Since the bake sale (and before) we’ve had a lot of people ask about the process that we are going through. The most common question is ‘now what?’ To be honest, we have some idea, but no definite answers. Such is life, I suppose.
We spent a lot of time looking at two main options—we could adopt through a private organization or we could do Utah’s Foster-adopt program. Both have some big pros and cons from cost to time frames to regulations to being more or less in control of what kind of child you can take. We’ve been contemplating this pretty hard for quite some time…and then a third option of sorts came up. And fast.
My mother-in-law does Christian ministry through the women’s prison and periodically, there will be a female in there that is pregnant. Depending on their situation, the mother may consider giving the baby up for adoption. That’s where we come in...maybe.
When we first began really actively moving in the direction of adoption, we started out by taking the Utah Foster Care Foundation pre-service classes. We figured that was a good step to get us oriented with their process, as well as getting a realistic look at the challenges ahead of us. After that, we would decide how to work through the steps. About the time that we graduated our class, Jeanette met a young lady through the prison that is due with a baby girl in early June. She’d mentioned to some of the women that she was considering adoption and her and Jeanette eventually connected and she expressed her interest in the process.
The way everything has come about so easily and quickly makes it impossible for us to ignore that this may be the right option for us right now. The mother has not yet decided, but I believe we are a strong (and possibly the only) candidate if she does pursue adoption. If she does decide that adoption and we are the right choice for her and the child, we still complete a home study and then most of the legal terms are done through a social worker and a lawyer. All we can do on our end of things is complete the home study and communicate with the mother to our best ability.
As for the technical process, we are about a third to halfway through the home study. We’ve turned in about half of the paperwork, now we just wait for the background check to come back and the social worker will begin the interviews.
It’s been an exciting time for us as this has all come to be in the last couple weeks. To think that we could have a newborn baby in 3 months, give or take, is thrilling! At the same time, there is an instinct to protect yourself and your family from possibility of getting turned down or hurt in some other way. We go from not wanting to talk about it almost as if we are afraid of jinxing ourselves, to wanting to start a baby registry and pick out names.
In the end, the risk is worth it. If it works out, we will be elated. If it doesn’t, it will be one more life lesson in appreciating the things we do have and what is ahead of us. We can’t go through life too afraid of heartbreak to love and we can’t go into this or any adoption not willing to try 100% for fear of our own feelings.