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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Lets end the wait!

I know many parents waiting to adopt. The adoption process can be very stressful, and grueling with unexpected turns of events. Sadly a "match" doesn't mean there will be an official adoption placement. In fact even after placement during those six pre-placement months before the final adoption order, there can be unknown circumstances that could hinder the adoption process completely. "Adoption isn't for the weak" I always say. In a way, the process including the adoption education course, the home study (which includes interviewing your children you already have) and the criminal and health checks isn't the worst (lol) - it's the waiting. During our decade of adopting we thought we were going to move forward several times with certain children, then we would find out that we weren't moving forward at all. It was very frustrating. The frustrating part was feeling that excitement of potentially adopting a new child/children, then to find out plans have changed. The reasons are usually justified in one form or another. Regardless, during the wait nothing makes sense. I remember so vividly certain children we wanted to adopt that never transpired. The waiting game has been on my heart because of families I know are waiting, and it's so hard to explain, or to find reasoning when children are waiting for forever families. Besides the lack of possible workers in many areas, or the "match" wasn't just right - it's difficult for a potential adoptive parent to sit back and understand anything. At least I remember not understanding and questioning "why can't we" move forward with a particular child, or why is this happening? As our family grew through adoption, we started to understand the waiting. I'm so cliche and hypocritical to continue to write that everything happens for a reason, but it does regardless if we like it or not. We wouldn't have the family we have if the previous matches moved  forward. Waiting is so difficult but your child/children are worth waiting for. I remember we only wanted one boy around age eleven with minimal needs when we first starting looking for a match. That one boy never happened. Our journey then unfolded into many sibling adoptions with a few singles, and children with moderate to severe needs. I keep saying, "Only if I knew what I know now back then".... I don't have much advise for the waiting process accept to believe adoption will happen eventually. "Stay strong and dedicated" It will be the right child/children and during the right time. During the wait, keep busy, establish hobbies, enjoy what's happening around you and most importantly if you already have children at home, enjoy them because the transition when a new child/children arrives could be difficult on everyone involved. Adoption is exciting but also a time of change, and loss. We as adoptive parents wait and wait, we're so excited but we also have to remember that child/children we are waiting for might not be that excited. So as an experienced adoptive parent, adopting several times over, my advise is to take this time and somehow enjoy the waiting process. Spend more time with your husband, and your children (if you have any) do more for yourself because once you have a new adoption placement, you'll be needed 24/7. Switching the subject slightly..... I haven't been on the adoption bulletin board for a few years although tonight I glanced at it for complete curiosity sake. I noticed some children that we inquired in years ago are still on there. I personally know that some that we inquired about years ago also aged out of care. I understand the reasoning's for certain scenarios but when I noticed that "Olive" 8 years now and another little girl going by the name "Karly" 7 years now are still on the adoption bulletin board it breaks my heart. I know a little about both girls. Olive has been diagnosed with incontinentio pigmenti that effects her cognitively, and globally. She also has feeding and mobility complications. Karly has cerebral palsy. (same age as our daughter with CP) I know for these two separate girls they might age out of care (because of their special needs) IF forever adoptive families aren't found. I also know that us "crazy" larger families would adopt if approached. What's sad is, that won't happen. We have all the experience, but unfortunately most workers don't believe we're capable, or our numbers are too high. It's a stigma against large families. In fact, most of the large families I know are not only extremely experienced, they already have an established team of medical professionals, and most home school. They're also dedicated not only with adoption, it's dedication for literally forever given the children's needs. I know that my sister in law (if approached) would adopt one of these girls. So sometimes matches aren't perfect.......but having a forever placement is and hopefully for these two girls on the adoption bulletin board, their wait for that perfect adoptive home isn't forever either. This is where I understand and respect the matching and waiting process, although (cause I'm also the devils advocate) I think sometimes our system needs to have a little faith, and take a closer look at the inquiring families a lot more openly so these children aren't continuing to wait. Us adoptive parents have a hard time waiting but most importantly the children do. (Especially the children that know an adoptive family is being searched for) I can't imagine living in a world with no family, a place to say, "I'm going home for Christmas" as an adult. OR for Olive and Karly's future, it could mean an institution or a group home unless the foster family decides to continue their full time care after the age of nineteen. There is so many children in our province, in our country and of course in our world that need stability, that need a brighter future - I hope for them, our world changes, our political process becomes a little more accepting during the matching, the waiting is somehow a little less, for all of us to support what's best for the child - and that's having a family regardless if that potential adoptive family has no children or sixteen. As long as their capabilities can meet the needs of the child, and there is no risk of an adoption breakdown -lets find waiting children homes! If you live in British Columbia, Canada and are interested in adopting, or have already - check out our adoption bulletin board and hopefully their wait and yours will be over. I'm completely for recruiting new adoptive families, and supporting what touches my heart. That's children, and every child needs a family. Lets end the wait!

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