Thursday, August 27, 2009

Gabriel is doing great! He had his 1st well baby appointment and everything is looking good :) Gabriel is now weighing in at 7lbs 13 oz and 19 1/2 inches long. Gabe gained 11oz in 5 days but didn't get any longer. No wonder we thought his cheeks were looking a little fuller! Gabriel is amazing and we are just basking in the love this little boy has given us.
Gabe in his cloth diaper and cover... he's so cute!

Please pray for Gabriel's neurology appointment on Friday. He's positively perfect right now and we just pray that the doctor says that the schzyencephaly is causing no problems :) Please also keep Gabe's birth family in your prayers as well as our family and friends laid off and looking to be called back or for a new job.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Bring Gabriel Home... The Gift of Gabriel

***Gabe's arrival home will be over several posts because it takes me forever to download pictures on to blogger***

Monday through Friday were the longest days of my life... all that I wanted was to hold our Gabriel in my arms. I never envisioned how hard those days were... days where the clock seemed to stand still, when night time hours went slower than ever and every time the phone rang I longed for a voice to tell me Gabe was ours.
Eventually all of the papers were signed and Miss B put Gabriel in my arms. I can't imagine the sacrifice and strength it took for Miss B and Mr C to allow us the privilege of calling Gabriel our own. We love Gabriel so much, but so do they. They loved him enough to allow us to take him home. They wanted more for him then they thought they would be able to provide him with... and they answered our prayers.
Gabriel is not only our precious gift from God... but also our gift from Miss B and Mr. C. Matt and I will forever be grateful to them for allowing us the opportunity to love this little boy. And, as we promised Miss B's father at Crocker Park - we will do our best to raise him the best that we can. But we won't do it alone. Our little Gabriel will not only have his Mama and Daddy and the whole LaGorga/Thomas family to call his own but he will also have his birth family. Gabriel will never have the opportunity to wonder why he was adopted because for as long as it is in my power, Gabriel will not only know his birth family loves him but he will know them. We have the wonderful privilege of calling him our own... the least we could do is share him with the ones who gave us this gift.
God is so good to have given us the most wonderful gift of Gabriel and our new family!

A little photo description of bring Gabriel home.....

Matt driving to pick-up our boy!

So excited!

Gabe and Daddy ready to go!

Our sweet boy at home

Sleeping in his cradle.
Love & Blessings, Meredith

Friday, August 21, 2009

He's home

Gabriel is home. Thank you all for your prayers. Please keep the birth family in your prayers, today was a difficult day. Talk to everyone later.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

24 hours to go...

So, our 72 hour time frame has been delayed a bit. I figured it would happen because, well, c'mon, there was no way our lawyer would be up to getting things done at 6:00 in the morning. However, I was thinking that the signing of the papers would happen mid-morning then... once again, I figured wrong. They're shooting for Miss B and Mr. C to sign around 3, so "hopefully" we'll be ready to come home around 4.

"Hopefully" is the key word here because with just a change of mind, Gabriel may never come home. And its that thought that seems to haunt my every thought. Today as I prepared our home for the arrival of Gabe, I realized that all of our preparations may be for nothing. But I am holding on to hope: hope that Miss B won't change her mind, hope that I'll be able to be Gabriel's Mama. But the hope I'm struggling to find with this I'm searching for in God. "But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you."Psalm 39:7. So as I struggle to survive these next 24 hours, I'm going to keep hanging onto hope, the hope I've found in Him.

Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD.Psalm 1:24. I have so much hope in the Lord, I'm just having a difficult time being strong. Praying tonight will be our last Gabriel free night, that tomorrow we will be a family of 3.

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Not blood, LOVE

We spent another glorious hour with our precious Gabriel. Somehow tonight it was even harder to leave him than last night... it feels as though we left an even bigger piece of our hearts with him. But like last night I had the assurance that the arms I left him in love him as madly and deeply as I do. The only difference is they love him enough to let him go home and I'm blessed enough to keep him.

