I had a productive afternoon at the county office on Friday. Resource families (that’s the official term for families wanting to adopt or foster children) who are approved for adoption are allowed to look through files of children who are waiting to be adopted. Every month the state workers get together for a statewide staffing of the children. They try to match families with kids. In addition, the files get delivered to county DHS offices for families to review.
I was able to review the new files from December and January. I took nearly a page of notes on several sibling groups. It was encouraging to see sibling groups that meet our homestudy criteria. While I don’t feel like we’re being especially picky about the kids we want to adopt, we do have a few things we’re looking for in a sibling group. Or rather, a few things that we know won’t work. For example, we really only have one bedroom available for our adopted kids. The sibling group needs to be able to share a room so the very awesome group of 5 brothers and sisters simply won’t work in our home. (I kinda wish I had realized that before I read profiles on the first three little girls…oops!) We also have an upper age limit because we have three teenage boys living in our home and we feel like there needs to be some space in between the two groups. (That’s why I make myself skip over the teenager files. Reading and knowing we can’t adopt them is simply too hard.) We’re also committed to adopting a sibling group, so I also skip over the individual files.
I brought my list of kids home so Rob and I could discuss things. Actually, I called him right as I left the office and gave him a brief description of a few of the groups. I knew I was writing down more information than I would have if he was there with me, and when I got home I also realized I’d written down two groups that really don’t match our criteria. If we had been looking at the files together, we’d probably have talked through it and eliminated them before even leaving the office. I guess I was just making sure not to overlook anything since he wasn’t with me. Plus, I really want all of these kids to have homes.
We had several conversations on Saturday and Sunday. I carried my folded piece of paper in my pocket throughout the weekend, pulling it out during times of prayer during mass on Saturday evening; referencing it when chatting with my sister on Sunday afternoon. Rob and I made a tentative “order of preference” list. The next step is to let our caseworker know if we are interested in any children. Then, he checks with their caseworker to see if they have been matched with anyone else in the time in between the staffing meeting and now. If not, they’ll review our file to see if our family would be a good match with the kids. If so, we are then “authorized”. Then full disclosure of information takes place and we can choose to proceed afterwards.
I emailed our caseworker on Monday to have him check on a sibling group for us. I’ve not heard back yet, but am hoping he’s able to find out something this week. There is an adoption party in OKC later this month that we are planning on attending.
And that, my friends, is a very factual update on our adoption process. Nothing too major. Nothing too deep and emotional. Maybe I’ll blog that one tomorrow. 🙂