Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Whole Story. Part 4

On October 26th, I am pretty sure I cried all day long. I wanted to have this baby more than anything.

Why wasn't she coming?
Why was she taking so long?

That night, while I was laying next to my mom and complaining, (this had been a regular occurrence lately) She got up and said "I'm hungry. Let's go to Mcdonalds" I looked at her, confused. "Okay..."
she then told me to put on some tennis shoes because we were walking there.

Normally I would have been against this little idea, but I knew that it would have to do SOMETHING for me to walk that far. It was at least 3 miles away.

We walked all the way, my mom was so patient with me. I complained about my situation the whole way there and cried. She simply just listened and talked to me about it.

That day, I came to the conclusion that my mom is truly my best friend. No one else would have put up with me like she was.

When we got to McDonalds I had blisters on my feet. My mom called my dad & had him pick us up so that we didn't have to have to walk all the way home.

The next day, Dustin Andrea and I decided to meet for dinner and then go to my house afterwards to play games. We did this every week. For dinner, we decided to go to the little Chinese restaurant by my house.

While we were eating I had my first real contraction.

I wasn't sure if I should get excited or not because I had been getting contractions for weeks and nothing was happening.

On the way back to my house I had another one. These contractions were all a lot more intense. When we arrived at my house, we started setting up the game. This was when I started having them close to 5 minutes apart.

My mom kept saying that I was faking it. I began trying to convince her that I really was having them. "you told me earlier today that you were going to fake it." she said.

That was true. But I wasn't faking it.

My Dad on the other hand said he believed I was going to have her by the next day. My mom decided that we would go for a walk in the park, and if I was still having them we would go to the hospital.

Dustin and Andrea pulled out their camera and started taking pictures. They didn't want to miss anything if this was for real.

We walked to the park and back. Sure enough, I was still having them. The feeling that surrounded us was so intense. You could feel every one's excitement, and anxiety.

When we finally decided to go to the hospital, Dustin and Andrea followed behind us all the way there. At one point they called and asked if we thought this was really it.

When we arrived, the nurse checked me and announced that I was dilated to a 1 and 70% effaced. I was SO HAPPY. Even though it was only a 1, at least it was something! She then proceeded to tell me that if it's not a three, they have to get permission from the Doctor to keep me there.

We were so anxious. I was praying that they would admit me. It was 11:00 pm, so they had to ask the doctor working the graves that night.

When he finally came in,
he said that because I hadn't been thinned at all at my last appointment,
he would admit me and start me on medicine to speed up the process.

I looked over at Dustin and Andrea. I couldn't help but feel excited for them. They were grinning. I couldn't believe that it was finally here!

The Doctor proceeded to tell Dustin and Andrea that it would be a while until I had the baby, and recommended that they go home and get a good nights rest, because it would probably be their last. They gave me a hug, wished me luck, and left.

That night was painful. The medicine they gave me was definitely making my contractions extremely painful. I couldn't sleep. My mom was there with me sleeping on the little bench by the window. I tried really hard to be quiet because I knew that she needed her sleep, but I was in pain. I cried a lot. I wanted the epidural, but every time the nurse would come in and check me, she would say that nothing had changed. I had to be dilated to a 3 in order to receive an epidural.

at around 7 am, they checked me again and told me that I was dilated to a 3 and that my doctor would be there in an hour. what?? no I wanted the epidural NOW.

They explained that before I received my epidural, my Dr. had to check me and approve.

It was the longest hour of my life.

Once he came he checked me, and confirmed that I could proceed with the epidural. Within minutes the anesthesiologist was in my room.

The second the pain was gone, I wanted to hug him.
I thanked him, and fell right to sleep.

I was in and out of consciousness the whole day. I was so tired, but Dustin and Andrea were there, and so was my family. I didn't want to just sleep. At 2 pm, the nurse came in and checked me. She told me that I was dilated to a 9!
I was so excited!

She then checked to make sure Avery was facing the right direction.
She wasn't. She was facing up instead of down.

The nurse got my doctor and for the next few hours they worked on turning her around. They thought they had gotten her turned, and by about 5:00, the doctor came in and she had flipped back around completely. Finally he just turned her really quickly, and then left to go help perform a c-section.
About a minute later, he came running back into my room and said "Her heart rate is dropping, it's baby time."

I wanted Dustin and Andrea there to see their daughter born. They stood up by my head and watched as Avery was born. It was the most spiritual experience I have ever had in my life.

It all happened so fast.

I remember looking over at Dustin and Andrea as they walked in. Within minutes Dr. Terry held up a beautiful baby girl, and she started crying.

