Thursday, March 31, 2016

Adoption Day!

Well it has been some time since this all happened and I am just now being able to post it.


For those who didn't know  we are/were foster care parents. If you would like to read Damien's Story you can read it here. But on November 20th, 2015 we finalized our adoption. 

We were able to adopt him on National Adoption Day. And it was a big party at the court house!  We didn't have any immediate family come down. Mainly because a few months later we would be sealed in Utah where we would see them. So we had our best friends Rick and Jess Lang, and Damiens sister's family attend. Along with everyone who has been apart of his journey here. 

This sweet boy won the heart of every person in the court room. The judge has become an amazing friend in this process and he is very smitten with her. When I arrived we were talking about how long he has been in Foster Care. When our turn came she mentioned he had been apart of the system for over the 1,000. She talked about how when he came to our house he couldn't talk, couldn't connect to people, he had never laughed, or smiled before he came to us. 

After when Damien realized he was the center of attention he put the cheeseyness on and just took it to the max! Luckily Jess is pretty much our personal photographer and took all the shots so we can remember this day for forever. 

We are so grateful this was able to happen! Now on to the sealing post. 

Vent Box

Ok so this has been weighing on my mind for awhile now and I feel the need to share it. Last week we took the opportunity to go to Phoenix zoo. After completing the zoo and waiting for the train we went back up to the splash pad so let the little run around. While there I had an interesting encounter.  While Ben ran to the restroom I sat and watched my little run and run and run. While slightly listening the conversation next to me. It was between a Mom and Dad and they happened to be talking about adoption. Something that I know so many people are grateful for. Anyway it went something like this

M: I could never adopt. I think it is a horrible choice.
D: Why do you say that
M: Can you imagine how the other kids in the family feel?
D: I don't understand
M: I mean I am sure they feel so unloved because their parents picked another child. I don't understand how a family who already has kids could do that to them.
D: Yeah I remember when blank adopted blank. The other kids were so disappointed and felt unloved.
M: Or even putting them with different races. I mean a white family with a black kid is just asking for questions.

Right then munchkin fell on the ground and bonked his head. I wasn't to worried because he wasn't crying and just stood up, kissed it better and came over to tell me. When I didn't freak out and he didn't freak out they complimented me on how well he took it. I said well yeah he wants to go back and play. They asked all the normal questions and I somehow worked into that we are foster parents prepared to adopt. They looked shocked and said oh that is cool. I said yeah both my husband and I are both adopted. They said oh wow! that is cool you all are. I said yeah it is pretty cool, we both were some of the very few in our town. They then went on to ask oh you don't look like your family? I said oh no. In my family some people don't believe my siblings and I are siblings. Let alone that my mom is my mom with her bright blue eyes. My husbands family is just as white as they come. They kind of let it die off there.

But as much as I added a lot to it just to annoy them. I was pretty peeved. I mean I know my family loves me and welcomed me fully to the family. Especially my siblings, and my cousins! There was never a oh well your not part of the family. And I hope I never made my brothers feel unloved. I know for a fact that Ben's family is so grateful for him and love him.

So it was disappointing to hear people be so arrogant towards something that doesn't directly effect them. I have never met someone who didn't think adoption was a great thing. To give a loving family a child who would maybe not have otherwise. I know as an adoptee I am beyond grateful for my family, and how it was meant to be. If you haven't heard Bens story that is just as amazing and meant to be as mine.

That is my soap box....I can't post this for awhile but I feel much better.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

