September 13, 2006

Once Upon A Time

I have had several requests to re-post to my blog the short story I wrote and posted in April of '06 to Keira's website. For those who were so kind to ask and persist...here you go...



Once Upon A Time...


Once upon a time, I was single and those were the good ole days. Whatever I wanted to do I did, and wherever I wanted to go I went. I took trips to the library, walks to the park, and spent quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for one was a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects were simple and necessity was the mother of my inventions. I killed the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and celebrated when I fixed the leak in my toilet. Yes, those were peaceful times. There was nothing to keep me up at night and no one to make demands on my time. Life was content and quiet. But maybe sometimes a little lonely…Suddenly, one hot August evening I met a man who would change all that for me. He smiled and I was sold and truth be told, he didn’t even know I was alive. Mistaken for the mother of one of his students, he assumed I was “taken”. Three short months later, we met for coffee and have never been apart since. Fate worked out the details on how we got to that point and there was never a better first date or first kiss. Love was in the air and I was smitten and swooning after being in his arms for ten minutes.Soon after, my beloved was on one knee in front of hundreds of people asking for my hand and I gladly said goodbye to my single life. After all, my life with him was so enriched and so much fuller than I ever thought it could be. The old saying goes like this “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes a baby in a baby carriage”…but fate had other plans for us.
The first couple years of wedded bliss passed by and never was a couple more in love than my darling and I. We set up house and even got a dog. Eventually we even got a second puppy. We took walks with our dogs, and delighted in their newly learned tricks. We would actually even surprise company with mini pet shows where we would proudly display the things our dogs had learned. Life was good and we were having fun learning to be a family.

Once upon a time we were young and newly married and those were the good ole days. Whatever we wanted to do we did, and wherever we wanted to go we went. We took trips to the library, walks to the park, and spent quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for two was always a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects were simple and necessity was the mother of our inventions. He killed the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and we celebrated when we fixed the leak in our toilet. Yes, these are peaceful times, we would say to each other. There was nothing to keep us up at night, except the sound of each other snoring, and no one to make demands on our time. Life was content and quiet. But still sometimes a little lonely…And soon the seeds of parenting, that were planted by having our little canine pals around, grew into full-blown desire. We thought about all the things we would do together as we happily plotted our blue-eyed blonde haired children. And so began the hopeful and na├»ve step into child conception. Several months passed and we watched as our friends around us conceived with seemingly little more than dinner and a movie. We laughed it off, shrugging our shoulders and silently hoping we were just out of sync. Several more months passed and still no glorious revelation of pregnancy. In fact, several pregnancy tests sat on the bathroom counter well into the night, in the slight hope that the second line would eventually decide to make it’s presence known. To no avail…
Summers came and went and we did yard work while neighbors happily passed by with strollers in tow – out for pleasant walks to the park. This only further served to encourage us to “get to work” on project baby. Still, weeks turned into months and months turned into three years of unsuccessful bargaining with God.Everywhere we looked, pregnant women glowing with love floated in and out of our paths, their proud husbands standing by to carry their coat and open their doors. Friend after friend called or wrote with news of impending childbirth, and we made calls of celebration, even though our own hopes were slowly fading out like a summer sunset. Family barbeques and dinners with old friends rendered the same question we had heard time and time again “when are you two going to start a family?” We finally had come up with witty answers like “oh, haven’t you met our four-legged kids…they were a pill to deliver?” or “we are a family…children are the addition to what already exists”. Needless to say, most of the time, we just smiled demurely and feigned ignorance. A simply shoulder shrug often did the trick and was quickly followed by a change of subject. Only those near and dear knew our true struggle. We were facing the beast of infertility - crappy, low-down, no-good friend that he is. Hope turned to rain. Dreams turned to darkness. One day we found ourselves talking about the future, the one without the children we so desperately wanted, and we consoled ourselves with this:Yes, once upon a time we would be old and long married and those would be the good ole days. Whatever we wanted to do we would do, and wherever we wanted to go we would go. We would take trips to the library, walks to the park, and spend quiet time at home planting flowers and watching old movies. Dining for two would always be a treat because there was never a fuss about what to eat or where to eat it. Projects together would be fun and simple and necessity would be the mother of our inventions. He would kill the spiders that crawled out from under my pantry and we would celebrate when we fixed the leak in our toilet. Yes, these would be peaceful times with no distractions or worries, like the ones kids would undoubtedly bring. There would be nothing to keep us up at night, except the sound of each other snoring, and no one to make demands on our time. Life would be content and quiet. But maybe sometimes a little lonely…


