In January I enrolled in a course called Mondo Beyondo. The kind of good it did me is hard to quantify, but mostly it allowed me to believe in my dreams in a different way than I'd believed in them before. In fact, one of the very first exercises is one of the things that has helped me most through our adoption process. In the exercise, we were provided a sheet to print out that had all sorts of affirmations on it (things like "You have everything you need to begin" and "Something greater is holding you") in little rectangles that we were encouraged to cut apart and put in a bowl somewhere that we would see it. One rectangle was left blank for each participant to fill in with something that should be remembered and affirmed. On my blank rectangle, I wrote, "Everything is happening in the right way at the right time." I've shuffled through the affirmations from time to time, but that one is the one always on top; it proved to be of infinite value to me as I navigated the end of the paper chase and the beginning of waiting and, frankly, chasing more paper (oh, I do love filling out grant applications--you know I do!). Every time something comes up that isn't as I'd prefer it to be, I look at that little slip of paper at the top of the bowl, and I remember that. I repeat it under my breath. And I believe it. In my core, I am absolutely certain this is true.
As most of you know by now, Jarod and I are open to adopting a child with special needs. We are realistic about what we can and can't handle, but we are very open. On Friday evening after work, I checked the waiting child list and there was a baby on it whose needs were definitely something we could handle. I sent the request to review her information immediately. And then today I came down with a case of Adoption OCD while I waited to hear if we were the only family interested, or if someone else would get the information first. I kept close watch over my e-mail. I took my cell phone with me into the bathroom. I skipped a stop at Marshall's so I could get home and check my e-mail sooner. And then I got word that, yes, another family had inquired about this baby, and that we were second in line. I was disappointed. I'd looked at her sweet face all weekend long and hoped and hoped and hoped. And then it wasn't meant to be, at least not today. The chances that the other family will choose not to adopt this baby are slim. She's probably not our Magnolia.
It's a bummer for sure. But then I look at that bowl on the counter, and I remember that we are waiting not in line, but on the right things to happen at the right time. Today wasn't the right time. And I'm okay with that.
Another thing I took away from class was that to have dreams fulfilled, I must move in the direction of those dreams. To be honest, I'd been slacking a little bit in that department--letting some grant paperwork slide, not getting quite as much money into our savings as I'd planned. And while there were legitimate reasons for both the paperwork and the lack of funds being funneled directly into the adoption account, the truth is that I could have made adjustments to make things work out. If anything, staring into the face of a baby that just might have been ours was the kick in the rear I needed to remember to proceed with gusto in the direction of this dream.
Thanks, Mondo Beyondo.