A Little White Lie-TMI

It seems December always has something up its sleeve for us. When we first met one of the greatest people in my life had left the Earth. Then came December 2008 came and one of Ben's best friend also passed away. The following December 2009 we were married and we had a better holiday. I made gifts that year and it was an accomplishment for both of us to give something we actually cared about. The next year 2010 we bought a house, we were apart through the holidays but I finally got to see my husband for Christmas and it was magical. The following year 2011 was hard not because of something terrible. But because we were away from family. I was extremely home sick. We were making ends meet and had saved up to buy people gifts but not for us. Ben took all of his pesos from his mission cashed them in and bought me a Christmas tree. I cried every time I looked at it. Nothing happened in 2012. It was actually a nice December. Then 2013 we announced a pregnancy, everyone was so excited we were finally having a baby. After one miscarriage that year we thought we were in the clear. The following week we delivered the bad news. We miscarried...again. Last year we became parents to Damien. He came just a couple weeks before his birthday which is just a few days before Christmas. I couldn't have been happier to get up and see him have Christmas. He didn't care but it was exciting for us. I had been so looking forward to this year. Just another calm normal Christmas. But there was another plan.

We had our adoption on November 20th. The following Tuesday the 24th we celebrated Thanksgiving with the Langs, I was feeling a little sick and couldn't even finish a full plate of food. The next day I was sick. I stayed in the bathroom all day. I wanted to make Ben a small Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday so I bucked up and went to the store. I made it barely without tossing my stomach contents. When I got home I realized I was late. Way late. So I woke up Thanksgiving day and took a pregnancy test, I took 4. All said the same thing. I WAS PREGNANT. FEAR. that is all I felt. I knew deep in my heart I couldn't get my hopes up. I told Ben and he was excited and scared. He told me. "Don't move you stay in that bed as long as it takes." You see after my D&C my doctor declared me high risk pregnancy. I needed a hormone treatment in order to up my chances to keep my baby. But it was the holiday weekend and they were all out of the office. So I had to wait until Monday to call. So Bed rest it was. I was devastated. I had planned so much the next week and I had to tell people I couldn't help them. We decided to only tell a few select people about my pregnancy because I didn't want to have to announce to everyone and see the light of excitement go from their eyes. So I made it to my first appointment. I got the drugs and left.

My lie you ask. Well we only told a few people, but since I was on bed rest I couldn't do any thing. Everyone was asking were I was, why I wasn't places, some even getting upset. So we decided to tell a bended truth. I was on a hormone treatment, and so I was. Because of all the hormones in me I needed bed rest and relaxation. And so it was true.

A week passed. Just a week. And the pain started. I knew what it was, but I didn't want it. Finally Ben got home from work and I said we need to go to the ER. We packed Damien an over nighter for the Langs. We drove to the ER. Jessica picked up Damien. And there we were. Sitting waiting to be called back. I was crying. I hurt. Finally after being called back. I miscarried.

There I said it. Wow that makes it so much more real. It was painful, not just emotionally but physically. I felt it all. You see my first miscarriage, was terrible emotionally but I passed him at home. No major pain. My second required a D&C because my body would not pass it naturally. And my third I felt it all. I saw him. I wasn't ready. All I could do is yell and hate myself. I knew it. I knew from the beginning. Then they poke, prodded, did everything they needed. The look on my husbands face each time I went through another test was of protection. He didn't want people to touch me. Just to leave me alone. Let me grieve. But they couldn't. I was use to it. He didn't like it. After passing they were scared and we could tell. Eventually the doctor told us.

You see I passed one but there was a mass on my tubes. The ultrasound said a Ectopic Pregnancy. I freaked out. I knew that meant surgery. I don't do well with surgery. My blood either overly clots due to the meds I get or it doesn't clot and then well I bleed a lot. There was nothing they could do that now early morning. My body had enough trauma for one night. And they sent me home with specific instructions to sleep.  Come back Monday for more test, and talk to my doctor.

Sunday, I didn't believe it. I still haven't processed it. But we all stayed in bed. Damien knew something was wrong, so he did his best to keep us laughing and not thinking about it. It was those moments when he left, when Damien wasn't snuggling me and I cried. That I couldn't see a light. That the depression took over.

Monday came. I went to my doctor. He saw me and knew. He almost cried for me. He could see me on the verge of tears. He explained what we were going to do. Tests, more test, then I would need to see a specialist. He would be with me every step of the way. IT WAS NOT MY FAULT.