Until this past week, while I have thought about, prayed for and tried to envision what Miss B and her family would go through, I really had no clue. And then yesterday... seeing the love for this little boy in their eyes full of the knowledge and sadness that shortly they will be letting him go derailed me. I can not possibly imagine what they are going through. And while most can not possibly imagine what Aaron and I are going through (and the people who have no idea but say they do - ugh, that's totally a whole other post entirely) the challenges we are facing our entirely different.

Let me tell you a little about Miss B and our babies birth family. Miss B (and Mr. C for that matter) made a decision I can't even fathom. Out of love for one little boy, they decided to give him the life that they aren't able to give him yet. Immense love is the only way Miss B could choose adoption, spend time with Gabriel and still greet us lovingly when we come to visit. Miss B's parents are fantastic... supporting their daughter in every way, encouraging her to do what's best for Gabriel, all the while knowing what they are giving up. But again, it's all about love.

But speaking of giving things up... we are having an open adoption. When we first met with MCB we said we were pretty open to anything but I never envisioned this. I never thought that our baby's birth family would become family to us... that I'd cry and mourn over the loss that's coming when Gabriel comes home with us. I never imagined that I would love and care for them as deeply as Matt and I do. But God surprised us and we're not only gaining a son, we're getting more family. Gabriel will always have a B, C and Gama and Gampa A. He'll know that these people love and cherrish him just like his parents do. And as much as they want to be involved, we want them there! Birthdays, holidays, picnics in the park... the LaGorga family may not totally be complete without Miss B and her family. God has blessed us so much with this wonderful little boy and the wonderful love that comes with him. This love just reinforces the fact that family isn't blood and genetics, but love. Isn't God good?

And now for your view pleasure... Gabriel Matthew, day 2

Together again

Daddy and his boy...

My two favorite boys

He couldn't possibly be any more perfect!

Sweet Gabriel with his Gama A rubbing his cheek.

I HATE feet... but there is nothing cuter than these little feet

Look at those long toes! Hopefully that means his balance will be better than his Mama's
So, I apologize in advance for the excess of pictures but be forewarned... there are many more to come :)
Tomorrow Matt and I get to see Gabriel in the morning! We're heading to the hospital early to meet with the neonatologist. Please pray for a good report! After that we're going to head over and love on our boy for a little bit and then Matt has to go to work. I, however, am able to visit Gabriel again later in the evening... my heart is relishing the fact that I will be able to spend double the amount of time with him.
Tonight I feel peace, God given peace, that Gabriel will come home with us. I hate to ask for more prayers... but I'm going too. Would you pray that I continue to feel peace? There are so many emotions and Satan really wants his way to try to break us down but we know God has a plan and just pray that his plan is for us to be Gabriels parents.
Love & Blessings, Meredith

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Too Beautiful for Words

This evening Matt and I met Gabriel for the first time. It was absolutely surreal, totally indescribable. Positively perfect in every way: 10 long fingers, 10 little toes, a head full of medium brown hair, cute as a button, an absolute dream!

Me and Gabe

Our 1st family photo

Our 2nd family photo - I can't keep my eyes off of him :)

And our beautiful Gabriel.

We are so in love with this little boy and can't wait to bring him home with us. Holding him in my arms was wonderful, leaving him at the hospital was heart breaking. The only solace in leaving him was that he would be in the care of his birth family; a family who loves this little boy more than I could have imagined. Would you please pray for them: for Miss B, Mr. C and their families? Pray that they will find peace in their hearts with this decision, that they will find strength in making this decision, and for comfort in their hearts when Gabriel comes home. And while I desperately want you to pray for the birth family, if you have some extra prayer time would you pray for me and Matt. That the next 58 hours go by quickly, that we have peace in our hearts in the knowledge that Gabriel will be home soon and that we continue to draw nearer to Him as we wait.

God is so good and as we wait, we will continue to acknowledge His goodness and His will in this situation. And if you see that I'm forgetting to do so, please help me find my way back.

