Norma Patricia ******* ********. This name might not mean much to you, but…..
She is our Guatemaltco’s BirthMother
When our Foster Mother was dropping Nathaniel off for the week w/ us, we spent about 4 hours together-first in the hotel restaurant, & then in the hotel lobby.
JUST AS AN ASIDE:
Ana & her granddaughter (Paula-age 5) spent most of that time playing together-in spite of the language difference. Picture Ana running around saying, “Ven aqui, Paula!” which basically means, “Come here, Paula!” This is about all the real communicating there was…..but they sure ran around looking very agenda oriented!! But…I digress….back to the real story.
A few times while we visited-(me in my broken Spanish & her in her broken English-her daughter trying to help -& Dave just kind of listening & following Ana & Paula around), her cell would ring. This is not un-usual, but there in Guate, cells are about the only reliable phone service, so people are CONSTANLY on the phone.
Once, the phone rang, & I noticed a difference in Mama Anna’s tone. She started to get a bit emotional, turned to me & said, “Es Norma. Es la mama de los ninos.” If you don’t know Spanish, she was telling me that is was the babies Birthmother!!!
Wow! I literally was glad I wasn’t standing up!! I felt myself go weak. It took me a bit to even be able to figure out words to tell Dave what was going on.
Then….(I have to insert here-I’m so glad I can understand Spanish)…I heard her start to talk about how she was sad that Norma couldn’t be there w/ us to see the LOVE Ruth has had showered on her this past year. (Our children’s Birth Mother was in a terrible car accident right before Natty was born & is still on crutches & un-able to get around easily-almost 4 mo. later-thus she couldn’t be there). I HAD NO IDEA her coming had even been a possibility.
She told her that Ruth & Ana were beautiful & delightful.
She told me that Norma wanted to communicate how THANKFUL she was to us for taking two of her children. Many times, Mama Anna repeated this to us.
I was SO frustrated. All I could say, through Mama Anna & through my choking up throat was please tell her, “Gracias, tambien. Tus ninos son un regalo de Dios para nuestra familia!” In English-“Thank-you. Your children are a gift from God for our family.”
So much more to say to each other…….but no words really in English or Spanish. How do I tell her what a blessing Ruth has been, & I know Nathaniel will be? Ruth, whose name means “satisfaction” has helped heal hearts torn apart w/ grief over our child who we never saw open her eyes. Oh, my…tearing up!!!
We two mothers are forever united…..her because she loved enough to let go
And me….because God led us to each other & blessed our family w/ her offspring.
Some of you may ask:
Did that contact bother you?
No!!!! Not at all! Actually, Dave & I always wondered what we would do-search for birth family for them, maintain contact, or just leave it the way it has been….knowing very little about their Birth Family.
But, we realized, when presented w/ the opportunity, we were actually disappointed she didn’t come. Just to be able to tell her in person, “Thank-you!” Watch her reactions to seeing Ruth toddling around trying to keep up w/ Ana. Hug her myself , most likely cry together…..her for what she is missing & me for the JOY she has brought to my life!!! Tears of happiness & sadness, mingled together.
Are you threatened by her contact?
Again, a resounding NO!!!
She has already placed one child before making an adoption plan for Ruth. I KNOW she KNOWS what she’s doing….out of love, choosing a better life for her children.
Guatemalans who choose this route for their children are very strong people. She knows that once she makes this decision, (& signs off on it the required 4 times throughout the adoption process) she will most likely NEVER see them or have contact w/ them again. Imagine the pain of that decision. But, she’s done it twice now, & Nathaniel will be the third time.
How could I have been anything but thrilled for her if she gets to see for her own eyes that her babies are loved & provided for?
Also, along w/ that…..I know my children will always know who their “real” parents are. She is “connected” to them forever, but we are the ones that will teach them to walk, rock them when they cry, feed them, listen to their first words, teach them about our Savior, Jesus Christ, & watch all those milestones. Just like we have done w/ Ana Eventually,….we hope to raise adults that love & honor the Lord Jesus & have a close relationship w/ us & their siblings. . That is what makes a family…..not blood. But love….1 Cor. 13! “The greatest of these is love.” (By the way….I do not mean to minimize her part in this at all-w/ out her…..we would still just be a family of three-& we would never have had the blessing of hearts enter-twined as they now are.)
Reminded me again that children are just a blessing from the Lord, on loan to us for a short time. God drew the two of us together-a woman from Colorado Springs & a brave woman from Guatemala, raising 3 children in absolute poverty. In the short 5 min. or so she was on the phone, I was CHANGED FOREVER!!! I HAD been going through this adoption process w/out much thought for her (mostly bec., I haven’t had TIME to just sit & contemplate it!!!!!). But….no longer. Now, I see the world more through her eyes, & am forever grateful she made the decision she has made.
Am I sorry we didn’t meet?
YES!!! But,…..like so many other times in this adoption process, I am trusting that God has His hands on us, & KNEW what would be right for that day, & those circumstances.
Praying that if we don’t meet here on earth, one day I can thank her in heaven…..when we will all speak the same language, & in that PERFECT environment, I WILL have the words to say.
It’s not enough…..but “Thank –you, Norma!” y “Muchas gracias!” I am SO BLESSED by your presence in my life!
ETA: Just wondering.....what would you have done? Anything different? I would really like some advice here...the whole experience was so unexpected.....