|Photo by Amber Holritz|
Ivey is a perfectly healthy, happy girl. We are amazed every day by her strength and happy moments. She is smiling and cooing and "gabbing" up a storm.
Before I can go forward I need to start back where I dropped off on my last blog post. After we met Ivey - we went back to the hotel with our two fur babies in tow. We didn't know how long we would need to stay - all we knew is we were a family. We spent 9 LONG days in that hotel with two fur babies and a newborn. It was quite the adjustment. Ivey did great in the hotel - she was still in that newborn honeymoon phase - it was nice and quiet before the storm of home and all our visitors happened. We were lucky enough to have Rick and Susan of FAS and Amanda, Matt and Mills who told us about FAS - it was like we had family there. And luckily my mom, daddy bob and dad all made it over to birmingham to visit their new granddaughter.
|love at first sight|
|Grammy and Pop Pop meet Ivey|
|Pap meets Ivey|
I think the FUNNIEST story we have had to date is one late night Ivey was crying uncontrollably and we had fed her, changed her, burped her, etc WITH NO RELIEF. Ivey was crying, I was crying - Corey was pacing. Corey asked me to google inconsolable crying. To which I asked while trying to type. HOW DO YOU SPELL INCONSOLABLE?? This moment will be laughed at for years to come. We started getting the hang of it. At first I thought Corey was more maternal than me - he just had that knack. One morning I woke up and saw him strapping Ivey on, and putting leashes on Olive and Nellie and venturing out on a walk. I knew right then and there I was BLESSED. More than I could ever imagine.
|a moment I have always dreamed about|
We finally got out of there - after finally getting clearance from Alabama to leave the state and from Tennessee to come back in. We were able to meet with the judge and go ahead and get the "pat on the head" so we won't have to come back October 23rd when Ivey's adoption is final. We started out on the road and said our goodbyes to our amazing agency, our sweet friends the Leaches and the beautiful town that Ivey will always call "home."
We arrived home on June 21st to a crowd of friends and family. Our home was decorated and cleaned. It honestly took my breath away. Thank goodness my sweet friend Brittany of Moncrief Photography took photos of the day because honestly it was like a blur. Here is the link to the blog from Moncrief Photography - and Here is the video of that wonderful day.
Then it was just us in our home. So thankful Corey is home since he is just in school for now. Granted he is still super busy but it is great truly having a partner in this. Thankful the fur babies took to Ivey - they love their little sister and vice versa. We had visitor, after visitor, after visitor. We were so grateful but we were still in the adjustment phase and some days were just HARD. Some days it was hard to put on a happy face. The first few months honestly were the reason I didn't want a "baby" and wanted an older kid. I didn't think I could do it, I was emotional and was sick of crying. I felt bad because Ivey was a GREAT baby - but I felt like I had lost myself. I missed my work, I missed time with my husband, I missed time alone. I did a lot of soul searching and reaching out to friends via phone, instagram and facebook and in person - it was so nice to hear others had gone through the exact same thing. People don't tell you about this part. I had NO idea how emotional I would be. I thought that was just a hormonal thing and well I didn't give birth. I thought I would just have happy tears not overwhelming almost sad tears. People keep saying it all gets better around 3-4 months and they were right.
|Photo by Amber Holritz|
Here we are at 16 weeks and we are getting true genuine smiles and giggles. It already has gone so fast. We already look back and almost forget the days in the hotel. I almost, almost forget about the first few weeks when I would cry nonstop. It is still hard don't get me wrong - I am still excited for the time when we truly will interact and play with Ivey. I already know I am a better mom when I get a break. Corey and I make sure each of us get alone time and make sure to still go on dates with each other. We want to remember where this family started and want to make sure we nurture us along with our girl.
These first few months have been OVERWHELMING - we have been showered with love, gifts, meals, and prayers. Through it all we know we are blessed. I always thought people were crazy when they said it would all be worth the wait. I didn't want to hear it at the time - but today I know it is all true. All of this was to get to her. Ivey our gorgeous daughter who gives us a reason to smile everyday. She was made for us and to her birth mom we are FOREVER grateful for making a beautiful, healthy, happy girl. And to each of you thank you for loving our girl and us. Thanks for following along on our journey. God has blessed us. Our story is truly just beginning.......
Here is a wonderful blog post by Amber Holritz - most of the above photos are from Ivey's first photo shoot with Amber.