The Ever Expanding Elastic on our Adoption Mindset

At our PRIDE course, one of the instructors mentioned her and her husband’s adoption mind frame started as a small elastic and then kept expanding the more they learned.  I’m not sure if that happens for most people trying to adopt or not but that was definitely the case for us.

The best way to show the changes in our journey is to show the emails we’ve sent out to our family at various points throughout.

December 2011

So today is Day 1 of our journey to get our little Smith (name as placeholder only)!  We want to document the process and be able to share it with Little Smith one day! We’re very excited.

Tonight we have our first interview with our adoption practitioner (a.k.a. social worker) so hopefully it will go well.  It’s weird not being able to prepare for the interview.

The next step is deciding on a country/state.  We have a meeting with a licensee on Tuesday to go over what countries he can adopt from and see if Florida’s a possibility.  If not, we’ll likely go with Bulgaria.  I have a Bulgarian restaurant already picked out in case we decide to go that way.

I am reading the best book right now about a family in Atlanta who had 4 kids of their own and then went on to adopt a 4 year old boy from Bulgaria and a 5, 8 and 11 year old from Ethiopia.  It’s such a great book and I can lend it to you if you want, although Chris wants to read it next.

Chris and I also decided last night that the max. age we’re going to put down on our application is 4 years old.  We’d prefer the youngest possible but are ok with going up to 4.

We’re also signed up for a 27-hour course we have to take as part of the process in February.  It teaches us all about parenting but also adoption issues that could arise.

January 2012

Well I guess quite a bit has happened since the last email. We have decided to pursue both Canadian domestic adoption (this means finding a birth mother who wants to make an adoption plan for her baby) and International adoption through Bulgaria. We are excited about both so we will see which one works out for us.

Last year there were only 70 private adoptions in Ontario and the process is quite different than International. You develop a profile (picture book with details about yourself) that you use to market yourselves and drop off to different agencies across Ontario. You can also join websites where birth mothers look for parents. In the end it’s always the birth mother/parents choosing the parents.  The other slightly scary thing is birth mothers have 28 days to change their mind after the baby’s born. So it’s a risk but we are willing to take it.

Next weekend we start our PRIDE training which is a 27 mandatory course on parenting and adoption. Chris is really hoping there is not a lot of role playing haha. I have a feeling there will be.

 As for our home study, we just received good news.  We had our 2nd interview tonight and found out there’s only one more interview which will be combined with our home safety check (baby proofing our house in other words – anyone want to test it out with their kids ;-).  So as of Feb. 15th, we will be done everything except possibly some of our paperwork.  I have to say the house study was not nearly as invasive as I thought it would be.  Tonight’s interview was kinda fun – we got to talk about how we met, what we like about each other and what activities we enjoy.  The next interview will be about our parenting ideas and styles (which our training will prepare us for).
  
The paperwork’s the fun part (sarcasm of course).   We get to get police clearances, RCMP clearances, Children’s Aid Society clearances for every town/city we’ve lived in for more than 3 months once we turned 18, financial statements, proof of insurance (house, car and life), letters of employment, Marvin’s (dog) license and vaccination forms, and medical forms. Oh and I also have to get police clearance from Peru as I lived there for more than 6 months. Fun times!! We have almost everything though which is great.

We need to get our home study approved by the Government of Ontario and then we can finalize our applications for adoption.  Then we start accepting invitations for socializing in order to keep very busy :-)!!!   

March 8, 2012

Hello all, 

Wanted to send a quick update to let you know we’re done our home study and were recommended by our adoption practitioner to adopt a child.  It’s a great relief knowing that’s done but now comes the hard part – the wait! 

Our home study goes to the Ministry for approval and is then sent off to Bulgaria.  On the adopting a newborn within Canada side, we are good to start marketing ourselves out there and marketing we are!  We have a profile posted on a website that enables expectant parents to find prospective parents and we are also registering with a few adoption agencies across Ontario.  To register, we need to go meet someone from the agency in person so they can get to know us and then give them a copy of our ‘profile’ – a book demonstrating who we are as a couple.   Once this is done, it’s suggested we touch base with them every now and then so that if and when a mother comes to them looking for prospective adoptive parents, our profile gets presented to her.  Good thing we are in marketing and sales haha!

If you know of anyone in the adoption field or ever hear of anyone looking, please pass our info along.  It’s amazing how many matches are done through word of mouth J.

We’ll keep you posted but likely nothing will happen for at least a year. 

November 2012

All we want for Christmas is a child.  That’s not too much to ask for, is it? 😛  On the other hand, this could be our last Christmas without kids – yikes!

It’s been a while so thought I would send out a note to give you an update on our rollercoaster ride, *cough* I mean adoption journey.  November is also adoption awareness month.  Well Chris and I have come full circle on our adoption views from a year ago and are now pursuing public adoption in Canada.  Public adoption is adoption through the Children’s Aid Society for children who have been placed as Crown Wards of the Government.  There are thousands of children available for adoption in Ontario, with approx. 1/3 of them between 13-18.  We’re willing to go as high as 6 years old and would accept a sibling group of 2.  We’re keeping all avenues open, Bulgaria, private adoption of a newborn and public and would be ecstatic for any of those avenues to complete our family.

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2 comments

  1. I think it is so great to share your story. I am sure it will help others. Obviously our journeys are very different, but I have learned that sharing our daughter’s cancer story has helped others. Life is a very strange thing, isn’t it. I always said I never wanted children. Then, Bill and I waited 6 years after getting married to decide to have kids. Then, we lost a baby, then when I was pregnant with Olivia it was very touch and go. Then we have Abby…and then almost lost her to cancer…and we still don’t know what the future holds for her. I’ve learned to go day by day, make the best decisions that allow you to sleep at night, have no regrets and be the strongest advocate you can be! We wish you guys all the best and look forward to hearing about your journey.

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