Its hard to believe that, I KNOW its not. But look at me. Who are they testing. Who had to be on bed rest. Me. I don't blame myself. But I want to know why my body doesn't want to work.

So then I went and got my blood drawn again. And we went out. We saw friends ate food. Saw missionaries. Went on with life. I needed it. I needed the kids. I just needed to keep moving. Its Christmas. I can't miss it. I won't. I won't miss my sons birthday. I will keep moving. They finally called and said no ectopic pregnancy. So no surgery. A little stress left.

Yesterday (Tuesday) Ben took me out, well he took us all driving. He ran errands I sat in the car. It was nice to be out and not doing anything. My brother called, I almost ignored it but I answered. I hadn't wanted to talk to anyone. But he said "I gave you two days. I need to know your ok". And I am, Im moving on. Itll be a long time before I fully move on. I was talking to my best friend Whitney and I said it best to her. I get ready to move on in the grief cycle then I get more test ran, and then I remember and then I got back a million steps.

So those who knew I was on bed rest. Don't hate me, but we couldn't say it without that hurt and wonder. And I am glad we didn't tell people. Its easier to tell you now. We are taking the rest of the year off from somethings. Scouts is still going because the boys keep wanting to come. And we love them. Its at our home so no biggie. But other things, we might not be so eager to attend.

Thank you for the love the prayers. And thank you for reading this. I needed to post it. I needed to acknowledge it.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Welcome to our Home!

So I have been MIA for awhile now but we have exciting news. Obviously I cant post these until everything is final but I want to keep up on all the excitement. We would like to Welcome Damien to our family!!!!!!! He is now three years old and will be adopted into our home in June. He is a little brown boy with black hair and black eyes! Here is the story of how he came to be apart of our family.

So as most of you know we started the Foster Care System with the option to Adopt. We want a family it didn't matter if they were a baby or not but we want a family. So the first night of class we arrive to see a lot of people! One of those people being Maria. Who spoke little to no English. Unfortunately the teacher for the Spanish was out on maternity leave. She was a little lost and Ben told me he wanted to stay after to help her. I said ok. So after class I told our teacher that he would stay and help her. Our teacher was about in tears. So he translated for her and we got it all done. After she said I had no clue you guys were bilingual. I said well Ben is I try but well that is another story.

A few days past and I get a email from her asking us a few questions such as. Are you Interested in Adoption? What would be your limit on special needs? Would you keep fostering? Our answers were YES!!! Our limit on special needs would be as long as I (Tiffany) could care for them on her own since I am a stay at home mom. And yes as long as it was safe for a child we would keep foster.

She then replied saying she had a little boy who needed a forever home and she thinks we would be perfect! She wanted to meet with us the following day to give us more information. So we went and we were set that we would do what we could to bring him home. So she informed us of his situation, she also told us he was 4 and some scary things about him. I was nervous but we still felt right saying yes. So she said ok she would work on setting up a meeting. I told her we were leaving the following week so maybe we should do a meeting after so we all don't get our hopes up.

So after we returned she emailed us to set up a meet and greet. It took some work but we made it happen. We met Damien. Who by the way was 2. A boy we had been told who didn't like people, who never talked to anyone, and never smiled, but definitely wouldn't ever let someone hold him. But by some miracle within five minutes we were playing with him, reading stories, holding hands, talking, and going on a adventure. It was a wonderful time! We told them instantly we wanted him, what did we need to do to bring him home, could we have him on the holidays?? They said yes and started to cry and say they never thought they would find him a home.

 So generally after a meet and greet DES/CPS they ask to do 6 weeks in the office. Mainly because it is somewhere the child feels safe. Then we do 6 weeks of in home visits 3 times a week so they can become normalized to the home.

Well they asked if we would be OK skipping the 6 weeks of visits. And just starting in home visits. Of course we said yes. With that being said we didn't think we would get him for Thanksgiving because it was only a week away. So we continued our Foster Care classes because we knew we couldn't adopt unless we finished. So one night we happened to be in Sierra Vista for class and Daisy called us and asked if we would be ok to have Damien for Thanksgiving we were stoked and said yes. She then informed us that he would be staying two nights with us as she would drop him off the Day before Thanksgiving and pick him up the day after. So in a rush we bought a carseat, a bed, mattress, sheets, etc. We realized we had nothing! But we managed to get it all done. We even got the missionaries to help us set everything up since we didn't have much notice.

