So the cribs are bought, the nurseries set up, and we are doing everything humanly possible to prepare for how drastically our lives were about to change. Me and my husband were sitting down watching a movie together and I just began to sob.. I was so stressed out and maxed out and these beautiful babies weren't even here yet. It was in that moment I realized God was giving me the answer that we had both been praying on.
And the answer was "These are not your babies.."
Now, you can imagine my resistance and complete annoyance and frustration being told this. I felt like all I hear is NO from God in regards to children by this point. HE took our pregnancies, HE took our quads, and NOW... HE is telling us that these little ones are not meant for us.
It wasn't until I actually had a moment to stop from all the preparing I was doing to actually be quiet enough to hear what God was telling me. And I was PISSED.
I let our social worker know that although we were so excited and thankful we were chosen by the social workers, there is no way we can have 3 kids all at once and have them all receive the best attention, care, and love they deserve.
Real quick... How the adoption process works thru the county... so once you are approved with your home study and everything is done, you are waiting to be matched. So the placement coordinator gets a baby, case, sibling set across her desk and says ok.. I who would be a good fit from all the approved families. Looks up in their data base according to the childs make up ( Some families only want mexican, white, asian, african american babies. Healthy, not healthy, 0-5 months, 1-5 years old etc) And then the top 5 families come up that would be the best match for that child/baby/etc.
So once they have all 5 families home studies, they notify the social worker attached to that potential adoptive family and let then know their application has been pulled for possible placement.
Then all the social workers of all the families get together, and the placement coordinators, and they select the top TWO families for that child/baby/etc. They pick two families so that if for whatever reason the 1st selected family is not prepared for THREE BABIES UNDER 2 YEARS OLD WHEN THEY ONLY WANTED ONE....they have a back up.
I hope that makes sense....
Not only were me and my husband incredibly disappointed that we couldn't take on the sibling set of 3, but we were terrified our decision to back out of being selected would make us look "BAD" to the placement coordinator and other social workers. Would they NOT pick us ever again? Would they think we are BAD parents? Would they think we really didn't want this? I mean, the anxiety was off the charts when in actuality.. we shouldn't have even been asked if we wanted to take on THAT many children at once.
But thats not what the County Adoption System cares about. They in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM care about the adoptive parents. Now, you may be thinking.. well, they shouldn't care about you..they should care about the best interest of the child/children. 100% true. However thats not what they care about either. They care about placing children/kids/babies in homes. Safe homes? Good homes? I personally don't think so. I think there are so many children in the foster care system that heartbreakingly it has become a case of just get the child into a home.
They saw how eager me and my husband were. They saw a young happily married couple that had a great and happy home, and through loss and heartache..were completely vulnerable. So lets try and give them as many as possible.
Which let me take you back to our HOMESTUDY. As much as I loved our home study worker...he pulled out red flags within the system like I had never seen. #1 according to state regulations and the LAW, each child has to have their own room. A "room" has to have a door that closes, a window, dresser, and a bed/crib.
We lived in a 2 bedroom apartment with an open office..so we were NOT equipped to legally take on 3 children, room wise. Our office did NOT have a door nor could one be put it. And I remember him asking us "So you can put a door in here right?" And my husband saying "Well its an apartment building we cant alter the building, soo?" Yet we were still approved for THREE kids anyway.
HUGE RED FLAG!
But me, being naive and eager... thought "hey awesome! more babies!"
Another HUGE RED FLAG... during your home inspection everywhere is going to be searched. Obviously to make sure your home is suitable for children. No dead bodies under the bed, no rats in the closet, etc. Makes sense right? Thats why for days leading up to our inspection I made sure to clean out every single one of our walk in closets and organize it Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous status! I mean these closets were Bloomingdales worthy by the time I was finished with them. And as OCD as it sounds.. I couldnt wait to show them off during inspection.
See! Im a good organized mom! Look at my amazing closet!.. thats how my mind was thinking.
