I received this card the other day, just in time for Mother’s Day. For most people Mother’s Day means brunch and flowers and merriment. And that plays into my day too as I celebrate my mom and my sister (who’s a mom). But Mother’s Day is also bittersweet for me. Because I’ve always, always, as long as I can remember, wanted to be a mom. Every year since I turned 30 and the Clomid didn’t work for us I’ve sort of dreaded this day. But there was always a glimmer of hope for us to become parents so each Mother’s Day I get up and get dressed up and join my mom and my sisters and we spend the day together.
But today is different. Today my mom is out of town helping my youngest sister move. So Mother’s Day has a different sort of feel. But mostly today is different because my glimmer of hope is almost faded out. I’m 45 now and still childless. But not because we didn’t try, that’s for sure. We tried international adoption (2 different countries) and that didn’t work out for various reasons. Then we were matched up by a friend with a birthmother who, after a few months, changed her mind. We took a year off after that, to heal. Then we joined a domestic foster to adopt program. Our social worker told us “Give me a year and I’ll have you matched with a child.” EIGHT years later we still didn’t have a match. We came close a few times. Last year we even drove 8 hours to Northern Virginia to be interviewed for a child who ultimately went to another family. Then in December of last year our home study expired again and would require more money, more time, more paperwork, more effort. And by then CSP was worn out. He was over it. I was tired too, but I always finish what I start so I was willing to go through it all again. But I can’t be a married single parent. I can’t do it alone. So we let our home study expire. And my heart broke into a thousand little pieces.
I was watching a tv show the other day where a lady (we’ll call Susie) was having twins via surrogate after 8 miscarriages and 13 failed IVF trials. She was talking with another lady (we’ll call Karen) who was 35 and unmarried with no prospects and was considering freezing her eggs. Susie told Karen “If you want to be a mom, you’ll be a mom, whether it’s through biology or adoption, you’ll find a way.” That really hit home because I thought when my body failed me and I had to have a hysterectomy, that I’d found my way- through adoption. But now I don’t know anymore. I don’t know if I’ll ever be a mom. I don’t know what the future holds. I don’t know what God’s plan is for me. I do know that my heart hurts. That some days I feel useless, like my life doesn’t have much purpose or direction if I can’t be a mom. That I’ll end up all alone, forgotten in some nursing home somewhere when I’m old. So when my dear friend sent that thoughtful and sweet card that reminds me that I AM strong, brave, beautiful, cared about, and loved, it was just what I needed! I have faith and friends and family who love me and my story isn’t over.
Periodically people ask about how our adoption is going. Yep, we’re still at it! We still submit profiles of children to our social worker every couple of weeks and she submits our home study to their social worker. But we haven’t been matched yet. This is really frustrating for us. We feel like we are a perfect match for these kids but who knows what’s keeping us from being matched. One thing that breaks my heart is that when I’m browsing the profiles and find one that says they prefer to have a home with a single mother. What has happened to that poor child that they DON’T want a father?? We can only imagine.
We’re still having quarterly visits with our social worker. And we’re keeping our home study current. In fact, we have CPR coming up again soon. So please keep us in your prayers. We’re still chugging along, hoping and praying that someday soon we will finally complete our little family.
Don’t get all excited folks, there’s no breaking news. I just wanted to let you all know where we stand right now with the adoption.
We are still approved for adoption by the state of NC. Each month I log on to the websites with photo listings of available children (like http://www.adoptuskids.org) and browse the children listed. Then I choose some kids who would fit with our family and submit their profiles to our social worker so she can submit our home study to the children’s social workers. Then we wait for the children’s social workers to approve us or not. We don’t hear if we are not approved. It’s a long process. It’s frustrating too because from month to month I see kids on the sites that we’ve submitted for. While we wait we go to continuing education classes to keep our foster care license current. Then we start all over the next month.
Here’s what will happen when we are finally approved: we will start visitation with the child(ren). Their social worker will determine how many visits we’ll need to complete. Then, once everyone is comfortable with each other we will be able to bring them home! 6 months or so later the adoption will be final.
So that’s it. That’s what’s going on with us and our never-ending adoption story!
As you know we submitted our home study for 3 little girls at the end of December. At this time we have not heard back about any of them. A dear friend of ours who’s been through this process said that this could happen. I just did an online search and one of them (the one with THAT name), is now on hold. Since no one has contacted us, I’m most likely correct in assuming she’s not on hold for us. So it’s back to the search I go. I just sent our social worker profiles on 4 little girls. She will submit our home study for them next week and we’ll start the waiting game again!