So Thanksgiving came. It was amazing. He was a little nervous at first but he calmed right down. And we went to the park with Rick and Jess and the kids. He hadn't been to a park so he just kind of sat with me and took it all in. The next day was crazy. Normally we do a HUGE Thanksgiving, but this year we only have two clothes families come by because we didn't want to overwhelm him. So we had dinner and it was a success. so much Damien fell asleep on my lap. The next day was the worse we had had so much fun. But i knew come 3 they were going to take him back to his Foster home. That I would have to say goodbye and that we would be going back to daily visits and I couldn't protect him there. He didn't want to leave either. He knew he was leaving. It was terrible. DES felt so bad they wanted to leave him with us. They then asked us to attend court the following week.

We then kept with the visits until the day of court came. We were so happy to be there. Hoping for a glimpse of him. But he wasn't there. But something magical happened. The DES worker asked the judge if DES could place him with us due to his advancement with connections. The court ruled YES! So pending the background check we would have him living with us. So a day passed and they called for the information. And then we got the call that the next day Damien would be coming to live with us (Dec. 5) and so it happened. On Dec. 5. Our son came to live with us. And our life has been complete ever since.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Hello there!

I so wish we could update you guys on everything going on in our house.We have so much excitement and so much change that it would be nice to put it all out here. But I can't. I do have to say it is nice not being able to post on facebook,or instagram, or anything. If I want to update people I have to call home and tell them. But just know come October we should be able to update you guys. But the last 7 months has been a whirlwind of emotions and crazyness. I have been trying to save blog posts on this happening so that in October everyone will know all. but its harder than i thought! sending love!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

It is time again

I am so sorry for not keeping everyone updated! So many things have happened in the last couple of weeks and I am not able to share them at this time. At least not until things get going or things get finished.

We missed a class to go to Vegas to our friends wedding, and drove to Draper to catch the quarter final game! Then we headed to So Utah to catch up with family for two days before driving back to Vegas to jump on a plan and head back here. But we were heading back to exciting things coming our way. (For more info talk to our families)

So with that we missed class 2 and 3. But last week we got to class 4. It was a difficult class. They had us do an imaginary walk. We closed our eyes and imagined our spouse, our animals and our house (and kids if we had any). Then we were to imagine someone coming to our door and telling us there is another family excited to have us as a mom or dad. Then imagine saying you only have ten minutes to pack a small carry on bag with items you will need. Now as you are in the vehicle I inform you that you will not be able to speak to your family or see them until the time in intended. Now imagine a year has passed and I return to inform you that you are going home. You are going back to your family and your home. How do you feel??

This was to show us what kids feel. It was extremely hard.  I cannot imagine it being real. And nor do I want to but it helped us understand how these kids will feel. We can't wait for our next class. Tuesdays are long but I feel so much better when they are done. I want them to be finished so we can move on and get licensed it is making a lot of things hard but we will keep going. To many things depend on it.

Here is the updated list
* Fire Extinguisher
* Slip Resistant Mat for Tub
* 4 Carbon Monoxide Detectors
* Trigger Locks
* Ammo Safe

House Hold To Do
* Check Smoke Detectors
* Emergency Evacuation Plan
* Draw the Emergency Evacuation Place
* Change Water Filters
* Change Hot Water Temp
* Unload guns
* Lock up Ammo
* Redo Address Sign
* Clean Up Front Patio
* Move all Flammable Items
* Build a Cabinet with lock for poison items
* Safeguard Flammable Items
* Safeguard all "Keep out of reach of children" items
* Lock up Medications
* Clean up Yard
* New Gravel for bare spots
* Dog Run
* Organize rooms
* Spray for Bugs
* Organize the entire house
* Deep clean House
* House Repairs
* Create a more Flexible Cleaning schedule

Kid Room or Items needed For Kids
* Build toddler bed
* pack n play
* crib
* Build Closet organization system
* Bedding Toddler (2 Boys)
Booster Seat
* Diaper Bag..
* Blankets
* Mini Suitcases or Duffle Bags
* Rubbermaid Tubs with Lids
* Any clothes possible!

