There are plenty of “How to Adopt” books which cover how to pick an agency, what a home study is, and affording adoption. There are also plenty of books which discuss “Adoptive Parenting” with topics such as attachment, answering questions from your child and maintaining your child’s heritage. But I don’t know of any books that focus on what to do while “Waiting to Adopt.” This stage between completing all of your adoption paperwork and when you receive your new child can be a very difficult time. It’s hard to just “wait” and not be antsy for your life to be turned upside down once you have your new child in your arms.
Most people are surprised when they reach this “Waiting to Adopt” stage because their busy life suddenly comes to a screeching stop. Probably for months they have been researching agencies, collecting paperwork for their home study, meeting with their social worker, following up with their referral letters and many other tasks. Then once everything is complete, there is nothing left for them to do but wait. And wait. And wait. Couples usually feel a need to be doing “something” like they have been but they don’t know what to do at this point. Everything is out of their hands until an adoption situation arises.
Continue reading What to Do While “Waiting to Adopt”
Not long ago I was out of town in a museum with my children. My one-year-old Son was toddling around looking for something to capture his attention when he found a boy and girl dancing and singing songs with one another. He stopped and stared at these siblings. The boy was around 12 years old with blonde hair and blue eyes. His sister who he was flinging around was around 9 years old with black hair, dark eyes and very dark skin. I’m not an expert on ethnicities but I assumed she was Hispanic as she looked similar to my children.
I was pleased that my Son was staying in one place so I also watched the siblings goof around. Suddenly their Mother appeared and loudly said to her daughter, “Look Honey, he’s looking at you because you two look the same! He’s wondering where you’re from. Aren’t you curious where he’s from? Maybe you’re from the same place because you two look the same! Isn’t that amazing? Why don’t you ask him if you’re from the same place?”
Continue reading Telling the World that Your Adopted Child is Different
When my oldest son, Keith, was in Kindergarten I would volunteer in his classroom. The first time or two I arrived in his room and he ran over to give me a big hug, I noticed confused looks on some of his classmates’ faces. Then I heard some of them whisper to Keith, “Is SHE your Mom?” or “How can she be your MOM?” He would proudly answer, “Yes that’s my Mom.” and “She just is.”
He probably didn’t understand why he was getting the third degree about his Mom. I clearly understood that it was because they assumed Keith’s Mom would look him with dark skin, dark brown eyes, and black hair. Then I walked in with my light skin, blue eyes and blond hair. I would have been surprised if the children didn’t question if I was actually his Mom.
Continue reading Going to my Child’s School and Giving His Classroom the Adoption Talk
“Your child will find you.”
The first time I heard that was when I attended an Adoption Support Group. The meeting leader, an adoptive mother, spoke these words to give the attendees hope. I had just experienced a miscarriage after three years of infertility treatments. I really didn’t have any hope that my child was going to “find” me at that point.
I was the one who had to choose adoption, fill out paperwork, complete a home study, create a profile, work with potential Birthparents and foot the adoption bill. What work was my child doing in finding me? Wasn’t I doing all of the work?
Continue reading As a Perspective Adoptive Parent, do not Worry, “Your Child Will Find You”