Nearing the Home Study Finish Line

Adoption Journey — Day 116

Well, the finish line is in sight: Tonight is likely the last of our home study appointments.

I cannot believe how quickly time has been flying in this process. It just seems like yesterday when we were starting out on the paperwork road, calling the agency, finding an adoption practitioner. I remember the first time I spoke with our adoption practitioner, and she told us she would not be able to work with us until May. It seemed like a long time away, like we’d have tons of time to get ready before it started, like we’d have everything in order.

HA!

Boy, was I wrong. Our social worker’s schedule freed up fairly soon, and we started a full two months sooner than we’d thought. Through bureaucracy and procrastination, we were in no way completely ready with all our documents and such. And we were still all naive and dreamy — “oooh, we’re adopting, and one day soon we’ll have our Mystery Baby blah blah blahity blah” — and had NO idea what we’d be needing to do. And now look at us! One appointment left. (Probably. If we don’t talk too much and need to do another one to get it all done.)

That in no way means we’re DONE, mind you. That just means we have this part of things done. The interview phase of the home study is done. It’s still a big milestone, though, because the interviews and so on can be stressful. You want so much to do well. But after this, our social worker takes the information and writes up her report to send in to the Ministry. And that will take some time yet.

We still have one or two documents to come in before our file is complete with our social worker. That will also likely take some time. And then, once it’s done, we get to read it over before it is submitted to the Ministry, and discuss it with our social worker if we have any questions or concerns. And after that, we must wait on pins and needles for provincial approval, which can also take some time.

But in the meantime, we’ll have LOTS to do. After this part is done, we begin getting paperwork together for the agency. That is the kind of stuff that needs a lawyer, like wills and agreements and the like. But also, it’s some fun stuff too, like our photo pages and a letter to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs in Ethiopia discussing our motivation for wanting to adopt from Ethiopia. And then we get THAT file complete to be sent off to Ethiopia. And then we wait some more.

So there’s a long way to go yet.

But STILL. After tonight, we’ll heave a big sigh of relief that one big milestone has been passed. In a process so long and involved, it’s nice to celebrate each time we have finished one of these mini-races. It helps get through the Mystery Baby Marathon.