We are so close to being done!!! Hopefully in the next two weeks we can have over half of what is left finished.

Until then....

Monday, October 27, 2014

What a Week

Seriously what a week it has been.

So we had our first official class to get certified by the state for Foster Care. Luckily we camed s prepared that it was a breeze. But with that said we had to sign a Media paper that states we cannot post everything that happens or information pertaining to each child coming into our home. Stuff like names, situations, information specifically about the children. However I can keep you updated on things. For example. The meeting went great. Really it was very informative and we were able to really see what we are getting ourselves in to. We met with the head lady who is awesome by the way. Ben ended up needing to translate for a sweet little lady and our worker got very excited saying that she is in dire need of a bilingual family I told her I don't speak but will learn more she said that is fine the kids just feel safe if someone speaks Spanish. Also the fact we have no kids currently puts us to the top of the list for kids that need some extra one on one time. We are very excited. Other than that we don't have much news. Unless you have talked to our parents then you are updated on extras.

So lets talk about this week.

Monday-Ben had off so we did projects. Ben worked on his garage and I finished transferring the Spare bedroom to the dogs room. Now they share and Kona is not sure she likes a bed being in her big room.

Tuesday-We met up with a friend in Nogales to see some missionaries that are about to head home and served in Douglas. Then we drove to Sierra Vista for our class, however we were early so we stopped at Lowes and got stuff to up do my front porch. And a stuff for other projects.

Wednesday-I started to gut out my kitchen, (I have started to go room by room and prepare each room and make sure it is completely foster care ready) I ended up rearranging our whole kitchen. I threw out so much stuff its not even funny.

Thursday-kept gutting out my kitchen, it was Appliance day.

Friday- Impromptu run to Sierra Vista (ask our parents) that night we decided to go on a date to celebrate and right before we got to the mustang I saw a snake and told ben to go back to the house. So we found a 2 foot rattle snake and it had just eaten. We ended up killing it. But it was a scary night.

Saturday-probably the second craziest day. So I had a 'interview' with Bishop at 930. Then the Missionaries came at 10:30 (they needed Ben's advice), then the Handyman finished his project. Then we took a small 30 minutes nap. I then got up got ben ready for work, went to a birthday party, and finished my kitchen. I just have to clean the floors and windows.

Sunday- So this day ended up being the craziest. Ha ha I know I keep saying that! I ended up to church early because Ben has bishopric meetings and was coming home to go to bed when they were over which was right before church started and I needed it for class and still needed to download the video. So I headed down to swap at church. Then we had our primary program which was awesome I cried my little eyes out. Mainly because I kept looking at our previous Bishop a sweet old man who was crying and then I started crying and man oh man! Then we went about church. After I got home I was able to take a 30 minute nap before Ben needed to get up for work. In the moment of getting Ben ready I realized we had no food, literally no food. I had thrown so much out I couldn't make anything so I ran to BK and got him a burger then back home to send him to work. Then back to the grocery store. After I got home and put the groceries away I unloaded the dishwasher and started to clean the second room. I finally sat down and then my friend called she was having a horrible time breathing and she needed to go to the E.R. and asked if I could watch her kids. So I got up and drove over. When I got there she found out her husband wouldn't be able to get there for about 20 minutes and had called our friend Clemens to come over and watch the kids while I drove her to Bisbee (30 minutes away) to get help. We made it there by 9:00 and we didn't end up back home until about 12:30 am. It was a long night but she finally was able to breathe. I got home just before Ben.

It has been a long emotional week. And I am ready for this week. Just 7 more days and we are headed home! I am excited for a mini vacation and to see family.