Yet Another piece of news
"You won't fall, I promise"


I’ve been incapable of the introspection required for blogging because of all the powerful emotions thundering through me like carthorses but now, I will in fact attempt a narrative, before I start forgetting details. It’s like trying to contain an ocean in a thimble but some sort of record is essential. It’s been quite a week. Last Wednesday 16th March, (auspiciously my nephew Spike’s eleventh birthday), I was leaving the house for choir when I got an email from Agency Boss Lady, which proceeded thusly:

How are you doing?? I believe I have wonderful news for you, you have a son!

(Which words were pre-emptive, really.) Details from the social worker and hospital followed below. A baby boy had been born on the 12th to a mother who wished to have him adopted. By us, specifically. (!!) He was still in the hospital. The birthmother had received no prenatal care*, he was a little small for dates (though on “normal” charts) and had some other significant challenges*. But he seemed remarkably well; his test results were all good, considering.

I nearly fainted dead away on the spot; but somehow did remain standing and contained myself enough to go to choir. I told Real Friend, also in the Alto section, a bit of the story. Real was most excited, tentatively so, like me. It felt like a dream. That evening another email arrived, this one from Irish Agency. “We’ve heard your news and want to support you at this exciting time” it said. “We must advise you strongly to get a second medical evaluation.” Their doctor had had a look at the medical reports and raised the concern that the circumference of the baby’s head was smaller than it “should” be, and since our declaration is for a child with no or minor health issues, this caused all sorts of infuriating cautionary conversations with Irish Agency. But yes, there was need for caution.

[I’m on the flight now. They keep interrupting this My Important Missive with commands to sit back, relax and enjoy the flight. I will be flying into my beloved NYC (hi Bionic!) and on to [nearish city].]

St Patrick’s Day happened. We had planned to go to Spike’s traditional family birthday lunch as prepared by his mother, the chef. (Always amazing. Always. [Now I’m hungry. Where’s my plastic inflight meal?]) but What With Everything, we spent the day trying to process the information and finding a paediatrician with appropriate expertise to give an assessment of the medical reports.
Some snapshots of the St Weirdrick’s Day of the traditional green velour hats, parades and adoption anxiety: the JB is searching on the internet for information about newborn head sizes, I’m compulsively cleaning behind the telly, something I’ve never had any interest in before, (my version of nesting, I presume; it got worse) but the mindless activity is comforting. All the cables must be detangled! I’m thinking about Baby’s birthmother. It’s so sad. I’m crying. Then, I’m not anymore, I’m staring at the shelves, having gone there for.. something, the line of a song from a musical going around my head, dementedly. The JB is going back and forth with information. We’re looking at flights. We’re hugging. I’m thinking about little babies in the NICU. The JB is reading emails from Agency Boss Lady. She is very positive! Too positive? We need another opinion and we set this up remotely with an expert in this area. (Email me if you ever need to know her name.) I’m talking to Irish social worker and she is nice, less annoying than the first. Also, she’s heard from the NICU doctor that he’s pleased with the baby’s progress. It’s all the smallest bit more real. We sleep heavily and then not at all, and then it’s the 18th, and we speak to World Expert on speaker phone. Her probable prognosis sounds perfectly manageable, in as much as any child’s future can be predicted. Our declaration covers those sorts of issues. I also got two other referrals for Irish doctors from my GPs (involves visits to those), but with the weekend it’s going to be hard to get hold of them. We’re looking at flights again. The JB is talking to his HR department, I’m wondering who to ask to mind the cat.

[Bleah, turbulence.]

All the while I am only half-believing this is happening. It’s hard to believe we won’t be cheated somehow. Won’t something go wrong? We tell the family at the weekend. They are delighted for us. My usually laconic brother gives advice about wobbly necks and car seats which seems Too Soon, and feels jinxy, but it’s his way of being excited for us. And yet maybe it will work out?

[Bleah, re-turbulence. I hope I’m not going to die in a fiery crash now? After All That? No. I refuse to.]

