One phone call changed it all on 5/30/19. It was around 7ish in the morning and I was just about to take Kevin to the train. My phone rang and our social worker’s name flashed across the screen. In the realm of adoption, or at least with our social workers, phone calls were reserved for either really good news or really bad news.
After nearly 3 years of seemingly only bad news phones calls in our life, I knew it in my bones when I saw her name that this was the call that would change everything. This was finally going to be our very, very good news.
Sure enough, our birthmom was in labor and I was instructed to get to the hospital as quickly as I could. On one of the first phone calls we had about our match, the social worker told us that she’d want me to be in the delivery room with her. I kept my cool on the call, only to hang up and instantly burst into tears. It was my first sign that this was meant to be. One thing I took so hard after losing Hallie and our ability to have future biological children was that Kevin and I would never get to share that moment in the delivery room. That one still cuts hard today. While going through the adoption process, I knew it was far out of the ordinary to be included in that but I prayed for it over and over again. And there I was that morning, rushing to the hospital to be part of our son’s birth.
Kelly William was born at 12:59pm, weighing 5lb 11oz. I watched as he took his first breaths and as he mustered together his tiny first cries. I watched as his birthmom, through her own tears, asked me to step in and cut his umbilical chord. As Kelly was held by his birthmom and then placed in my arms, an indescribable moment was born of two stories marked with such love, loss, grief, gratitude, sacrifice and superhuman courage colliding hard between us, all for the pure love of this child.
I of course texted Kevin as fast as I could. I sent him a picture with, “OUR SON is here!!!!!”
Kelly was a name that we loved for a boy when we were initially pregnant with Hallie and before we knew she was a girl. We loved the ring of it and that it was an Irish name because of course our kid was going to have red hair. We only found out during this match that Kelly means “warrior,” and well, how perfect is that? William was picked in honor of our birthmom’s Grandpa who had a very significant role in her life. Right before she delivered Kelly, she asked if we had a name picked out and I’ll never forget her reaction when I told her. His name became a perfect representation of his special story.
Because Kevin and I weren’t going to get that moment in the delivery room that we had wanted in life, I quickly became fixated on what would be our new moment. That moment turned out to be when I’d get to introduce Kelly to his Dad and place him in those strong, protective forever arms of his. One of the very reasons we were picked was because of how hands on Kevin is in life, how much he likes to do and build and play. A big kid, some would say. A lot would say actually. And that moment was everything. Everything. Yeah it wasn’t how it was supposed to be but what a life lesson that hit hard for us. When you let go of, “supposed to be,” and instead embrace what you have, you get the moment we got instead. The magical moment marked with so much love, such happiness and so much redemption. The moment we became a family of four. The moment all of Kevin’s dreams of playing catch, punting footballs and fishing with his son became a reality. The moment I became a #boymom!
We spent that entire day and night at the hospital, in awe of this perfect little human. We didn’t put him down, we took a billion pictures and made the most of the subpar at best hospital cafeteria. Because of the nature of the adoption process, we couldn’t post anything for awhile after his birth so y’all, we have pictures for days from the vault! Guilty of finally being that Mom that says, “isn’t he the cutest?!”
Boy does this story have so much more to it but for today, this first birthday of Kelly’s, what joy do I find in remembering how that day changed our life forever! This year has been better that I could’ve ever dreamed, hoped or prayed for. And that was before Kelly started growing red hair. He is living, breathing proof that miracles happen.
He is also wildly hilarious, crazy and fearless, cuddly and curious. He is entertaining for days and loves life like I never knew a one year old could. He has challenged us in ways we never knew possible but boy, is it all so, so beautiful.
We promised his birthmom that we would love him hard and baby boy, do we ever, forever! One year down, a million to go. Happy first birthday Kelly William! We love you MOST!