PAGE # 30
6:00 pm
"Where the hell is that Elf on the Shelf?"  
I was talking to myself, but my mom was there too.
"It's over there," she pointed toward the bookcase.  "When's the last time you moved him?"
"How should I know?"  I asked.  "I can't keep up with him this Christmas."
"You're very irritable," my mom noted.
"I'm sorry," I said.
She hugged me.  
"It's okay.  I'm here now.  I can take over Elf duty from now on."
"Shh!"  TJ scolded us.  "Don't let Sara hear you!"
Sara was playing quietly in the corner.  A few days earlier, I had tried to prepare her for our maybe baby.  I explained that she might be getting a baby sister.  Her response had been short and somewhat surreal:
"Two mommies!" she had said.
Sara is a very bright two year-old, but this seemed extraordinary.
"Maybe she heard you talking on the phone," my mom reasoned.  "Maybe you said something about the baby having two mommies."
TJ had a different explanation:
"Maybe she thinks having a little sister means she is going to be a mommy too.  Maybe she thinks the two mommies are you and herself."
My mom nodded.  "That's probably it."
"I still think it's weird," I said.  "Because if this adoption happens, this baby really is going to have two mommies."
I looked over at Sara.  She was still playing with her stuffed Mickey Mouse.
"But the baby isn't going to know that," my mom said.
"Of course she will!" I exclaimed. 
"Are you going to tell her she's adopted?"
"Mom!  Of course!"
"Well, that just seems very confusing for the child."
"Grandma," TJ interjected.  "You're not supposed to lie about it.  You're supposed to tell the baby all along."
"Oh, what do I know?" my mom asked.
I could see TJ was getting excited to talk about all the adoption research he'd been doing.
"There's so much information on the internet," TJ explained.  "I found this one website that has all these ideas for projects we can do with her.  One of them is this family tree, where you branch together both sides of her family:  biological and adoptive.  We have to help her integrate everything," he clasped his hands together.  
 I was proud of TJ.  He was growing up to be a kind and thoughtful young man.
 "It's not easy to be adopted, Grandma," TJ added.  "We have to learn all about adoption issues so we can help her throughout life."
"Oh, what do I know?" my mom repeated. 
"Sara!" he called out.  "Come sing with me!"
"Brother!"  She ran to him.  
My mom watched as the kids sang and danced together.

I took the opportunity to sneak into my bedroom and check my phone for text messages.  

Tom was gone.  He was probably eating dinner with some very important people.  We were informed earlier in the day that Kendra was likely getting induced in the morning.  But she might not make it till then.  Tom had promised he'd catch the last flight home.  

At exactly 6:32 pm that night, he sent me the following text messages:
No flight after 8 and will not make it.
Traffic would be impossible.
Will take 6 am flight.
I wrote back:
I thought you said there was a late night flight?
He wrote:
That's only in the summer.  
It's winter so less flights.
Did not realize.
I managed to text back:
I thought you checked!
Before making this decision!
You said last night, "I am sure that there is a 9:30 flight out." 
Remember, you looked it up.  And then reassured me.
He wrote:
My mistake.
Must have made an error.
And I wrote:
What the fuck are we doing?
And then I dropped the phone.  

A terrible sound was coming from the laundry room.  

I flung open the door and saw that water was flooding everywhere.
"Are you fucking kidding me?" 
I was talking to myself, but my mom was there too.

To Be Continued...

1 comment:

I never got to say goodbye said...

It always shocks me how many people do not tell their adopted child they are adopted even in this day. I had a friend who was a PAP only wanting a girl baby and she was adamant she was not going to tell the child. I would hope through learning more she would have changed her mind. Luckily she did not adopt but it always boggled my mind when common sense says this is not to be a secret!!!