Avery Leigh.

born at 5:17 pm, on October 28th 2008.

I sat in awe and stared at her. She had ten fingers. Ten toes. She had 2 arms and 2 legs. What a miracle she was.

They then laid Avery on my chest. I held on to her. I couldn't stop crying, or staring at her. Dustin and Andrea cut the chord and the nurse wrapped her in a blanket. I immediately pulled her to my chest. I couldn't stop staring at her. Her beautiful eyes.

I didn't ever want let her go.

I looked up for the first time since she was born. Dustin and Andrea were standing there with tear stained faces just staring at her. I looked at my mom. She was crying.

I asked Andrea if she wanted to hold her. "no, you can hold her." she said. I could tell she was just aching to hold her daughter. I looked down at my beautiful Angel again, and then gave her to Andrea. "You can hold her."

Watching Andrea gently take her from my arms and hold her for the first time was amazing. I will forever remember that moment. She was so in love with this little Angel. This was her daughter.

Andrea and Avery both just stared at each other the whole time. The spirit was so strong. We all just sat and watched this tender moment.

The next person to hold her was Dustin. If anyone has ever seen a new father hold his little girl for the very first time, you can comprehend maybe a little as to how touching this was. What an amazing father Dustin was. They stared into each others eyes forever. Avery knew this was her dad.

They placed her back in my arms after this, and I just stared at her again. She was beautiful.

The next day, exactly 24 hours after Avery was born, I signed relinquishment papers. Normally you do this when you are placing her, but because of issues with the birth father, I didn't want to risk anything. I signed them as soon as possible.

This was the hard part. Listening to every word they would read, and signing all of those papers killed me. I held Avery in my arms while I did this. I never wanted to let her go. They read every word out loud. They said things like,

"After signing these papers you will no longer have any rights to this child."


"Signing these papers indicate that you will no longer be her mother."

"This takes every right you have to this baby away"


"All your rights will be terminated. Relinquished."

It was like they were looking for every word they could possibly think of that would rip my heart out. It killed me. At the very end, they asked me to explain why I was doing this. are you serious? I thought. "Is that really necessary?" my dad asked. They explained that it was because I had to show that I was not being coerced into doing this.

I was crying, bawling. I could hardly talk and they wanted me to explain to them why I was doing this!? All I could say was, "Because I love her. and I want her to have a mom and a dad that love each other." I hugged her tighter.

Once that was over I took a deep breath. Considering the situation, I could not believe how calm I felt. I knew what I was doing, but it was okay. I knew without a doubt that this was the right thing. I didn't have any second thoughts. Not at all. I couldn't believe it

The next day I had all to myself. I asked that I have no visitors. I wanted to spend time with her. Just me and Avery. I wanted to hold her and be her mom for one day. I can honestly tell you that I hardly slept the entire time I was at the hospital. I probably had about 3 hours of sleep all together. I didn't WANT to sleep.

I wanted to look at her.

Play with her.

Sing to her.

Hug her.

Hold her.

Feed her.

I didn't have time to sleep. I could hardly tell that I was even tired.

On October 30th, 2008 at 5:00 pm Dustin and Andrea Arrived to pick up their baby girl.

I felt at peace with all of it. I was so calm. There were tears, throughout my entire hospital stay, yes. But when it came the time for me to give her to them, I was okay. I was at peace. The spirit was strong. I felt Angels surrounding all of us.

Watching her mom and dad hold her the day we left was even more comforting.

They loved her so much. I Knew she was in the best hands, and would be loved unconditionally, just like I had hoped for.

About an hour after they arrived, I gave Avery another big kiss and huge hug, and placed her in Andrea's arms.

Andrea put her in her car seat. I stood up gave both her a Dustin a huge long hug, and sat in the wheelchair outside my door.

On the car ride home, I cried. I cried for days. But I never second guessed my decision. From the moment I met Dustin and Andrea I knew she was theirs. From the moment she was born, I knew she was theirs. I love Avery more than I thought I could ever love someone. She is my little Angel. She has truly changed my life for the better.

These things that have happened to me are pieces of me. They have made me who I am today.

I am truly blessed to have met such amazing people. I am so happy to have found the perfect couple for Avery. I am so happy that through adoption, I have a relationship that will last forever

Dustin and Andrea are not just friends. They are like family.

I am so grateful to them for being so willing to have an open adoption with me.

It's so wonderful to always know how Avery is doing. It's so great that I can watch her grow up. She is truly my Angel sent from heaven, and the most loved and spoiled little girl I know.

Wanna know our story from her parents point of view click HERE?
wanna see how big she is getting?
Click HERE!
To see the video made for them Click HERE


Our Happy Family said...

