This guest post is by Amanda Jane Avis, a single adoptive mother.
It all began with a phone call to my mom.
“Hello?” she said.
“Mom!” I said. “Ok, you and dad have to meet me at Long Beach Airport in about five hours. I’ll send you the flight info in a minute. I, um can tell you…”
“What? Why? You just got to Austin, I thought.”
“Mom! Yeah, yeah! I arrived six days ago, but please just pick me up at the airport and then we have to drive to Northridge Hospital because…”
“Amanda! What is going on? Your dad has plans today and…”
“Mom! Be quiet! Just listen to me. I’m a MOM! And you’re a grandma! And my daughter is about to be born right now. We need to…”
“No! No! This doesn’t happen like this. This isn’t the way this happens! You just began this process about six weeks ago!”
“Well, it’s happening. Like this. Now! A birth mom chose me as the baby’s mommy and I have been in this town for six days, but I’m flying home to you and Dad and…I’m a Mom! I don’t even have a crib or bedding picked out. No clothes. What kind of diapers do I…?”
“Oh my God!” she said. “This is really happening? Ok, ok. It’s been, what, 39 years since I had a newborn in my house. I’ll start ordering online. What? What do you have to do? Who have you talked to? Oh my…is it a boy or a girl?”
While shouting into my cell phone at my seriously shocked mother, I clutched the land line receiver so I could take mental notes from what the social worker at the hospital was telling me.
The recent events of poking and prodding my body with needles for IVF procedures seemed a million miles away and completely separate from the immense joy that had just befallen me.
My arms were moving as if unattached from my torso, throwing random clothing in a duffle bag.
I was sweating and I don’t sweat, unless I’m training myself.
You see, I have taught in the fitness/wellness industry for 20 years and I know how to kick someone’s booty, especially my own.
And I’ve worked in some amazing facilities and even opened my own for 10 years with crazy situations, from client egos, to colleague competition, to industry back stabbing, to being a part of a handful of incredibly rewarding physical and energetic achievements.
I’ve taught porn stars, huge celebrity names and insanely talented athletes.
I’ve been hit on hard by married men, dripping in success and also ignited and halted fiery relationships within the walls of my business.
And yes, I can be your trainer, your teacher, your friend, and even your therapist.
I love what I do and I study it, live it, feel it, breathe it. I’m passionate about it and am confident that my joy of movement will inspire you to be better, live better, breathe better.
But wait! Now I’m about to become a mom!
I’m a mom to a newborn baby girl and I don’t even know if I can change a diaper!
I was convinced that I had about a year to prepare myself for answering the phone one day and getting “the Call.” The call that tells you, you’ve been chosen. You’re the one. You’re the mommy!
But no. I had a few moments, seconds really to digest it.
Would the birth mom change her mind? Would she allow me to fall head over heels for this baby girl and then decide it’s not right?
A tiny bit of fear seeped into my overwhelming excitement, but I had to keep moving forward.
I drove 30 minutes south to the Austin airport, where I’d never been. I got on a plane, trembling from excitement and fear and my heart gushing with love and sat with a tapping foot for the three hour flight.
I then sat in my dad’s car, barking orders of how to maneuver through LA rush hour traffic because I had only been in Texas a year, so I still knew the ins and outs of the 405.
I did my makeup seventeen times and asked myself another seventeen times, “Do I look like a mom?”
We finally arrived at the hospital! I ran, in my most mom-type heels to the entrance, got my badge for the NICU and prayed the elevator would hustle.
We all three—my mother, father and myself—holding hands, or arms, or purse straps, or pant legs from nervousness, entered the brightly lit, long room full of sweetly smiling nurses.
I was guided toward the opposite end of the room and I saw her. I saw the most beautiful sight I had ever seen. My daughter.
There she was. Just waiting oh, so patiently for her mommy to fly over three states and meet her.
That’s when I began the most glorious job of my life.
Amanda Jane Avis is a fitness and wellness teacher and loves to share the joy of movement with her daughter, Phoebe. Adoption was “in the stars,” as they say for her and remains strong today, as she will be a mommy again and Phoebe will be a big sister—something they both look forward to, their hearts bursting with love.
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