Waiting for Grace
"Any little girls from India yet?"
"No. I'm sorry. I really don't think we are going to be able to find you a little girl. India would rather place a boy in a home that already has a girl. They feel a second girl will not be loved and cared for, and so if you already have a girl they would rather you adopt a boy. Girls just are not valued as highly in India, so they do not understand why you want another girl in your family."
Our first child, Lauren Elizabeth, was born to us. My husband and I had always planned on adopting a child after having a child through birth, but we enjoyed the creation and birth of Lauren so much, we got pregnant again when she was just one and a half years old. We decided adoption could wait.
Then one night I had a dream that a tiny fetus was clinging to the outside of my body. It looked like a skinned cat, but I knew it to be the body of an unborn child. It tried to shimmy up my chest and nestle its wet head under my chin.
Then a large hand reached down and began to pull the child off me. The baby only clung tighter to me and began to cry. I felt its fright and said, "No!"
The hand was part of something that spoke to me in a powerful voice, neither feminine nor masculine. "This isn't the way," it boomed as it continued to pull the fetus off me. The tiny creature cried and cried, and I screamed out even louder, "No! Don't take my baby!"
The hand from above finally managed to get the fetus's tightly clinging hands and feet off me and was taking it away. "This isn't the way," it repeated, and then, "You'll get her back."
I awoke the next morning and knew I had lost the baby inside. By noon I was bleeding. I remembered the words "You'll get her back." But when? And how?
A few months later, I saw an ad in the paper for an informational meeting on adoption. My husband and I didn't have to discuss it. We had always known this was something we would pursue someday, and we felt maybe now was the time to do it.
A year later, I listened to Shivani, our Indian counselor, as she explained once again why the Indian people did not want my husband and me to have a girl. Shivani ended her dissertation on Indian culture by mentioning, "Well, I do have a file on my desk about a little girl, but she has special needs, and I feel her health is not good, and..."
"Tell me about her," I said, feeling my heart quicken.
"She was born at 27 weeks' gestation, weighing only two and a half pounds, but it says she was able to maintain her own temperature after only a few days. The nurses did not expect a live birth after the two-day labor. When she was delivered, the nurses named her Kripa, which means "grace of God" in Hindu. She has hepatitis B and is anemic."
"What do we do if we are interested in adopting her?"
"I'll send you the file; please look it over carefully. Do not make a hasty decision. Have a doctor look at her medical records and then let me know. Meantime, I will let you know if anything else opens up."
Loving energy was traveling halfway around the world, and no doubt Kripa felt it.
Days later, I tore open the envelope and looked at the picture of tiny Kripa: eyes closed, thin arm raised over her head, her face looked pale in comparison with the wheat color of her arms. Her eyes were sunken, and her entire being was thin and frail. She looked like a very sick child, when I look back at the picture now. But at that moment, she was the most beautiful angel I had seen since the birth of Lauren, as perfect as any child, through a mother's eyes. I began to cry, and then noticed her date of birth: April 15, 1994. Our daughter Lauren was born on April 16, two years earlier. What more confirmation did I need?
The day after we asked Shivani to start the paperwork to bring Kripa home, she called us with great news. The hepatitis B had cleared, much sooner than expected. I knew why! In the last few days, many family and friends had begun to pray for her. Loving energy was traveling halfway around the world, and no doubt Kripa felt it.
Our daughter, Lauren, was as anxious as her parents were to get her little sister home. She talked constantly about "when my little sister comes, we'll do such and such" and "when my little sister gets here, then we'll live happily ever after." One day she asked, "Mommy, could we go get a doll that looks like my little sister and pretend it is her? We could put her to bed at night and dress her in the morning. Could we, please?"
It felt like a great idea. We found a lovely dark-skinned doll with long, silky black hair and we named her Grace, which was what we had decided to rename Kripa. We brought the doll home and put her in the high chair at dinnertime. We dressed her in pajamas and tucked her in the crib at nighttime. We hugged and kissed her as if she were real, and it made us all feel just a little bit better. I think that perhaps we managed to give loving energy to Kripa through the use of that doll. It also allowed us to believe and imagine it all coming true, while waiting day after day for some news.
Occasionally we received new pictures. I did not rejoice at the sights of the orphanage, but only longed for her to be in my arms. Each day I felt my love for her growing and the bond between mother and daughter becoming more alive. Staring at the pictures of my child in a crowded orphanage, through the metal bars of a crib with peeling paint, so far away, made my heart ache. I meditated each night on her and felt myself float up out of our bedroom and then travel to her in her crib. Some nights when I "visited" her in her crib, I saw other angels there with me. We would circle above her bed and send healing light to her. I felt close to her and longed to feel her physical presence when I awakened.
The day finally came to meet Grace at the airport. I waited nervously with my family behind the rope at the international terminal. Then the doors opened and two flight attendants came into the waiting area. They called out, "Where are the parents? Who is the mother?" and I waved my hand in the air. They began exclaiming loudly as they came toward us: me, my husband, my mother, my stepfather, and Lauren.
"Oh! She is so wonderful! She smiled the whole time! She is just a doll!" Their eyes twinkled as they told me about my daughter. They were holding her only moments before; I wanted to reach out and touch them to feel her energy.
They told us that the escort and Kripa were delayed with the paperwork, but they assured us that she would be cleared soon. We all stood and stared at the doors. As I stood there listening to their words of delight, I felt my milk come in. I folded my arms over my breasts and excused myself to go to the restroom.
I hurried down the hall, not wanting to miss my baby's entrance into this world. I went in the bathroom to see if what I thought I felt was real. Sure enough, I hadn't even held her yet, and my milk was there! My body knew my baby was near!
I ran back to the ropes to wait with everyone, and the doors opened. In came the escort, beaming and holding her up close to his face, and she looked out on the crowd now gathered to watch this first-time family homecoming. It was a tearful event for everyone. I barely remember it, as it all blurred together so joyfully. I know that Grace was frightened and began to cry. I know I began to cry, too; so did my mother and my husband, and perhaps a few people I don't even know.
Somehow my husband and I managed to sign a lot more papers and then suddenly, everyone left and we went home. Just like that, we were together.
Upon reviewing my journals and Grace's paperwork, I discovered that she was conceived in the same month that my miscarriage had occurred. Without a doubt I know that, just as the voice had said to me, we "found the way" and "she came back to stay."
She is Amazing Grace.
JuliAnna is a freelance writer for metaphysical magazines and newspapers. She is also a practicing Reiki Master, and offers spiritual guidance and intuitive counseling. You may reach JuliAnna at (253) 759-5424.