Wow, what a beautiful story. I don't even know you and yet each part of the story I cried. It brought back all the emotions we had during our daughters adoption. Thank you again for sharing your story.
Like I have said before as an adoptive parent I am so thankful to birth parents like our daughter and you out there. I am so thankful for adoption and especially for open adoption. It has brought us a whole new part of a family now.

Dustin and Andrea said...

It was beautiful. Thank you again Andee for telling the story from your point of view. Avery is a lucky girl to have you as her birth mom. We couldn't be more blessed to have gone through this experience with you.

Anonymous said...

I just finished reading your entire story. It was amazing! You are amazing! I'm in awe of your maturity and strength. I hope you are blessed throughout your life for being able to do something that was so difficult. I'm glad you got the peace that you were doing the right thing. Thanks for sharing your story. It was beautifully written.

Frankman's said...

Hi, I'm Andrea's cousin. I just wanted to say how amazing I think you are! I bawled through your whole story. You are so strong!

Alexis said...

Wow. Andee you are one special person. Thank you Thank you Thank you. I don't know one single person who couldn't learn something AMAZING from this story. Such an act of love, selfishness and FAITH. I wish you the very, very, very, best! you are so strong.

Jamie said...

My eyes are so teary I can hardly see! Thank you for sharing your story. Thank you for allowing others to witness the miracle you witnessed and for allowing us to feel just an inkling of the spirit that you have felt and for strengthening our testimonies. I love you so much and am so grateful to have you in my life, to have you to look up to!

Ashley said...

You're a darling. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Avery will be so proud of you when she is old enough to understand.

Thank you so much. May you be blessed in all you do. Your example of love is one that eludes so many.

What an amazing person you are.

Again, thank you.

DAN, LISSA, & CAM said...

Wow! That was an incredible story, I'm so glad you wrote it down. You have changed so many lives by being the courageous person you are. I sure love ya!

Carrie said...

Hi Andee.
I am good friends with Dustin and Andrea, so I've been following your story for quite a while. I'll never forget the night Andrea called to tell me that they had been selected by you. I was over the moon with joy for them. Andrea was so cute and so excited.
I'm also an adoptive mother so I have to tell you how much I appreciate you sharing your story- difficult as it may be. I just want you to know how amazing you are and how much I love you for helping Andrea and Dustin become the people that Heavenly Father wanted them to be. I want you to know that your role in their family is sacred. You- with the help of a very loving Heavenly Father, created a family. That is amazing and beautiful and so sacred. You had the spiritual maturity to follow what God wanted to have happen for EVERYONE involved. You are wonderful and I pray that your life will be happy and blessed for the sacrifices you made for sweet Avery. She is one lucky girl!
Thanks again for your strength, courage. I know that you sharing your story will most definitely help someone, somewhere, sometime.
Much love and admiration,

fivewalkers said...

Andee, this was beautifully written. Very emotional. We love you so much.

hijodi said...

Hi Andee, I, too, am good friends of Dustin and Andrea, and even met you once at one of his basketball games last summer. Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your story with all of us. It was very beautiful and extremely touching to me. You are such an amazing person!!

all the best,
Jodi Nelson

Adam and Andrea Daveline said...

Andee, thank you for sharing that with the world. You have made one of the hardest sacrifices ever. Absolute selfless love. I know your story will help many others out there. We LOVE YOU!!!

Kim said...

Andee, I have loved reading your story. Thank you so much for sharing it with the world, it is powerful. I am in tears. Avery is the most beautiful little girl ever. (Not surprising looking at her birth mother!)

mrs. r said...


LaNelle Simons said...

I found your blog randomly through Mrs. R (who I totally don't know but feel like I do because I am addicted to her I sound like a blog stalker!) Anyway, I just have to tell you that I read your entire story from beginning to end and bawled basically the entire time. And I usually read random blogs and don't comment, but something about your strength and how beautifully you said everything made me want to say thank you! And you were 100% wrong when you said in your first post that you are not a good are amazing!

AJ and Marian said...

You have an amazing story, and thank you for sharing it. If you don't mind I would like to send a link of your blog to my birth mother. I think she would love to read your story. Your story has so many details, and I enjoyed reading it. Thank you again!

Anonymous said...

As Dustin's parents, we feel overwhelming gratitude for your selfless act. "The Errand of Angels is Given to Women" . . . this was a seemingly insurmountable errand, but you lovingly completed it---you are our angel, Andee. Over the past few years, our hearts ached for Dustin and Andrea as they yearned for children. There were prayers and tears and prayers and tears...and then because of you and a loving Father in Heaven, they experienced something greater and more wonderful than they ever imagined. Through this, they have been blessed with their precious daughter, Avery, and just as importantly, they have been blessed with YOU. Thank you for inviting them into your life.

