Posted by: perchancetodream | January 8, 2010

Winter Warmth and the Gift of Maybe

We were meant to have a snow storm yesterday – a blizzard by Nashville standards – 4 whole inches.  Instead we got about a 1/2 inch and a whole lot of bitter cold.  A Michigander by birth, I have to admit to a love of snow – particularly when I’m inside and warm and looking out at it.

Yesterday’s dusting may not have been much but it served to add a pretty coating to the view from my home office. And it couldn’t have happened on a better day.  The good/bad about telecommuting is that while I consistently check and answer work emails on weekends and late at night (since my work and home computers are one and the same), there are also days when that extra work pays off, while I’m in waiting mode for people to answer my emails and provide me with work, and I can clear other things off my plate while still being available if needed.  Any yesterday was such a day.

The task that needed attending to was dossier preparation.  I’d shied away from it in fear of the overwhelming amount of detail and focus it was going to take and, honestly, I was a little nervous that I’d find something crucial that we’d overlooked doing.  Instead it went fairly smoothly.  With the exception of the xeroxing of our 2008 taxes (and associated explanation about how I’d spent half the year in a lower-paid job and hubby had been out of work for much of 2007 due to our move) and our family photo compilation (which thankfully falls to hubby because I DO find this one overwhelming), we’re darned near done.

Hubby and I both sent our respective doctors our medical forms for them to print, sign, and notarize. In hubby’s case, this is a smooth and flawless process as he’s seeing a resident at the university he works for. His letter should be ready today.

In my infinite wisdom however, I’d decided that I wanted a “real” doctor and am going to a woman who’s practice would not have been out of place on Little House on the Prairie.  Big mistake.  But one I can’t change until our dossier is filed because she’s named in our home study as my doctor of record.  Great.  I sent the letter off by email and got a prompt response from her new administrator (the entire office staff has changed since I was last there in July) that she didn’t think it would be a problem and to call back on Monday.  Now I’ve got a bit of a bad feeling about this because some of the things that my doctor needs to attest that I’m clear of she hasn’t tested me for. I could have given the form to my highly efficient Gyn but she isn’t listed in the home study….great… we’re still waiting for our FBI letter(s) though, I guess we have a “little” time to work with. I just wish we didn’t need it.

The other thing we tackled was the special needs list.  When we applied with our agency we filled out a very simplistic version of this.  This was was 6 pages long and necessitated a bit of time with Dr. Google to find out what these illnesses actually were and what affect they’d have on a child as they grew.  Some of the special needs were easy for use to say “no” to.  We would not be good parents to a mentally handicapped child.  There is no doubt in either of our minds about that.  But what level of physical disability would we be good parents for? It’s a difficult question to answer.  I know very few people with physically disabled kids.  We’ve certainly never seen these issues play out in a day to day way. Yes every “no” made me feel like we were missing out on a potentially wonderful child who would be perfect for us.

We both erred towards acceptance. Surprisingly, it was easier for us to make determinations on issues like clubbed feet, children whose mothers were HIV positive, sexual organ malformations, and albinism than it was on issues like deafness and missing limbs.  The last two issues fall straight into our most cherished loves: music (me) and hiking (hubby).  I’ve seen children with missing limbs climbing rock walls with prosthetics. I’ve seen children enjoy rhythms and sounds with implants.  But what if the child referred to us was not a child who tackled their issues in such a way?  Did we want to take that chance?

We fell back on the form’s cop-out answer “maybe”.  It will depend on the child.  On their personality and the level of spunk in their character.  I keep thinking that biological parents don’t get to make these types of choices. But the voice inside my head always reminds me that adopted children are already coming with issues purely from the experience of being raised in an orphanage and by moving to a country where they don’t know the language and where nothing is familiar.  If being able to choose the type of child that we can be the best parents for is part of this process than so be it.  Perhaps it is the “gift” of the adoption process.

In the meantime, we’ll get our doctors sorted out, wait for the FBI to write us, and watch our 1/2 inch of snow melt. Who knows how many winters there are left before we become a family of 3 (or 4).



  1. Those are really tough questions to even think about, but I”m glad to hear that you’re making progress on all the forms.

  2. What an amazingly difficult series of questions to tackle. So much soul-searching is involved. Glad to hear that you’re moving forward!

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