Thursday, March 30, 2006

Home Study Visit #2

An adoptive homestudy for China requires four visits with your social worker (instead of the usual two visits required for most other countries). We had our second visit today, and things are continuing to go well. Since our social worker lives in Glendale, we met kind of in the middle at Sweet Tomatoes in Scottsdale. Now, if you've ever been to a Sweet Tomatoes restaurant, you know that the atmosphere inside can be kind of frenetic. Imagine trying to gracefully eat cucumbers sliced a wee bit too large to fit into your mouth while avoiding dripping extra dressing into your lap and attempting to answer questions over the surrounding din about what it means to be a mother all at the same time. Could there be better preparation for parenthood?

In the Mail

Our application to CCAI is finally in the mail!!! It feels amazing to be moving forward! It should take about a week for our agency to review the application, and hopefully approve us into their program. After that, the real whirlwind of dossier preparation begins. Hopefully, the next few days will be the quiet before the storm....

Monday, March 27, 2006

Week 3 - First Home Study Visit

We heard from our social worker over the weekend. Somehow, we thought there would be a period of time between when we first chatted with her, and when she would actually grace our doorstep. Nope. She's coming today. TODAY. All of the hopes and dreams for parenthood we've had over the last couple of years were channeled into a frantic house cleaning session yesterday.

Now, I know that the social worker is much more concerned about whether we're axe murderers in disguise than whether there's dust on our dining room table, but it's still virtually impossible to resist the urge to clean everything. So, our normally well lived-in home currently looks like a magazine cover. If we can only keep it this way for a few hours, everything will be golden. Here we go!!

Friday, March 24, 2006

The First Slowdown

When we entered this process, we thought that our wait from paperwork log in date (LID) to referral would be approximately 8-10 months. Sadly, it seems as though the process has slowed down considerably, and a wait for a referral of 10-12 months or more is becoming ever more likely. Ever one to expect the less-than-rosy scenario, I had mentally prepared myself for a year long wait (yet hoped for shorter). Don't you hate it when your fears come true?

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Week 2 - It Begins

Yesterday we got assigned our social worker to begin our homestudy. My stomach soared and twisted and turned at this first mile marker of our very long journey yet to come. I'm excited, albeit terrified, as I consider how far we've come to reach this place.

Over the past couple of years, we've collected reams of paper from prospective agencies, joined listserves and forums, made phone calls and talked to adoptive parents. We have filled out numerous applications, and had our fingerprints taken again and again. And, each time we thought we were truly ready to begin, fear, doubt, and sometimes just life, held us back.

Now, when people ask us "why China?", the answer seems simple - it's the right choice for us, at the right time. Funny how sometimes if you are patient enough to wait for them, answers reveal themselves in the clearest of ways.

And so, it begins.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Week 1 - The First Glimmer

The Chinese lantern has long been a symbol of long life and good luck. Since a crimson hue connotes vitality and energy at its maximal state, a glowing red lantern placed outside a doorway tells of a birth or marriage. As we dropped our application for an adoptive home study into the mail last week, our virtual lantern was lit. Our vermilion glow, then, is a birth story of sorts - of hope, of love, of our family.