It was supposed to be different. We’d spent so much energy preparing ourselves, the house, his room. For months, I’d met with Marisol, the transition counselor provided by the agency. I’d say we even became friends. But the closer the date got, the actual trip to Argentina, the meeting in the flesh, handing over of unnamed child, I got more and more anxious. Cold feet. Lost my appetite. Sleep was spotty at best. Just couldn’t do it.
And it isn’t so bad, not a huge deal, if this was our first time.
My husband, Anthony, is pissed. Of course, I understand why. It’s been a huge investment of time, money and risk for us both. But we finally talk. We cover the gamut: our miscarriage in 2008, how many times we thought we were with child since: again, repeat, again. The pressure from both of our families, especially my mom.
It seemed like Anthony really heard me like never before, finally understood my anxieties. Maybe I said some things I’d held back, too. I even told him about the pill. Finally, after months of pressing, not to mention screwing, he left the baby decision to me.
Now we’re at Kennedy airport. We’re going to do this. While Anthony runs to get coffee, I take his picture from my purse. The baby, Manuelito. One tiny monkey. I place the other hand on my abdomen. Willing myself to stay here, not disappear.
“I’m coming,” I whisper, “can you hear me?”