Mary (MEM) said...

Andee- Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your story! I cannot even express in words how much I admire you and the love you have for Avery. Without wonderful birthmothers like you my husband and I (who have adopted and are in the process again) wouldn't have the opportunity to be parents. You are amazing and I hope that other birthmothers out there can find strength and support from your experiences.

Okay, here's the interesting thing: Last summer I attended FSA's National Adoption Conference. One day at one of the lunch breaks I sat down at a table with other adoptive couples. We all started talking and sharing our infertility and adoption experiences with each other- specifically about how the right baby goes to the right home. I remember one of the couples at that table were really cute and SO EXCITED because an AWESOME BIRTHMOM had chosen them just weeks after their Home Study had been approved and they were expecting a baby girl. They had nothing but praises to say about their baby’s birth mom and they were happy that she wanted them to come to the ultrasounds and Dr’s appointments with her. Well, as I started to read your story and came to the pictures of Dustin & Andrea I thought “They look kind of familiar.” So I peeked at their blog & noticed that they had a link about “24” and I remember them saying how they were huge 24 fans and so was their baby’s birth mom. (They also recommended reading “the r house”). The excited couple that I sat next to that day was Dustin & Andrea! How lucky they and Avery are to have you in their life.

I hope you are ABUNDANTLY BLESSED in your life!

Crockett Adventures said...

Although I do not know you I am in awe of your strength and your testimony that you have shared. I know multiple people that are looking to adopt or have already adopted and it is wonderful people like you who make their dream a possibility. I cried through the whole story and it touched my heart to know what you have gone through. Thank you for sharing such a personal story for the benefit of others. It has changed my life as I know it will change other's also. I also live in Logan so maybe we will bump i nto each other sometime! Good luck in all you do. What a great example you are! Avery is a very lucky and very loved little girl to have all of these people that love her! She will thank you one day. Dustin and Andrea look like darling parents.

Kristin said...

Thanks for sharing your beautiful story. I'm an adoptive mom and am so grateful for Baylie's birthmom. I think about her all the time. She wanted a closed adoption, but I still wonder about how she's doing and I'm always so grateful to her for sharing her daughter with us. I love my little girl so much and can't imagine my life without her. Thanks again for your thoughts and feelings. You're a wonderful girl.

Rachelle said...

well i think that is one of the most amazing things i've ever heard. i have no words other than thank you for sharing that experience. i am so thankful for birth mothers like you. best to you always, Rachelle

Anonymous said...

I was priviledged to be with you again yesterday afternoon and see your goodness and strength.
I was happy to see you in the waiting room and get to know your mother. You are both wonderful women and I will always hold you in a special place in my heart for the gift you presented to Dustin and Andrea.
Know that you will always be in my prayers and have love and respect for you.
I have a hard time expressing my thoughts as I would like to, but remember that I love you.
Avery's Greatgrand mother.

birthMOM said...

i havent read parts one thru three yet, but part 4 was beautiful! so much of what you shared is how i too felt during the hospital stay and at placement, the overwhelming sense of calm and peace, the overwhelming knowledge that this was what was meant to be, the beauty of seeing the adoptive parents meet and love THEIR baby!! I too have never doubted my decision!

Avery is so darling! you go girl! you done good! Isn't it awesome being a birthmom!?

Stefanie Jinelle said...

Wow, when you got the end of the placement story I was BAWLING. It kind of hits home, I'm having a girl, you had a girl. You're adoptive dad's name is Dustin, mine's name is Dustinn. It's truly amazing to watch how placement and adoption touches lives. I think the papers part is what hit me the most and how they asked you why. I wouldn't be able to handle it. I'm excited for to place my daughter Olivia with Dustinn and Val but I know that I have my days. I have my days now. But congrats :]Avery is beautiful!

Mrs. Black said...

Thank you for sharing your story and your strength. You are a testament to the world that miracles really do happen and that the Lord answers our prayers through each other. My husband and I are in our home study process and we are currently working on our birthparent letter. It has been a challenge for us because words cannot describe all of the love we feel for this woman and baby we've never met. Your story has really given me so perspective today. You will one day be a fabulous social worker because of this perspective. God Bless you Andee, and thanks again!

swimmingviolist said...

