So we were left, me driving to avoid motion sickness and my husband captive to discussion about our options. (see a previous email on those). We decided that night that although in our hearts we'd prefer to have more biological children and maybe one day we will either by "accident" (hehe...that takes on a whole different meaning with infertility!) or by planning and medical intervention (IVF-ICSI), we really feel that the best option for expanding our family is to pursue adoption.
And then we got excited and had the opportunity to think about so many of the millions of directions that could lead us. Our initial decision was that we, at this point in our lives, are not interested in International adoption. And, we feel that if we have to spend 20K or so on increasing our family size we'd rather pursue the biological options. So, that leaves us with two main options...adoption through finding a random friend/family reference or adopting through the "system".
We attended an informational meeting on August 8th at the CPS office in Arlington. It didn't really prrovide us with any additional infrmation but did give us the opportunity to officially start the process and further discussions in my home. While I left the meeting less sure that this was our option, J was confident and even excited. We waited to fill out the application until we were able to think about it some more, pray about it, and then talk to others who've been down that road.
We met with our wonderful friends who opened their home and hearts to us to share from their experiences and knowledge bank about adoption, particularly from the foster-care system. While I will never share with anyone else what they shared with us, what I will say is that we are both so unbelievably grateful and indebted to them for allowing us to share in a glimpse of their lives as they were, as they are, and as they hope it will be. We left that special time 1000000% confident that we were heading in the right direction for so many reasons. We were so excited about pursuing this option and haven't looked back.
It was during this conversation we felt the initial plan was really outlined for us. Pursue adoption through the foster care system while simultaneously saving for IVF-ICSI. Afterall, if we save up the money and decide at some point that we don't want to go through with trying for more bio-kids, well, there really isn't a downside to that.
We decided to put our application in with DFPS on August 14th. I drove it there myself and dropped it off in person to make sure it got there and give it an extra chance at getting started on time. It took us 2 weeks to hear back from them and I was getting anxious (see previous post about what I'm learning!), but we did hear back from the recruiter on Saturday (8/29) at about 9pm saying that she was ready to put us in our training class. It was such a glorious moment! I can't explain it...it was wonderful. It's almost comparable to not taking that first birth control pill when you are trying to get pregnant. It's like going to the pre-conception appointment. And so now we're eager to become actively trying adoptive parents!
Some of our decisions:
- We will be initially open to accepting 1-3 kids, ideally a sibling group of 2-3.
- We are undecided about the age, but know we want additional boys for our son to play with and grow up with for sure...we are leaning on having children younger than him enter our home...either that or right around his age. I think of how great it would be to have a 2 1/2 year old, 3 year old, and 3 1/2 year old. But I'm crazy and in reality we're just excited to go on this journey
- We do not want to pursue foster-care right now but are willing to consider foster-to-adopt with the idea that we'd be pursuing younger children who require 18 months in the system before being eligible to adopt anyway...we are also willing to pursue straight adoption and believe that over the next few months we'll probably get a little clarification on this.
We'll be going to training in October, which means we'll be doing our home study sometime through November to January...we've been advised that it may take longer because of the holidays. We'll see. Like I said, the reality is that we're really excited to go on this journey. We're praying for our family. We're praying for our future children. We're praying that we get closer to Christ now and in the future. We're praying for our son and for wisdom to parent him now, through this transition, and forever. We're eager to get started and yet we know that this whole adventure will be more challenging than anything we've ever expected we'd face.
And we're so grateful. But we might need your help making it through and additional grace as we learn once again who we are...letting Christ shape our family rather than planning it all out ourselves.