Such an exciting step in our adoption journey, the beginning of the "paperchase"! Yesterday we met with our case worker from Christian Family Care and spent about two hours delving into our lives, marriage, health, history, faith, and motivation for adopting. It went so well, though Josh and I are not perfect and have definitely had a dramatic few years, we also got to tell how God has used each situation to bring us closer to Him and each other.
Our case worker even prayed with us! After all was said and done she told us she would like us to move forward with the adoption and we talked in length about where we go from here. She gave us a packet about two inches thick filled with everything from fingerprint sheets to temperment analysis tests. You would be blown away by the amount of paperwork needed to complete an adoption, and this packet only prepares us for our homestudy!
The packet includes about a million essay questions about your life and upbringing, and along with all the other documentation needed (physicals, birth certificates, budget analysis, etc.)it will take us about six to eight weeks to complete the packet. After that is turned in (along with a large homestudy fee...ouch!), we will begin the homestudy. That is something I will go into more detail on at some point, but it is a long process including more paperwork, interviews, and home inspections. It is the last requirement to become certified to adopt.
Our particular agency requires that couples take a seven week course on adoption issues, and those begin for us in January. Once our homestudy and classes are complete, we can put together our match letter, which is basically a profile of our family for birth mothers to look through when choosing an adoptive family for their child.
Once that is complete, we go in the match book! From there the average wait to be matched with a baby is twelve months. As you have probably calculated, we are a long way from bringing a baby home! But we are one step closer, and that's exciting.
We also know that it will take time to come up with the funding for this adoption, so time is okay right now. The fees are staggered out a bit, a chunk due when our packet is turned in, another chunk at the first class, another when we enter the match book, and the remainder when the child is officially placed with us. One thing at a time!
If you are praying, please pray for Josh and I to find the time necessary to complete this overwhelming packet! That God will provide the money for each step, and we will not be anxious about it. Please especially pray for our birth family, that God will comfort and guide them in a very difficult time.
Thank you so much for reading and praying!