Posted by: perchancetodream | July 31, 2009

Baby Steps

I was both glad and dismayed to read the comments and emails from people who also found their online adoption courses to be completely useless.  It’s a shame that agencies can’t seem to find the midpoint – they either require that you read a U-haul full of books or they require the pointless academic exercise that we went through.

I’m a bit of a research hound and could easily amass a library of adoption and toddler books.  But as we’re still so far away from bringing a child home, I’m resisting.  I did buy this one though and so far I’m impressed.  It was what I’d hoped that our courses would be.

I also had an enlightening e-mail conversation with Earth Mother, our contact at the adoption placement agency.  Apparently we aren’t the only people complaining about our SW.  Seems like she might be overwhelmed by the Hague requirements or something.  At the very least I found out that some of her advise so far has been incorrect (such as her urging us to get our medicals first thing – apparently Bulgaria has it’s own requirements and we’re going to have to do this again for our dossier.  Lovely).  Earth Mother was also dismayed at the time it was taking SW to get anything done and apparently contacted her to “check in”. The next day, I got an email from SW requesting a date for our home visit.

So far, out of all the seemingly pointless forms and conversations we’ve had, I’ve more or less seen the purpose in them.  But the home visit….let me explain.  We live in a rental townhouse.  It’s lovely.  But not at all set up for a child.  We have a “creek” for runoff water behind our house – about 4 feet deep and stone.  With no barrier.  Our “bar” is a low shelf of a baker’s rack.  We still haven’t gotten around to really wrapping all of our electronic wires that dangle behind our open-backed office system.  Pretty much all our furniture has sharp edges.  We have 2 nice-sized bedrooms but one is being used as my office since I’d be working from home. We don’t have a medicine check so all our meds are in the open cabinet under the sink.

But our adoption is going to take 18-36 months from the time we file our dossier.  There is little to no chance that we’d be living here by then. And yes, we’re smart enough to make a list of what we’d need to change (that being said hubby – who should know better, having a younger sibling and a number of closely raised cousins – thinks that it’s okay with a toddler because you can tell them “no”.  My experiences babysitting for toddlers made me laugh at this.  I truly thought he was kidding.  Obviously there are some discussion in our future).  But it’s a rental.  And we won’t be living here by then.  I suspect I’m going to be repeating that line over and over on Wednesday when SW comes out and starts lecturing us on these things.

Over the next two days, we’ll be finishing the rest of our other commitments for the home study. Then it’s just hounding our near and dear friends to get their promised letters in.  I swear, I’ve never seen people stress out over writing things as I have with this.)

Our placing agency is urging me to officially file and start the dossier process but SW is such a flake that I feel like we need to get through next week first.  At the same time, Earth Mother assures me that we’re far enough in the process to “hold” a child, should one come along that we want to request.  This, of course, only works for special needs but some of the needs we’ve seen have been things that we’d consider.  Just not this week! 🙂

On another topic, I’ve been wrestling with how to turn this blog into a true adoption blog.  I’m still mostly found by people looking for IF experiences.  And I don’t want to delete or move those entries either.  I’m definitely due for a new look though and an updated blogroll and such.  I’d like to do this before the dossier is completed but I also know that I’ll have a lot more time after that point.

All in all, I set out to spend this year, getting the adoption show on the road and getting our finances in order and so far we’re succeeding at both.  I’m looking forward to a different list of 2010 goals though when hubby and I hope to do a little traveling and I have dreams of actually getting on top of my things to do list! 🙂

Speaking of which…the next thing on my pile of things to do is to write a check for the my final bill to the infertility clinic that shall remain nameless.  I’ve owed them for a while.  I can’t tell if my reluctance to pay is my passive-aggressive response to their utter lack of success in my treatments or if it’s the closing of a door.  I think it’s more the former than the latter but then, I do still have a bag of follistim at the back of my fridge.  September maybe????

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Responses

  1. I love reading all about this.

  2. Here from L&F. Unfortunately, I am not sure you’ll be able to convince your SW that the changes will be made (either in your current place or future place) before a child comes home. For our first homestudy visit, we actually had to have all of the electrical outlets covered, cabinets locked, and baby gates for our stairs. I thought it was totally dumb considering it would be a while before we got a match (domestic adoption) and then we’d have time to get things in order since infants can’t get into too much trouble given that they can’t move around. He told us it was required by the state that the house be ready. Luckily for us, it wasn’t a ton of trouble given we already had an older child and just needed to do some babyproofing. I hope your SW is able to work with you because given that you are in a rental, it sounds like a lot more work. Maybe you can do just the bare minimum (outlet covers, cabinet locks). Good luck.

  3. Hi,

    My homestudy experience (we live in NC) was the opposite of KLTTX’s … our SW said, “OK. I’m going to sit here and ask you various questions related to whether you’ve childproofed your home, and you’re going to say ‘No.’ [It was clear we were going to say no … maybe not as clear as in your case, but nonetheless] because, duh, you don’t have any children living in your house. And after you adopt, you’ll probably be home with an infant and I’ll come back for the post-placement visit and ask you the same questions and you’ll probably again say ‘No,’ because, duh, infants cannot get up and stick their fingers in electrical outlets. But I still have to ask you these questions.”

    Here’s hoping you have a SW with some sense (as we did), though it sounds like you may not. I guess the best I can suggest in that case it to be able to describe what your plans are for childproofing, etc., and/or to find out what has to be done before she’ll approve you.

  4. I hope your experience is closer to Alexicographer’s. My sister adopted 2 girls from China, and she was worried about having to redo homestudies because she had moved. She’s in the Air Force, and moved every 2-3 years. All I know is that she was stationed in Germany when her 2nd girl was placed, and they had a huge marble staircase with NO RAILING. But they passed anyway. Good luck, and I hope your SW is reasonable on the childproofing stuff.


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