Hi Andee!! I am not pregnant. And I know you don't know me! My name is Natasha Robinson. Thank you so much for sharing your story! I had chills up and down my spine through out the whole story! :D I have done a mistake too... and to tell you the truth, I haven't felt so comforted to know that I am not pregnant! And being friends with Stefanie for about ten years, she has helped me in everyway! And I know that if I did fall into the same situation you were in and what Stef is going through. I'd probably would be in the same position. And I can tell you right now I am grateful! Thank you so much for sharing your adoption story! Looking at your pictures I feel like I know you, but I don't! When I started reading your story, it sounded just like my situation except different. I was freaking out and nervous that I could be pregnant, I decided that since I was so close to when my cycle was starting, I decided to wait till around that time... I felt so horrible! And I am still with this person, and he is the most amazing person ever! We have been able to stick through this time of trial! I Look up to you for making your decision to place your Beautiful Daughter in adoption! She looks so beautiful! And you are one beautiful Girl!! :D Going to School and becoming someone to help those that will be choosing adoption in the future! Talk about amazing strength! I hope the best for you to what ever comes your way in your life!! :D I Love you a ton! (I know that sounds weird even though I don't know you, and haven't really met you! But it is so true!). Watching one of my really good friends change in a blink of an eye(pretty much), to complete happiness, joy peace, Love, Charity, etc. I Look up to her and I look up to you! Even though I can't even come close to even relating to your story. Because of the fact that I didn't become pregnant. Other wise my situation would be totally different right now. I am really truly grateful that I found your blog through Stefanie! You are one true amazing person! I hope you know that!

-Natasha Robinson

@manda said...

You are amazing! Amazing doesnt even cover the just of it!
I am so proud of you and so evious of your courage and faith!
I am seriously sitting here sobbing while reading your beautiful story! lol
You are such a strong woman!

Mandy Jo said...

You are such an awesome person! I am an adoptive mother of a wonderful 5 year old lil girl and as I was reading lil Avery;s story I started crying and she asked me why and I told her you know you have a special birthmom she said yes I said so does this lil girl and showed her a pic of your lil girl:) Thanks for sahring your story:)

Anonymous said...

Just wanted you to know that I never get emotional about things, but this is such a beautiful story! I can't believe how mature you are! You are one of my hero's!

Matt and LeMira said...

Thank you for having the courage to share your story. I am a hopeful adoptive mom, and I'm learning so much. I can tell that this was and is a very spiritual journey for you as I could feel the spirit with each sentence. May the Lord bless you.



The Millers said...

Great story! Sometimes I wished I had made the decision to place earlier because then I would have been able to involve my adoptive couple more, but all in all as I read your story it brought back things I had forgotten about mine (mine was 7 years ago, mind you) and it made me want to write down everything I remember. Thanks for sharing again, although I am a birthmom I still was touched by this story, I am amazed at how many wonderful women can do what I did. sti

Anonymous said...

Great post!

Wendy said...

What a beautiful story. It is truly inspirational. You are all amazing people. Thank you so much for sharing!

Krista Eger said...

Holy crap Andee!!!! You have got to be the most amazing person I have ever met in my entire life! I cried through the entire thing and kept reading parts to my husband (while crying). You seriously inspire me to be a better mom! What a lucky little girl!!! The spirit was so strong when I was reading that! The part where you said there was a comforting feeling that you couldn't explain, it feels a lot like hearing my husband's conversion story! He prayed about the book of mormon and had this wave of comfort fall over his body. What a cool feeling that must be! I just cannot stress enough how much of an inspiration you are to me! I am SOOOOO GLAD that I got to meet you!

birthmothertalks said...

You are really amazing. Thanks for sharing your story. I know it's not easy opening up to all to read. You are so blessed to be living in times of open adoption.

Misty C said...

Hi my 15 yr old daughter placed her baby on May 5,2011. It has been the hardest trial I have ever expierenced.. I found your story and had my daughter read it because she is having such a hard time lets face it we all are. Your story helped us more than you could know.. We understood every word of your pain that you went through in and out of the hospital.. We spent 2 days with our little angel before she was gone the hardest time in my life and I know my daughters I watch her cry all the time and I feel so helpless.. What you and my daughter and every other person that places for adoption has done is truly the strongest act of love and selflessness anyone could ever show.. I still hear the baby cry and look for her forgetting she is gone sometimes I'm hoping that some kind of normal life comes back soon.. You are truly something possitive for my daughter to look up to showing where yor life is now.. Thank you so much for sharing your story.. I really can't put into words all I'm trying to say there is just to many feelings.. But thank you...

sheila said...

Hi I just got done reading your blog. I am glad I read it. It really helped to read it knowing im not the only who went threw this. It kinda helped me to heal so thank you.