Our God is a god of miracles and today I held one in my arms and will forever hold him in my heart.

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Name Post

Gabriel Matthew LaGorga. It has a nice ring to it don't you think? Well we do and that is the name of our little man.

After a few little oopses letting the name slip, we figured we might as well let everyone know! It took quite a while to figure it out but we finally did! The sweetest part of the name, besides the meaning, is that this name comes not only from us but from the heart of Miss B as well. Like every aspect of this little boys life we want him to know how much his birth family loved him, and this is just one way we can honor that bond.

We also love what his name stands for! Gabriel: God is Mighty (He is!) and Matthew (Gift from God) which he definately is!

We're so excited and can't wait to see him...hopefully tonight! He's undergoing the usual normal baby tests as well as a few others to check out the inutero diagnosis! Please pray for our little Gabriel as he undergoes the tests, that everything comes back normal and that we bring him home soon!

Love & Blessings, Meredith

He's Here

Our little baby boy made his entrance to the world today at 6:03. Weighing in at 7 lbs 2oz and 19" long, he was screaming and crying when he made his arrival. So far, our little one is doing good and our rejoices for his arrival are met with our prayers that he's healthy and for the miracle we've been praying for. Miss B is also doing well - we are so proud of her, grateful for all that she had to endure to bring this baby into the world and praying for a quick recovery and peace of mind.

We're not sure when we'll be able to meet him, but we'll keep you updated!

God is SO good.

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Here

Today is the day! Shortly Miss B will be arriving at the hospital with her family to be induced. Please, please pray for safety for Miss B and our little man. Please pray that the delivery goes smoothly and for peace in the hearts of Miss B and her family as they love and let go of this little boy. Please pray for our little boy - that the problems that the doctors saw are no where to be found, that he's healthy and strong. Pray for Matt and I - that God calms are anxieties and that we can wait patiently until we can hold our little boy in our arms. There are so many different things that can change so please pray for God's will in this situation.

We'll keep you updated on how everything goes. I'll probably update facebook a bit more regularly than here so follow me there if you'd like!

Thank you for your prayers... we are so excited to see our little boy, to hold him, love him and bring him home!

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

On the up-side

In retrospect last nights post was a little bit of a downer. I thought about removing it.. but as this is not only a blog to update our friends and family, it's also a way for me to chronicle our journey, I'm going to keep it posted. This blog is about being real... and my fears and insecurities are a real part of this adoption process... and looking back on this, I'd love to see where my faith grows and this story takes us!

But for some fun things... all of our diapers are in! We've got our car seat installed, proper laundry soap bought and clothes washed, folded and cleaned! A Welcome Home Baby X party is being planned (X stands for the name we think we've picked out) and all of the must haves have been bought or borrowed! I've almost finished the book On Becoming Baby Wise and found lots of bargains out of Baby Bargains. We're ready!

We've also been able to spend a little bit of extra time with Miss B and her family. Noshing over lunch this weekend provided us all an opprotunity to become more comfortable with one another, share and find common bonds. Obviously we're having an "open" adoption... and I love it! I want this little man of ours to know exactly how much he is loved. That Miss B didn't choose adoption because of a lack of love but because of an over abundance of love. And that every person in his "family" loves and cherrishes him. In this day and age, the more love a child can have the better... and boy is this little boy loved!

Less than a week to go until this little boy makes his appearance in this great big world and while we don't know exactly what to expect our God who knitted him together in the womb knows exactly what's going to happen. And we are so excited for the arrival of Baby LaGorga!

I know, I know... you wanna know the name.... but it's a surprise :)

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Monday, August 10, 2009

Rollercoaster Rides

I used to spend endless days at Cedar Point... feeling the wind in my face, screaming like crazy and getting an adrenaline rush! I never questioned the safety of the ride or the experience of the operator I just had fun. And then one year it changed... I'm not sure why but I questioned the safety of the ride, the harness holding me in, and wondered about the qualifications of the operator. And the thrill of the roller coaster was no longer exciting but a little scary. While I'm sure if I go to Cedar Point again, I'll muster up some courage and find myself strapped in and ready to go.

