"Every child deserves a home." --Harry Holt

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Cupcakes and Meatballs? Part 1

Cupcake had been home for a year in July 2012. We had 're-finalized' her adoption, and were settling into being parents in a joyful and comfortable way. We knew that we wanted Cupcake to have sibling(s) someday. We both have siblings, and we love them all dearly. It helps that they are all pretty fantastic people, but we want Cupcake to have those relationships growing up. Also, we had a suspicion that she would THRIVE as a big sister, because her other nickname? Bosslady. She loves to both be of service, and 'direct' people. 

So, last June and July, we were researching and praying about our 'options' for growing our family. We would LOVE to adopt from Ethiopia again, and maybe someday we will, but it just wasn't the time. We looked at adopting a 'special needs' child from China, but you are required to be 30 before starting the process. We weren't 30 then, and felt like we didn't want to WAIT so long to start (we are 30 now!). We researched Korea, Uganda, the Congo, etc, and we were about a nano-second from starting a Congolese adoption when we just kept coming across domestic adoption. It wasn't really something we had researched a ton, but we definitely weren't against it. You know what turned me off the most from a domestic process? The fact that a first mother could potentially commit to letting us adopt her unborn child and then change her mind. Cognitively, I totally understand this is COMPLETELY her choice, and if she decides she CAN parent, she should go for it... it's HER child. Emotionally, I was scared of having my heart broken. Stay with me here, that my friends is called irony and foreshadowing.

August 2012, we began a homestudy for a domestic adoption. There really is no way to have an accurate timeline in domestic adoption, because once you are 'paper ready' it's all about a first family feeling a connection with you and choosing you. We were really okay with this. We were using both an agency, and our homestudy provider was sort of a facilitator working with private adoption attorneys. Our agency was 'quoting' that families like ours were in general adding to their family about 12 months after being paper-ready. That was the 'perfect' timeline in our minds, as Cupcake and the new child would be about 3 years apart at that time. HAHAHAHAHA. 

We mostly finished up our homestudy in September, but we were waiting on our FBI fingerprints/criminal checks to come back from our home state and previous states for it to be completely finalized. We hadn't paid any of our agency fees, we did submit some photos and narratives to be presented to first families to help them 'get to know us,' but we were also asked to make a little video, and we hadn't even started that. In general, we weren't in a huge rush (completely opposite from Cupcake's adoption where we were kind of rushing EVERYTHING). 

So, October 17th rolls around and a few days prior to that, we had been talking around that time about how we should really finish up the last few details so we could become 'active' and having our profile shown to women who were potentially considering and adoption plan. I had just returned to work in August and it was busy, busy, busy adjusting back to both of us working full-time, but also trying to figure out how to spend lots of time with Cupcake. On October 17th, things got just a little bit crazier! I was dealing with an honest-to-goodness crisis at work. I'm a school counselor, so I can't go into detail other than to say... it was a rough morning. My cell had rung a couple of times, but I just kept hitting 'ignore,' because I had zero time to talk. Call #3 came from the Mister, and he NEVER calls me at work unless it is important. He will text me here and there throughout the day, but a phone call means business. So, I answered figuring that daycare had called him to tell him Cupcake was sick and needed to be picked up, but he was stuck in meetings (this became a theme this year... someone was ALWAYS sick). Nope, instead he blurted into the phone, "Why haven't you been answering your phone?! Me: "I'm in the middle of a problem that I can't just walk away from!" Him: "Well, the agency has been trying to get a hold of you." Me: "Yeah, I saw that, but I figured Kathy (our caseworker) was just calling to see how we were doing and if we were EVER going to pay our fees." Him: "No, we've been chosen as a family for a baby." Me: "No, that's not possible, we aren't even 'active' yet." Him: "Well, apparently there was a woman they thought we would be a good match for, so they went ahead and showed her the info they had without telling us, and she ended up choosing us." Me: *silence* after about a minute... "Is this a joke?" Him:" No! We need to call them back to find out the details and they want us to call them this morning." Me: "I reeeeaaaaaaalllllllllyyyyyyy hate to do this to you, but I have to call you back when I get this work thing sorted out." 

It took about another 45 minutes for me to get things squared away at work, and then I flew out of the building and drove to the K's office where there were ABSOLUTELY NO PARKING SPACES AND IT WAS RAINING OUTSIDE, AND OHMYGOSH I AM FREAKING OUT WHY CAN'T I JUST PARK MY CAR?! Finally, I made it inside, and security didn't question the deranged look in my eyes and let me be escorted in. We called the agency back and heard all of the details. The baby was due to be born in 8 days via c-section, the mother had taken a look at MANY profiles and said no to all of them, so they took a chance on our family knowing that we matched a number of criteria she was looking for and she said yes the same day she saw our info, the baby was going to be born 900-ish miles away in Philly and could we be there in a week? Us: *silence*  "Can we call you back?" 

We hung up the phone and K had a blank stare. This was pretty reminiscent of when we got Cupcake's referral, so really... that's a good sign. I took about 5 minutes to pray and then knew that there was no freaking way I would say no. I was SCARED out of my mind, but I knew in my heart of hearts that this was our next child. We knew it was a girl. I knew exactly what we would name her if her first mother agreed to let us choose a first name. I knew we wanted her to choose a middle name. The only part I couldn't quite figure out was, how we were going to tell co-workers, friends and some of our family members... we had only told a small handful of people that we were starting an adoption process. We were planning to tell more people once our homestudy was done and we were 'active,' because it would just be SILLY to not tell people and then have this weird conversation with people where you are like, "Oh, by the way, I will be gone from work for the next 6 weeks because we are adopting again, oh didn't I mention it was possible that I would need to take maternity leave after already taking a year off of work with my first child and only being back from 2.5 months?" Yeah, that would have been AWKWARD. Wait...

This is already a novel. I've no idea how to edit myself, so let's just make this a series... Part 2 up next!

1 comment:

SaraLyons said...

Anxiously awaiting part 2!


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