and said, "there, there, brittain. your time will come. have patience. i'm in the waiting. in the meantime, here's a little gift to give you your baby fix and keep you going." so after my saturday off pumping, i resumed. and i'm still going. stay steadfast my soul. he's in the waiting.

one thing i've come to realize this last week (shocker) is that this is our first rodeo with adoption. and i've spoken to a lot of people about their experiences with adoption. i only know one woman who has adopted an infant of color, who happens to be my mothers of preschoolers (MOPS) table leader and is also in my bible study fellowship (BSF) discussion group. her family was approved on a friday, placed on a monday. even before approval they had been approached about several placements. i don't have an experience yet, so i'm basing my expectations off of the experiences of others. when we didn't get any placement offers after our final interviews, i wondered if something was wrong with us. i doubt we're going to be approved on a friday and placed on a monday. our home study approval will likely be taking longer than the three months it took for my other friend who used our same agency. i can't base my expectations on the experiences of others. my experience is uniquely my own, and my expectations should reflect that. otherwise i set myself up for disappointment and failure.

a friend of mine kindly informed me tonight that this waiting is actually the easy part. made me think of how i thought being pregnant was hard, and then when bina was born i was all "OH MY GOD GO BACK INSIDE THAT WAS SO MUCH EASIER THAN THIS." stay steadfast my soul. the tension of all this unknown. it's killing the recovering perfectionist control freak in me. i'm dying. a slow terrible death. and you know what? it's necessary. god is refining me. it hurts like hell. and i still want to throw my breast pump at the wall. but he's making progress on me. slow, steady progress. maybe the quicker i learn, the faster it will all go. or maybe not. still, whatever the case, stay steadfast my soul.

i've been feeling all the feels the last month or so. so many unrelated things weighing on me. if i let them, they paralyze me. i've been seeking to do more self care lately. i started attending a yoga class once a week. i dropped off (stopped reading) all of my books except for brene brown's braving the wilderness. it's the closest to a novel that i'm going to get right now. i'm attempting to tune into my feelings, notice them. peel them back and figure out what's triggering them, if necessary. last week i took a break from instagram and news. it was very liberating. i took pictures only to send to david, not to post on social media. my moments were truly mine. not on display for anyone but me and my husband. taking instagram breaks is something i am thinking about doing on a regular basis, just to keep myself in check. i'm attempting to give myself more grace. give myself the gift of changing my mind if i need to, and not feeling bad about it. give myself the gift of loving myself, just the way i am. not wishing i were different but fully embracing who god made me to be. the unique personality he gave me. and recognizing when that personality is veering towards unhealthy manifestations - calling them what they are - and then working to veer my personality back towards healthy manifestations. it's a process. and practice makes progress.

side note, i have weaned off of my generic lexapro. woohoo! and i started having some of the same hypochondriac struggles i had last time i tried to wean down. but this time i recognized them for what they were. i acknowledged them. and then let them go. practice makes progress. stay steadfast my soul, we're gonna get there.

tomorrow afternoon i head to grass lake for my church's annual women's retreat. last year i almost didn't go because of my struggle with insomnia/anxiety/depression. but then i did. and god affirmed what he had been speaking to me and healed my heart a little more. i'm feeling fragile again this year, for very different reasons. the uncertainty of the status of our adoption journey is one of the many things weighing on me. i anticipate that god is going to use this retreat to again affirm the things he has been speaking. again it comes at a hard, but good, time. i'm ready. let's do this.

and so. stay steadfast my soul. my time will come.

hello there.

brittain here. just sharing my journey day to day with lots of laughs along the way.

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