Yet to my surprise.. our closets were never even checked. WAIT WHAT?! So not only do you NOT want to check out this massive closet that could be a room and see if I have neighborhood kids stolen in there... but you don't even wanna look after the days of work put in?...ok... SMH. RED FLAG!
Didn't check under the beds- could of had riffles and bleach bottles under there...but ok.
When asked where our First Aid kit was....i looked at my husband like, DAMN! OMG! we are done for! I cant believe I totally forgot to get a 1st aid kit!! Thats it we failed!
"Show me a pair of scissors and a pair of tweezers." the home study worker said
So I frantically gather both of those things from my make up drawer..
holding both of them in my hand..
"There you go! You have a 1st aid kit!" he said while checking off the approved first aid kit check box.
"Do you have a car seat?"-he asked...
Oh yeah, its in the car! Want me to go get it to show you?
"No, thats ok i trust you."- he said.
Again, it wasn't until our awful experience was finished that me and my husband realized all of these warning signs.
So our home passes inspection and we are signing all our licensing paperwork and I see we were approved for THREE babies/children...
I whispered to my husband and pointed it out to him what the paper said and we both just looked at each other like...HUH??? How is that possible? But then again, just figured we were lucky.
Fast forward to after I told our social worker we were not able to take on the three little ones..
i immediately noticed a change in her attitude. Almost as if her quota was no longer being met because of our decision. And ill never forget crying on the phone to her and asking if we were going to look bad or if this was going to be held against us and she told me
"Well it might, the other social workers might not think you are ready to be parents."
My hearty completely broke in that moment. Looking back on it now, I know it was all apart of their manipulation to-pardon my french- but have us by the balls.
Id like to say that was the only time that we were "chosen to be parents" to more than 1 child which is what we agreed to but it wasn't.
Two months pass and I receive another phone call from our social worker saying, CONGRATS! You guys are selected to be the parents for a sibling set! a 3 year old and a 2 year old.
Again, with a little more frustration we reminded our social worker that we were not in the position to take on more than 1 child and our age range was 0-5 months old.
Fast forward to a week later and Im at work watching the news when I hear that our county we are adopting from- foster care system is being investigated because all these counts are being brought up of foster children being placed in homes and being neglected. Sadly, one child even passed away from being starved to death.
Sadly, I wouldn't put it passed the county to be negligent in such a way. I mean, look at all the red flags WE experienced?
So the waiting game continued for another 6 months, until April 2nd 2016 when I received the most beautiful phone call I have ever received.
I had just emailed my social worker that morning once I got to work, checking in and asking if anyone was showing interest in us as a family for placement when she told me "No, not right now."
5 hours later I'm sitting at my desk and my phone rings... its my social worker..I grab my phone and run outside to answer..something in my heart just knew this was it.
"Angelique?" she said
"Yeeess?" i replied
"I have some news. There is a little girl, she was born 2 days ago, she is a safe surrender baby. Perfectly healthy, half mexican half african american.." she began giving me details
then said the most beautiful statement I've ever heard...
"And we have selected you to be her mama, if you are willing."
All I wanted in that moment was her. I didn't know where she was or even what she looked like...but...I was hers and she was mine. I instantly felt completely different. My entire life in that moment had made sense. I remember not being able to catch my breath and crying what seemed like slow tears that you see in the movies.
My heart had physically been aching ever since I lost our quadruplets... but in that moment when I became her mom, there was no pain anymore.
So in two days we would make the drive up to Victorville, CA to the hospital where she was and take our baby girl home.
This was it, our family was now going to be complete. After all the unbearable heartache everything was finally going to make sense, our Happily Ever After was finally here and her name was
Violet Antoinette Robles.
I called my husband at work and could barley get a word out over all the tears. Of course after blowing up his phone 10 times cuz we all know husbands don't like to EVER answer their phones when its something important! haha
He finally answered and I was able to speak and utter the words
"We have a daughter!"
