We’re coming up on the one year anniversary of one of the most important days of my life. On October 8th, 2014, at 10:something in the morning, I got the news. After nearly two years of paper work, aggravation and lots of disappointment along the way, there had finally been movement in the courts in India. That was the day I legally became a mom!
I was out on a news story at the time. I was reporting on the aftermath of a hostage situation that unfolded earlier that morning. Serious stuff. It was about 15 minutes before my hit and while waiting to go on air, I glanced at my personal phone and checked my email.
It said: “Good news, Susan. The courts have approved your adoption.” It was from the head of an orphanage in Mumbai where my daughter was housed. His brief, profound words were followed by some legal jargon that my now swirling brain could not comprehend. All I could think about was letting it sink in – – I was finally a mom!!! No, I was finally HER mom; the little girl I had fallen in love with eight months earlier through pictures and occasional brief updates.
This was the news I had been waiting to hear for so long. I couldn’t contain myself. I called my parents, my sister and sent a quick group email update to my close, supportive friends and relatives who had been keeping me sane through all the unexpected twists and turns of my adoption journey.
Within minutes, all the news crews around us, who were also preparing for midday live shots, were buzzing with excitement, as well. Colleagues were coming up to congratulate me with tears in their eyes. One photographer I barely knew at a competing station approached and said, “I don’t know you, but I just heard the news and I’m so happy for you.”
It was a moment I want to preserve in my memory forever.
I didn’t know this at the time, but it would still be another long, three months before I was finally allowed to book travel to India to pick her up and take her home. The details still had to be ironed out, but MY ADOPTION WAS APPROVED!
I couldn’t keep the giant smile off my face through mic and video checks. Two minutes to air. My coworkers in the control room and transmission were in my earpiece, congratulating me as well. Word travels fast. My eyes were welling with happy tears.
You probably don’t think about reporters’ personal lives when they stoically deliver the news. Sometimes, it’s the biggest challenge to push everything aside and put on an appropriate face. Maybe the person you see on camera is quietly dealing with a loss, sickness or personal demons. Or, maybe they’ve just received the best news possible.
OK, time to get serious. Focus on the story here. Gotta go on the air…and then, I could return to my ecstatic state and continue celebrating this life-changing day.
This anniversary has prompted me to start a blog in the hopes of helping others, particularly other single career gals who may fear they missed the boat on having a family. I’m finally ready to share the journey of finding my daughter and my 180 degree life transition, as I’m still adapting to balancing a demanding job and motherhood in suburbia after long-time, single life in the city.
More to come….