Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Homestudy, check...application in, check...excited, check!

Wow! A TON has happened since my last post. To start, we really sealed the deal with our decisions. We determined that WACAP was the agency for us, China was the country for us, and Catholic Charities was the homestudy provider for us. Not to mention, we came to a conclusion on which special needs we are willing to accept since we are adopting a waiting child.

This past Monday (12/14/09) we met with Geralyn Ryan from Catholic Charities. She is the social workers we have decided to use. It was very nerve-racking since her stamp of approval is such a huge deal. Anyway, she put us at ease (or should I say, "put ME at ease") right away. She was very kind and knowledgeable. She gave us a wonderful stack of papers to begin filling out. The stack includes things we need to gather like our marriage certificate, birth certificates, and pet vaccinations. It also includes documents to fill out all about us and our family as well as the info to get our background screenings done. Don't worry, we'll pass those without a problem! I came home right away and started plugging away at them. We also scheduled our second meeting which will be January 6th in which Geralyn will meet with each of us separately. After that she'll visit our home. I actually think we can have this part done by the end of February and begin to work on our dossier for China (if they've approved us by then). Once the dossier is complete, we wait! Hopefully within a reasonable time frame we'll be matched with a child and then will travel 3-5 months later to get her.

Yesterday I sent our WACAP application. Actually, I called and asked if it could be faxed since they are in Washington and I'm impatient. They said "yes" so now I'm just waiting to hear back from them. I spoke to Lieba yesterday and she said we'll have to fill out a pre-approval packet for China to determine that they'll qualify us. Some of the documents may be redundant from the homestudy so I'm waiting to find out what that will include before I do things like the background check. The fact that China has to pre-approve us is a little scary, even though I'm confident we'll be approved.

Off of the infertility roller coaster and on to the adoption roller coaster I guess. The good news is I know how this ride ends! :)

Jason asked over the weekend if we can name our little girl whatever we want. We still love the name Sophie so that may end up being the one we use. However, we'll be fortunate in that we'll see her face before we have to solidify a name. I guess that's one benefit we have with this process. We'll be looking at her picture for several months before we travel to pick her up.

On that note, I had my first adoption dream Monday evening. I dreamed that we arrived in China to meet our daughter and that she was beautiful. Jason took her in his arms. Next, my mom (played by my old next door neighbor) picked up the baby second. When I reached for her my "mom" said "she's my granddaughter, I'm holding her." When I replied "well I haven't held her yet and we're just meeting" the grandma backed away with her so I KICKED HER! I guess I'm already protective over what is so far a non-existent child. Watch out people!!! LOL

Well, to be continued... Time for me to go to bed and see what wild dream I have tonight!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The first day...

WOW! What an exciting, yet very nerve-racking day! This morning Jason and I met with an adoption attorney to gather basic information about adoption. We explained our knowledge and concerns about both domestic and international adoption. Interestingly enough, most of my misguided concerns weren't misguided at all. As suspected, sometimes domestic adoption does end with a birth mother changing her mind. That is so scary! After all we've gone through, I can't imagine experiencing another loss. In the end, we weighed out every pro and con we could think of for both. We are leaning towards international but are going to do our homework with that first, and are not ruling out domestic.

I placed phone calls with two agencies. First was Spence-Chapin, the agency that would handle a Korean adoption. I left a message. Next was WACAP, the agency we'd likely use for China and the same agency Lieba used. They both returned my call and I was able to speak with Joan from WACAP. She was able to inform me that the waiting child program would take about a year to place a child. This seems very reasonable, and probably unlikely. I'd love to have wishful thinking but our experience has proven one thing... we're always the exception! So, I'm planning on 2 years! Joan also said that most waiting children will be boys. You know what? If preschool has taught me anything, it's YOU GET WHAT YOU GET AND YOU DON'T GET UPSET. I will love the child that finds me, NO MATTER WHAT. Why would this be any different than becoming pregnant without choosing my childs needs or gender? So.... here we go!

I think at this point I'm more concerned about what other people are going to think about our choice and if we might be judged. I remember, pre-infertility, thinking "why do people adopt internationally when there are so many children here that need homes." This was very naive of me. Someone whose missed the opportunity of carrying a child doesn't necessarily want to adopt a 7 year-old. I hope we don't face too much resistance.

Regardless, the buzz is in the air and is very exciting. It's no longer IF, it's WHEN! Today is the first day of the rest of our lives...