Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Bringing Benson Home

Even though the papers were signed on Sunday, we didn't actually get to take Benson "home" until Monday, January 9th.  He was in the NICU for observation after his apnea episodes.  The night of the 8th he was moved down to the transitional NICU, which was a step closer to going home.  Benson had been doing great but they just wanted to observe him.  He also had to pass the "car-seat test".  He had to sit in his seat for 45 minutes while hooked up to the machines to make sure that he didn't have any more breathing problems.  He passed with flying colors.   We enjoyed our last day in the hospital with him.  We had spent a lot of time there and were looking forward to getting home.  I think we were a little nervous too.  It was great to know that there were nurses and doctors taking care of him.  It was also nice to be able to sleep through the night even though we had a baby (at that time I don't think I knew how nice it was, lol).  But, mostly we were just really excited to leave.  I think Ben especially still didn't feel like he was ours until we were driving away from that hospital with him in our car.  The caseworker did have to come up and bring some papers in order for us to be released.  It was about 3pm when we finally left.  We got Benson dressed in his going home outfit, took a bunch more pictures and were on our way.

Car seat test

Going home outfit, so cute

Mommy is completely in love (still totally surreal to say mommy)

proud papa

We are a happy family :)

Such a great nurse.  We found out after spending the day with her that she was LDS.  Kind of crazy!

First ride in the car seat

Walking out of the hospital.  They make you keep the baby in the bed.  I thought that was kind of funny.

SO HAPPY to finally be leaving with our little man!

 As we were driving away from the hospital I sat in the back looking at the beautiful baby boy sitting next to me and feeling like I was in a dream.  Ben turned on "A Thousand Years" by Christina Perri and I sang it to my boy with tears streaming down my face.  It was a moment I will never forget.  (As a side note, Benson loves that song.  We play it and I sing along in the car when he is sad and it calms him down.  It is so sweet)

On the way home we stopped to see Benson's birth-mom and her little sisters and mom.  The little girls had not been able to meet Benson yet and of course Sierra was excited to see him again.  It was hard to know what to expect walking up to their apartment and knocking on their door.  Because we had not been there at Benson's birth and he had been in the NICU this was the first time where we would all be together with Benson.  We had spent so much time with Sierra and her mom, talking about this day, planning everything, but here we were, knocking on her door, holding the baby she had given birth to 5 days before.  It's hard to even explain the emotion.  They answered the door and immediately Carmen and Isabel were so excited to see and hold the baby.  They had been with their sister through her pregnancy.  They had been to every doctors appointment with her.  They had been talking to all of us about Benson for months.  They knew that this baby was part of their family and they wanted to meet him.  It was so cute!  Sierra held Benson for a while, looking at his hands and feet, asking questions about how he was doing, talking about her time with him in the hospital.  She was so brave and didn't get emotional, but she was always very good at being brave.  Her mom, Carrie, was a bit more emotional when she held him but still happy and loving with us and with him.  It was a good experience for us to all be together.

Benson's birth family

Benson's beautiful, beautiful birth mom!  

I love open adoption!  I love that we have pictures of us together.  I love that we know Benson's birth family and that they know us.

Pure love!  This picture says it all.

We spent about thirty minutes with Benson's birth family and then drove back to our temporary home at the Williams.  It was so much fun to share this time with Kimmie.  She and I have been through a lot, but this was different.  This was me becoming a mother.   She got to experience it first hand and I loved having her with me through it all.  I also LOVE sharing adoption with everyone and anyone.  It is a special and spiritual experience that I wish everyone had the chance to be a part of.

Benson meeting the Williams family for the first time

Benson's first night at home
I wish there was some way to record every moment, every emotion, every word spoken through this whole process.  I wish I could adequately express the love that we feel for Sierra.  I look at the pictures of her with Benson and just feel complete gratitude to her for the choices she made.  She loves this little boy. She gave us the gift we could not give each other.  She made us parents.  I want Benson to know as much as possible about his birth family, his beginnings and the love that is felt for him.  This has been the most amazing experience of our lives and I just want to remember it!


Premier Dance Center said...

I keep looking at these pictures and can't believe how much he's grown. I cried...and will probably always cry...remembering that week. So many ups and downs and emotions, but THIS was a milestone day. We love you guys are SO, SO grateful for this little boy. ♥

Tiffany Johnson said...

Wow.. it seems like yesterday. He is precious. We love him so so so much. You guys are such great parents. He is lucky to have you as parents, that's for sure. HE's such a sweet little boy, even though being raised by Ben might change that over the years... :-) Just kidding. Love you guys. Hate you for moving AGAIN!