This is the final piece of a three-part series following Kendrick’s adoption story. We’ve fallen in love with her big heart and witty words. We know you will too. Read the first two sections of the series here: Part 1 A Single Career Woman’s Desire to Adopt and Part 2 This Single Mom’s Worst Nightmare: A Failed Adoption.
Oh my gosh! I’m writing this with one eye open and wishing that I’d taken a nap today when little Miss Bea was sleeping. That’s what they say, right? “Nap when baby naps.” So obviously you know what this means… I’m a mama now! And I couldn’t be happier to be sleep-deprived, charting poopy diapers, and mixing up bottles every three to four hours.
So I should probably catch you up on the most amazing 12 weeks of my life! That’s right, the most amazing time of my entire life involves poop, pee, and spit up.
I was matched with my baby’s birth mother 12 weeks ago, and my sweet, little Beatrice “Bea” arrived just six weeks later. This little girl is everything I dreamed of and so much more. It’s just so awesome how the Lord gives you exactly what you need when you need it. Bea is the most amazing gift I have ever received in my entire life. So many days I just stare at her and repeat over and over again, “Thank you, Lord. Thank you for choosing me to be her mother!”
The adoption is not finalized yet, but it should be in the coming months. I have to admit there is a still a little piece of me that holds my breath… Just waiting for the ink to dry on the final piece of paper. But I believe that if the Lord has brought us this far, He will continue to provide guidance as we finalize everything.
As I’m fumbling through this journey of motherhood, I’m learning that I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing most days, and I become more and more aware of my need for my Savior. Some days I cry. Some days I simply laugh so that I don’t cry, but every day I remain grateful for the experience.
It is funny though, that even in such a short amount of time as a new mother—I get a lot of questions. Maybe all moms get these questions, but maybe not? Maybe I get these questions because I’m a single mom who chose adoption as her Plan A. Who knows? But here are a few of my favorite questions…
Did you love her right away? (I think they mean: “…since you didn’t give birth to her?”)
I DID! I really DID! Does that seem so hard to believe? It’s really crazy because I went into this adoption obviously a little more guarded than last time. But once I held sweet Bea in my arms, it just felt right. All the circumstances with Bea’s birth mother were so different from my last experience. It’s because of her, and everything that she did for me prior to my arrival at the hospital, that my transition into motherhood and loving my girl at first sight was so easy. Only God… Only God would and could do that for me.
Has it set in that you’re a mom?
Oh YES! It’s like “mom brain” sets in immediately. You know when you can’t remember what you did yesterday, let alone 5 minutes ago or you can’t remember if you ate a meal today or where you parked the car. It’s like the doctor said, “Here’s your baby, and oh, by the way, you will never ever remember anything ever again starting… NOW!”
But really… Yes, I’m aware I’m Bea’s mother because of this overwhelming love that just happened. I don’t know when or how, it’s just like I woke up and was given the most amazing gift. My prayers were answered and it just feels right to be her mother. I honestly cannot remember what life was like before she arrived. Everything is brighter and clearer with her in it.
Some days I cry. Some days I simply laugh so that I don’t cry, but every day I remain grateful for the experience.
What’s the biggest surprise about (single) motherhood?
Well… I still only have 2 hands (that shouldn’t be a surprise, should it?). They don’t give you an extra set at the hospital when you are discharged because you are a single mom. So, I’m learning to multi-task like never before (and I thought I was pretty good at it before, but now I’m like a ninja).
Really though… Things are probably a little harder being a single mom. But honestly, I don’t have anything to compare it to, so to me, this is what my life as a mother looks like. Have I bitten off more that I can chew? Oh YES, but that’s why I have Jesus. Every day I’m crying out to Him to reveal Himself to me in the various situations. Asking Him to show me a way, asking Him to provide direction, asking Him, “What’s next?” And the best part of all is that He is faithful and He shows up every single time. Life is hard, and everything around me is changing, but my Jesus remains the same, and He is good ALL THE TIME. I love that the Lord keeps reminding me every day of my constant need for Him.
How can we help? (Insert: head tilt)
I love when people say, “just give us a call ANYTIME, we are happy to help…” In the past, I’m not so sure I would have believed it or accepted the help. Honestly, I think from being single for so long, you just get used to doing things on your own and not asking for help. But it’s been so overwhelming—all of the love and support I have received since returning home with Bea. People have offered to help, and well, I’ve let them… And I’ve been extremely grateful for:
- Every meal that showed up on my doorstep
- The friend who came over so that I could take a two-hour nap
- The friend who rode with me to the doctor’s office during my first mommy emergency
- The friend who offered to bring my baby to me when I had a break during Jury Duty
- The friend who sat with me and told me I’m not a failure as a mother because I didn’t document my baby’s first week of life with a milestone sticker
I’ve realized it’s ok to ask for help and that I’m not alone. There are others who have walked this road before me, and they are willing and able to help… So let them!
How will you manage as a single, working mother?
Well… Probably not like everyone else. I think I will be figuring out this parenting adventure as I go, and by depending heavily on my community. I have been abundantly blessed by a group of people that have come together to encourage, support, and love me through this season. I can’t confirm much about motherhood at this time, but I can confirm this… It does “take a village to raise a child,” and I’m extremely grateful for my village of friends and family that build me up, love me madly, and pray for me without ceasing. I’m excited to live my life and to raise my child with this village.
So obviously, my single girl life has changed immensely… But it’s totally worth it. The adventure isn’t over… It’s just different. I now have the amazing opportunity to watch Bea live her life and experience new things and places with her sweet, innocent curiosity. As I told Bea from the very beginning… The adventure starts today! Let’s go!
Loved this story? We think you’ll love this one too: I Never Wanted to Be a Pregnant Widow
We also recommend Plight of the Perfect Mama, Clichés to Cling to for Moms, Dear Single Mom, Motherhood: Redefining My Life, and 10 Tips for Soon-To-Be Moms