We moved across the country, bought a home and set up life – a life that didn’t include kids. We still wanted them, but we just couldn’t face the heartache of any more procedures, tests, or the negative results that went with them. We decided to make each other our focus and went forward with our plans to be a happily married couple. As fate would have it, that was not the only thing we were to plan on…


A year and a half later, a miracle happened. I became pregnant. Not the traditional kind of pregnancy that nature had ruled out for me in my mother’s womb, but the kind that entails lots of paperwork and lots of waiting. We call it paper-pregnancy. The kind that twists and turns and melts your tired wounded childless heart, and brings hope for tomorrow and the future. We had stumbled upon a wonderful opportunity to adopt a baby girl from China and door after door opened until there was no way to move but forward. Suddenly we were wrapped up in paperwork and details. Visits with a social worker, forms to fill out, fingerprints to take, and passport photos to pose for. One joyous day all that hard work had accumulated into one little box that traveled all the way to China and made it’s way into the hands of the Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs. Now we sit and wait for the pictures of the little one that will invariably change our lives forever. Even though it took months to get to this point, it seems like a dream. There is a nursery to sit in. One that I still walk into and feel as if I must be in someone else’s house. There is a crib and little tiny clothes. There are even little diapers that smell of baby powder all neatly stacked in a row. There are rattles and toys and squishy little chubby baby books. There are soft furry blankets, and warm thick cotton booties. There is a mobile that plays “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” and a baby doll that has soft black hair and beautiful Asian features. This is my daughter’s room, I tell myself. These are her clothes and her toys and this is her bed. It’s a bit much to take in, even now. And yet, I comfort myself with these thoughts while I wait for her to be in my arms:

Once upon a time we will be parents and long married and those will be the good ole days. Whatever we want to do we will check to make sure it’s kid-friendly and then do it, and wherever we want to go we will wonder if she will like it too. We will take trips to the library, walks to the park, and spend time at home playing with toys and watching Disney movies. Dining for three will always be a treat because there will never be a dull moment watching her jam daddy’s good eats into her little mouth. Projects together will be fun and messy and necessity will be the mother of our many inventions. She will probably pick up the spiders that crawl out from under my pantry and we will celebrate when she goes potty on the big-girl toilet. Yes, these will be glorious times with plenty of distractions and worries, like the ones having a child will undoubtedly bring. There will be nothing to keep us asleep at night, except the sound of her peaceful breathing, and only our lovely toddler to make demands on our time. Life will be content, yet blissfully chaotic. But never lonely…


-Christie

5 comments :

Robyn said...

AWESOME girl!!!! You know that could be Paul and my story too!! I am so happy to be traveling this road with you and can't wait for Keira and Avery to become good friends too!!

Love Ya!

Erin said...

I loved this the first time I read it. Now so many more people will see it! See you tomorrow, my friend!

Valerie said...

That is very moving, could Anton come over and kill the spiders in my pantry??? Gary gets squeemish.

Dawn and Dale said...

Wow! Today was my very first time ever to your blog and to read this story you wrote, was just amazing!!

Hope you have her in your arms very soon!!!

Doris & Dan Clark said...

That is lovely! Thanks for sharing it and reposting it.

Hello to a fellow 03/28 LID'er!

Keep smilin!