The fact that it has been a month since my last post is evidence that time is passing... though it feels very slow. I have been receiving small pieces of news about Mareshet from traveling parents, and sometimes pictures. April 7th is looming ahead of me and yet I feel like my feet are in quicksand. Having always been one to plan at least six months in advance, I can no longer see past April 7th. I am as prepared as one can be for the disappointment of not passing court on the first try. Yet I cannot see past this.
I have really tried to focus on my last months as a parent to just N. Never again will I have only one daughter, an only child, the apple of my eye! I am reminded of those few sweet weeks I spent with her as a newborn, before returning to work, the sweat dripping down my back in the July heat, nursing in the rocking chair. I knew those moments would never return, so I drank them in like honey. I know these moments are the same, the last when she will have my attention undivided. Yet despite all this concentration, a piece of me goes living and breathing in Ethiopia. I sold my soul long ago to have two children, and regardless of what happens now, the act is done. I am a mother of two daughters. I feel for Mareshet and fret over her and imagine touching her forehead with my cheek. I don't know this child and I don't know how I'll adapt to life with her and yet I feel like she is walking around with my heart in her hands every day. There is divine intervention at play, as surely as gravity. And I have heard that the same pull of the tides upon the ocean is the pull, however subtle, upon our blood. We have spent our brief lives heading toward one another as if by gentle traction. As one adoptive mother put it, "It turns out that he was the right child and I was the right parent." I do not know where the meeting place will be or when, but it will be as if the intersection of our paths was always a certainty, shining in the distance like a star.
My best news and reassurance came the other week when a parent emailed our group and said "I have a picture of Mareshet, will her family please connect with me." This was a woman I had not contacted before her trip to beg for a photo, a foot tracing, or to carry a letter. This was a mother that Mareshet had ostensibly approached while she was there to pick up her own child, in the hope of communicating with me. I felt my heart lift and fly around the room. There is someone on the other end of the tread, tugging back. Mareshet found a way to tell me so.
These days before Mareshet arrives I think about children to come. Are there others? Will I ever again feel the sparrow kick from within that announces "Somebody is here"? Or will I have the privilege of taking up another mother's child, when her arms no longer hold and comfort? I know that the answers are not for me to know right now, but I cannot help asking... Mareshet is proof that I am responding to a call. Hers? Mine? Allah's? No matter. If there is a call and a response, I take this as evidence that universe may more in store for me yet. I wait in anticipation, though my imagination does not reach that far. It does not go beyond April 7th.