I could hear the smile through the phone and imagine his handsome smile just beaming!
I went back into work looking a hot ass mess but I couldn't care less! I shared the news with my co workers and everyone began to cry and get excited for us.
How does one sleep knowing that somewhere in the world your precious baby girl is waiting for you.. you don't! lol. The longest two days of my entire life let me tell you!
When the day finally arrived It was like a dream. Imagine the most exciting day of your life...now add Christmas morning, your birthday, winning the lottery, peace on earth, and being crowned Miss Universe! Thats what that morning felt like as we packed up the car to get ready to meet our daughter.
I can remember holding my husbands hand on the entire drive up to Victorville- which wasn't un common because we frequently hold hands in the car. But something felt so incredibly different...in an amazing way. It was almost like we both knew these were our last moments of it just being us. We would no longer be a family of two, table for two, just the two of us. We would now in a matter of hours become three. Three of US. The feeling was almost euphoric. The air had never smelt so fresh, the energy had never felt so peaceful, and most of all... our hearts had never felt just peace.
We arrived to the Children and Family Services Office car seat and diaper bag in tow ready to meet our daughter. But of course I was instantly brought back down out of the clouds on into the reality of the situation when we had to go over paperwork, have a presentation meeting with 3 other social workers, etc etc.
During a presentation you are given ALL the information that the county has about the child you are being presented with. Any information they have about the birth parents, the child/baby, the health of the child/baby, temperament, physical appearance, parents education I mean EVERYTHING.
Her name: Babygirl007 (seriously, the social worker at 3am that was called named her this SMH)
Birth Father: Mexican
Birth Mother: African American
Birth Mom is young, healthy, not ready for a baby due to the fact that the father is abusive, does drugs, doesn't want anything to do with the baby.
Birth Father is 30 years old but medically has some sort of reason why mental capacity is that of a 15 year old. Knows about the baby and doesn't want anything to do with her.
Baby 007 (smh) is perfectly healthy passing all newborn tests with flying colors and has ZERO DRUGS found in her system. (Normally with safe surrenders thats not the case)
Birth Mother never held the baby or had any physical contact with the baby and was discharged from the hospital already.
From the beginning we made it VERY VERY VEEEERRRRRRY clear that we wanted a LOW risk adoption. What that means is:
Some couples are fine with having the chance or risk of losing the baby at hand- either the parents are in rehabilitation and looking to come back into the babies life, or the situation is only temporary etc etc. But chances are HIGH RISK that the baby will be taken away and given back to its biological family... thats high risk.
LOW RISK is where its done deal, no one wants the baby, there will be no fight, no fuss, very low risk of anything going left.
Back to our presentation meeting...
So we are told that this baby...baby 007 (smh) was 99.99999999999999% LOW RISK. Meaning the ONLY thing we had to worry about was the mom changing her mind. In every case like this, the birth mother has 14 days to change her mind and get her baby back. After the 14 days tho, her right are terminated. So the birth mom and the baby have to wear this ID bracelet for 14 days, and after that you can cut it off and rest easy because that baby is YOURS.
This is something they DONT go over in your adoption classes. But I mean hey, we were being told that this Birth mom wants NOTHING to do with the baby, the dad wants NOTHING to do with the baby and its the perfect situation... so lets do this!
After presenting cllllll the information they had about Baby 007 (smh) and her birth parents they asked us if we needed some time to think about it...................... everyone stepped out of the room to give us some privacy as we discussed...
everyone left the room for no reason because we already had our minds made the funk up that this was our baby! lol... either way :)
So we signed the paper work, and she was ours! We drove a couple blocks away to the hospital to where she was and were escorted back to the room she was in.... and that was it.
We were hers and She was ours...
And They All Lived Happily Ever After...
Until 17 Days later.
Jessie James Decker-Mama Wrote You A Lullaby