Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Hurry up and wait

Hurry up and wait. That's how I am feeling about the adoption process currently. So many friends, family, and acquaintances have excitedly asked me for an update on our process, and I wish I had something exciting to share, but I don't just yet!

We had expected to have our home study approved on June 8th when they came for our final home visit. But because another state that we lived in within the last 5 years required a separate release form for our background check, we had to sign that that day and we are still awaiting our background checks to clear before we can be approved. The most frustrating part is that we have literally nothing to check!

Thankfully, our case manager is very sweet and has sent us a few referrals to look over as we are awaiting licensure.  We are looking to adopt from foster care which means that the children we are considering have already had their parental rights terminated. In other words, we are not fostering them while they work toward reunification with their family, we are strictly adopting. When our case manager asked if we were interested in a concurrent placement - or a foster to adopt scenario - we did say that we would consider it, but that we were leaning heavily in the other direction. 

Of the 6 referrals she sent, five were adoption oriented and one was a concurrent placement.  The latter was sent more as an FYI since the format of information is a little different and our case manager wanted us to see what the differences were.

One of our main objectives is to keep our oldest biological child the oldest child overall.  We are going to be licensed for a sibling set of 2-3 with the oldest being 8 years old or younger. Of the 5 adoption referrals that were sent, two were sibling sets of 2, two were sibling sets of 3, and one was a set of 4. 

The set of four was again sent as more of an FYI and was definitely the most heart-wrenching to read.

If you allow yourself to enter into their situation while reading - 

you see past the "is a harm to them self" 
and see that they haven't been shown their self-worth; 

you read "acts like a mother hen" 
and know that they have always been responsible to care for their younger siblings; 

you know that the reason they "rarely seek comfort in times of distress" 
is because they never found it when they did; 

and when you read that the four year old child has already been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and "worries about leaving his bedroom every morning without permission", 
you want to hunt down the person who instilled such fear in their baby and teach them a thing or two.

This set of four was out of almost every parameter we have set, so they were not a good match with our family. But thankfully, they have a match in process!

Of the four remaining referrals of sibling sets of 2-3 kiddos, three had kiddos older than our oldest, and one was within our parameters for age.

The very hardest part of this whole process (outside of waiting!) is feeling like you could justify adopting every single referral you receive! You read "these children would do best in a home where they are the only children", yet somehow manage to find a way that your four biological children would somehow still fit into that mix! You see that they are older than your oldest biological child - outside the parameter you have specifically set because of many conversations with adoptive families, perspectives from adoptees, and a plethora of best practices that have come out from studies, podcasts, articles, etc. - and still you daydream about bringing them home!

All that to say that until our home study is approved, our hands are tied, but we are hoping to find out more about the one set that was in our parameters and any others that may pop up on our radar once our profile goes live!

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