So there have been many questions about where we are in the process. And about the process itself. Here is a look at what happens.
1. You take classes on how to be a parent to a special needs child. (Every child over infant age is considered special needs no matter what.)
2. You wait and fill out paper work.
3. You wait and have a home study.
4. You wait and pass/fail your home study.
5. If you pass your home study you wait some more. (Are you catching on to a theme here?)
6. You wait and meet some children.
7.-10. You wait
11. You find a match and it is "the one".
12. You begin visits and move towards permanency.
13. Congrats!!! You are a family!!!!
Now there are deviations in this. Failed adoptions, evil social workers, etc. But if all goes "normally" these are the steps that take place. We are on step 2 right now. If all goes well by the end of August we will have the paperwork turned in and be on the road to more waiting. Not what I wanted. I dreamed of finding my second child over the summer so we had bonding time and time to decided on education, care, and all that good stuff. At the rate we are moving it will probably be a closer to Christmas sort of thing. Some one once told me that it is a broken system, but it is the only system we have. It makes me sad that it takes so long and the children get the short end of the stick. They wait and dream of a family that may never come for them. All because of the stupid red tape.
So instead of loosing my mind I plan on keeping very busy while this goes on. The problem when I was waiting for our first child was that I kept on getting undone at every little corner that didn't go as planned. I became cranky and irritable and frustrated. I kept hounding our agency and I am sure they got tired of me even though they said they didn't. I cried and cried.
On that road to discovery that I need to have more faith and patience and not harass the agency I decided to combat the waiting and worrying by being productive. Here is my to do list:
1. Focus on what I have. I have a husband, son, and insane rabbits who need my attention. I also need to prepare Marvin for the fact that he is no longer going to be the only child in the family. He is excited about a sibling, but he also has to learn many things, like sharing mom and dad.
2. I am starting my second year at an awesome school! I love it. My first year went well, but there is room for improvement. I am my hardest critic and know many areas that I can better myself in.
3. I am going back to school. Yep, I am a glutton for punishment. Plus I have put it off long enough. My goal is a Masters Degree in Special Education with emphasis on the preschool age group. I have a long way to go, but I am confident that it can be done. One of my good friends got hers and it took her 11 years. I am aiming for a little less that that.
I am also taking action and stalking adoption websites. In doing this I make contact with social workers early on in the game. I let them know where I am in the process and most are willing to talk with you and let you know if there is a chance the child will be available when you are done. I am also looking at "unadoptables". That is a class of children who are autistic, have cerebral palsy, metal retardation, you know children who people look at and say "Well we really would consider that, but still have unrealistic fantasies about this perfect child who will pop into our lives, so no dice." Now mind you, not all people say that, but most do. What I have come to realize is that those are just labels. They do NOT define who a child is or what they can become with a family who will love and support you no matter what. I have seen so many of these children blossom once they are home for good.
So for now I will be content and busy while I wait. I will keep people posted and enjoy what I have and look forward to the day we add to our family!