More good news from NICU. He’s gaining weight and his head has expanded - the JB read moulding happens after a vaginal birth. We confirm the match! We’re thrilled. Thrilled! And afraid. Afraid. We book the recommended hotel (sort of mini-apartment/hotel deal), the JB departs, on Tuesday. He’s to go to the hospital yesterday with the social worker. I wait uncomfortably for hours, telling myself it’s probably hard to send a message while holding a baby, and of course they are four hours behind (until the weekend when we spring forward). I look at baby books (I mean the basic info type, not the ones with the Reproving Ideas that bunny is not fond of. (I trust her.)) and decide that can wait till [city]. I clean the house madly, I make cat arrangements. I try to think of everything, which is tiring, but I am not tired, I am 78% adrenaline. JB sends me a text, blessed blessed man, with a photo of him and the Actual Baby, for whom I will think of a better pseudonym. They look lovely, perfect together. The JB has an expression of bamboozlement, fear and delight. Actual Baby is awfully, awfully sweet. The JB held him for three hours straight, until his arms hurt. That’s a kind man. And here I am, over Newfoundland, catching up with them, and now you are now caught up too.

More later, my dears. We are coming in to land, I hope, though the story is never over, is it.

xx T 

*(I am struggling with the decision how much to share of her and his story. Maybe I’ll put more details in a locked post.)



Oh my word. Have been following you for ages (am not creepy, truly!!) and am so, so happy...tearful even xxxxxxxx


Wow! That is the most amazing St. Patrick's Day story I've ever heard! Usually, the stories I hear involve green beer, so they're not hard to top, but still...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you! I hope the arrangements progress without delay or stress or any other issues! And I hope you'll post a picture...

And yes - have you never seen a pointy-headed newborn? I mean, all of my relatives of Irish descent have lovely, giant round heads, so I can see where you may have found this unusual. But, a friend of mine was of Scandanavian descent and her husband German, and their little boy had a tiny little head in the shape of a peanut. It was very strange to me - eventually it became more head-shaped.

Again, Congratulations! Welcome to parenthood!


Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow! Huge congratulations! I have chills down both arms for you while reading this.


Tears of happiness for you all. Immense sadness for birth mother but joy for the fact that she managed to find the most perfect and wonderful parents. Such excitement xxxx


Oh oh oh! I've been reading you for years and I'm so excited for you! What an adventure!


Thank you everyone! All going well at the moment. He's gaining weight. The JB and I are learning to care for him. He's awfully beautiful (in my humble opinion) - in the mysterious alien crossed with little old man way of newborns.

He's completely his unique and wonderful self.

More later. Just having a bite to eat.


Oh! Oh! OH OH OH! HOLY SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIT, Twangy! You are a MAMA! I leapt and sprang about like a very happy antelope, while tears of joy went flying off in all directions. I am so, so, so happy for you and the JB and Actual Baby. (Hurry with that psuedonym before AB sticks.) I am terribly sorry for Baby's Birthmother. My heart aches for her. But I like to think she knew just how wonderful you are, just how magical and nurturing and filled with exactly the love and the brilliance that this child needs, and that it eased her pain.

Oh Twangy, I remember when Figment was conceived, and when I dared to hope you would be holding an infant in a few short months. So much time has passed. I remember posting my positive pregnancy test, and since it was the middle of the night here, you saw it right away, were the first to see it, and were so happy for me. All that being happy for other people, and doing wonderful things, making wonderful art, and FINALLY, FINALLY, I WISH I COULD MAKE THIS FONT LARGER, we all get to be thrilled for you. There's nothing quite like seeing someone you love become a parent.

Valery Valentina

blub blub bwaa speechless here...
I will fasten my seat belt and not come over immediately. (But you know I want to)
Hope NICU time is over soon, I hear it is extra stressful.
I think that AB is a fine name for the son of JB.
I was born with a pear shaped head (if my mother is to be believed) My head is still small but mostly functions just fine!
Looking forward to your posts locked or not and wishing you the most marvellous of times. Capture what you can, this is such a dream.
Love and hugs


I finally get some good long uninterrupted internet access and... This?

*screams and jumps up and down and becomes quite doolally with excitement and does fifteen laps of the living room and startles both cats and parents*

There are not enough hugs in all the world but here is every single one I can muster in one big pile.

Babybabybabybaby Actual Baby oh my God babybabybabybaby hugs flusterment happy weeping.


This is my first time reading your blog. One of my daughters is adopted and I am crying as I read your post and feel all the feelings with you. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!! This is joyous news and I don't have to know you to know I am so, so happy for you.


This is fantastic news!! Congratulations!


Many huge congratulations to you and the JB!


Amazing news and sweet congratulations!

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