“You Had Better Sit Down,” he said.

photo of Tate and Cora from 2005I try to keep things lighthearted here, often at the expense of my children and their antics.

Today I was cleaning out some papers and found this writing from the past.

I may roar my terrible roar and gnash my terrible teeth at them sometimes, but they’ve brought me the two most perfect days of my life.


It was October 22, 1997. I was teaching in my first grade classroom when the school secretary came in to tell me I had a phone call.

After I got someone to watch the kids I walked into the school office. The secretary smiled. “It’s Steve and he seems very excited. I bet this is it.”

Nervously, I picked up the phone. Perhaps this WAS it. Perhaps the phone call I had been dreaming of for so long was finally happening.

When I said hello he answered, “You had better sit down.”

photo of TateThose words will be with me for the rest of my life. They are the last words I heard as a person who had gone through years of infertility, disappointment, longing and still no child to love. The very next sentence out of his mouth told me that we had a baby boy. The wait was over. We were parents.

The next day we drove to the Lutheran Family and Children’s Services office in St. Louis. When we stepped off the elevator and were greeted with smiles and hugs, I broke into tears. I was all too much. My dreams were coming true right then.

The social worker asked if we were ready to meet our son. The door opened and there he was. We were in awe. This was the baby who would be our baby forever. We looked at him and touched him and marveled over him. It was a perfect moment.

After that wonderful day we experienced many of the highs and lows of parenthood and enjoyed it all so much we were soon ready for another child. We went on the adoption waiting list for a second time.


Our next surprise came on Valentine’s Day 2000. Not a phone call, but a stick that turned blue. After being told that it was highly unlikely we could ever conceive, I was pregnant. Another dream come true.

On September 30 I was putting a quiche in the oven when my water broke. We dropped Tate off at his grandparents and headed to the hospital.  photo of Cora

I remember the contractions and the epidural and the pushing. She was a big baby (9 lbs. 4oz) and that made things difficult. I remember the talk of a C-section. No! I had not worked this hard for this long only to have to go the operating room. I was determined.

After a few more big, I mean really big, pushes Cora arrived at 2:17 p.m. on October 1, 2000. Round, pink, healthy, beautiful.

Although it was against hospital rules, I kept her in my bed with me that night. We were both wide-awake; high from the exhilarating experience we’d just been through. The moonlight streamed in the window and landed on us. I stared at her and she cooed little bird noises at me. Another perfect moment.

Now their baby days are gone. Their toddler days are over. The elementary years have slipped by. None of that has diminished the memory of those two perfect days.

The miracle of these wonderful children.


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