I’m so excited to tell you that I’ve found 3 little girls that we’ve submitted our home study for! I combed the websites looking for a sibling group of 2 girls, or a boy and a girl but no such luck. But I did find 3 single girls. One is in the south. Not sure of exact age. One is in Mid West, she’s 9. She’s super cute. Then the last one is 8 in the NorthEast. As soon as I saw her and read her profile I felt an immediate connection.
So I emailed our social worker and gave her the links to the girls and asked for her to submit our home study to those girls’ social workers. Not sure how long it will take from here. We have to be approved by the girls’ social worker, then we’d start the visits. The number of visits to be determined by the girls’ soc worker. CSP is ALL about having an only child. So this could be one of those things like they say “You make plans and God laughs”. We could end up with just one after all! We can’t have more than 1 at the same time unless they are siblings. So if one comes home then we’d have to wait a year and start the process over again. That’s something I don’t think CSP would be too keen on doing. I barely got him through the process this time around!
So fingers crossed we will hear something soon from our social worker!!! SO excited! I’m obsessed!
We are all finished with our adoption work! No more paperwork. No more deadlines. No more inspections and scrutiny. No more digging for records. WHEW. We’ve been working on this for so long I almost don’t know what to do with myself now! Well, yes I do. That would be prepare for the arrival of the kidlets!!! We’re asking for 2 girls ages 0-8. We are so excited! We’re hoping to have them home by summer. All depends on how many children are available. We could be parents in a month or a year. It’s finally feeling so real! We’ve been “that couple who’s adopting” for SO long, and soon we’ll be “that couple who adopted those beautiful children”. Squeeee!!!
CSP & I have been doing a lot of thinking and we’ve come to a decision. It pains me to say this but we won’t be posting any pictures of our kids on Facebook. We have some friends who’ve gone the same route we are traveling to adopt their kids and they’ve had to remove all the pics and info of their kids from all social media. Some of the bio family hunted them down post adoption. We don’t want to end up in a similar situation. So we’ve decided to not publish their little faces or names on the interwebs. This is hard for me as I use the internet and social media to keep in touch with so many friends and family. But this is the right choice to protect our kids. Instead of using social media to update friends and family on our kidlets’ adventures we will be relying on good old fashioned email. Please send me your email even if you think I don’t have it if you’d like to be included in email updates.
Lately a couple people have said to me that they are amazed I’m able to stay so positive with all the ups and downs and hoops this adoption journey has brought me through. It isn’t every day that I’m super bubbles and butterflies positive. There have even been times when I’ve questioned whether we should go forward. (we’re not getting younger, maybe this just isn’t meant to be, etc). But overall I try my hardest to stay positive because I really, truly, believe that this is meant to be. I’ve always thought that my children were going to be special. It’s just taking an awfully long time for them to get home. Also, a negative attitude won’t change the outcome or the process, so why be all grumpy, ho hum about it? I stay positive because I choose to. I choose it every day. Even on the days that aren’t looking too sunny. I believe your attitude is hugely important and I choose to keep mine positive. I’d rather tell my kids that I waited for them with a smile on my face.
Yes, we’re still adopting. Yes, it’s been a looooong time. 10 years actually since we started trying to have a baby. BUT we’re closer than ever! Our agency has come up with some more classes we have to take (9 this month), but then after that we can be matched. Once the classes are completed we will be able to send our home study to social workers in charge of the kids we pick. We are earmarked for a sibling set of 2 ages 0-8. Once the kids’ social worker receives our home study then they have to approve it. Once approved then we can begin visiting the child(ren). If all parties involved feel like it is a good match then we’ll be able to bring the kidlets home! In the mean time the holiday season is upon us so that will make time go by a little faster and make the wait not so hard.
This set of classes is very interesting. What’s also interesting is the people watching in class. We’ve already taken a similar set of classes so nothing surprises us, but you should see the widening of the eyes of the other people in there when our moderators talk about certain behaviors we may encounter since we’re adopting foster kids. 3 year old kids that will curse you out. Kids that smear feces. Sexually active children. It’s all very eye opening to say the least.
We are so excited that we are finally this close. We can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel. We can’t wait to start celebrating family day!