As I grow older I find that my recollections of roller coasters adhere to the way I look at life... just about every life experience I encounter feels like a roller coaster... ups and downs and even some stomach turning loops. Anyone who's gone down the path of adoption knows all about this roller coaster ride... but like in most things, I underestimated the magnitude of the ups and downs.

I thought that the paperwork, interviews and meetings were where the ups and downs were found and once we would be matched the roller coaster ride would ebb and life would find a balance. Boy was I wrong.

Don't get me wrong, our adoption experience with Miss B has been wonderful! She is simply the best and Matt and I absolutely adore her and her family. We love spending time with them and look forward to the future as we journey together in this world of adoption.

So while we've had a few ups and downs with the actual process (dealing with multiple agencies is a little overwhelming) most of my ups and downs have been emotional. Excitement when our diapers came in, when we bought his "coming home outfit" and when we picked out a name (unless we change our minds, again :) But I feel the downs when I awake in bed at night praying to God for a miracle for our little boy and wonder down the road of "what-ifs." And my biggest what-if is the most consuming: What if Miss B changes her mind? I know the statistics yet I know my heart... and each time we visit with Miss B or exchange emails, she takes a little bit more of my heart with her for "our" little boy. We love him, I love him... and I know Miss B and her family love him too. And that's why this what-if is all consuming... because whatever happens, this little boy will know nothing but love but I just want him to know our love too!
But when I wake-up in the middle of the night or these thoughts invade sporadic waking thoughts, I find myself singing praise music and relying on this passage from Matthew:

"For this reason I say to you, do not be anxious for your life, as to what you shall eat, or what you shall drink; nor for your body, as to what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body than clothing? "Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? "And which of you by being anxious can add a single cubit to his life's span? "And why are you anxious about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory did not clothe himself like one of these. "But if God so arrays the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more do so for you, O men of little faith? "Do not be anxious then, saying, `What shall we eat?' or `What shall we drink?' or `With what shall we clothe ourselves?' "For all these things the Gentiles eagerly seek; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you. "Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

(Matthew 6: 25 - 34) I read this each morning and recite it throughout the day.. and it calms my fears, for a while at least. Or until my hands become still and my mind starts to wonder.

As our due date approaches (bumped up to the 17), please pray for peace for Matt and I, for health and safety for Miss B and our baby boy and for Miss B's family to feel the love and comfort of God as they give us our future and grieve what they'll miss.

So tonight, after I say my prayers I will "Cast all my anxieties upon Him because He cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7

Love & Blessings, Meredith

Monday, August 3, 2009

Oh My Goodness

Life is so wonderfully busy I can hardly catch my breath! I have more to share about our latest get together with Miss B, what's going on and what we're up too! But for now I'll just share these: My sweet 5 year old nephew wanted to get me something from Toys-R-Us when he was there with Nonnie (my mom). After she gently told him I probably didn't want anything from Toys-R-Us he promptly picked something out for his soon-to-be baby cousin. Isn't that sweet!

This book, On the Night You Were Born, was given to me by a darling friend of mine that I met at work. It is the most beautifully pictured, eloquently written childrens book about what happens on earth when a baby is born. I can't read it without crying and can't wait to share this sweet story with our baby.
This soft blanket was made by a woman at my church and won by my dad at a silent auction. A man of little words, kept upping his wager so that he could win this for our little one. At the time of the auction, our little baby boy was just a pipe dream... and now he's a reality!

And this precious little outfit is what are baby boy will be wearing home from the hospital! I love little boys in stripes and I love little boys in brown - so this organic outfit is perfect for this all-natural type of girl! We also recieved the sweetest matching booties... I couldn't believe how small they were!
So much more to share, I'm so excited about this little (BIG) blessing of ours.
Love & Blessings, Meredith