Diving into the world of Adoption can be profoundly overwhelming, never more than when you are trying to find the right agency to use. We started pouring through online research and asking every agency we came across to send us an information packet. This resulted in nightly comparisons of what felt like thousands of brochures. Then we received an e-mail to attend an informational tele-conference from the (self-proclaimed) largest domestic infant adoption agency in the United States. We were so excited to hear what the experts had to say and we hoped to end the call sure we were using the agency. Well we were partially right, we ended the call knowing exactly what we needed to do it just turned out to be to never use that agency. The call was very informational and covered all the different types of adoption that are available, not just through this agency but all the avenues both domestic and international. The agency then outlined their adoption process and gave us specific details. This is where the wheels came off the wagon. The agency representative, let’s call him “Jim”, began discussing different possible outcomes of the adoption process and stated that if a couple reaches the stage of going to the hospital for the delivery of their adopted baby and the baby is born with some hereto unknown disability that the adoptive parents would be immediately removed from the process and would no longer be permitted to adopt the baby. Jim made it clear that if you “really really REALLY” want the baby you can try to fight it but he did not give you good odds of winning the fight. I do not think I have ever been so instantly angry in my life. I am not even sure where to begin. It has taken me over ten days to calm down enough to even be able to write this blog posting. To begin with, our love for our future children in no way hinges on those children being perfect. If we were able to have our own biological children and those children were born with a disability we would still love them, raise them and be thrilled to be their parents. This should not, and for us does not, change because our children come into our family through adoption. The worst part for me is that the agency makes this decision for you, with no room for your input. As soon as the call ended we had a long talk and we agreed that if this policy proved to be common for all traditional adoption agencies that for sure we would take that as a sign that we should adopt through foster care.

The next day, still fuming, I began contacting all five million (or that is how it felt) agencies to inquire what their policy was in this type of situation. We found some agencies had the same policy; some had no policy and seemed surprised by the question while others left the choice up to the adoptive parents. I was trying to process all the answers we were receiving when I checked the mail. We had an information packet and letter in our mail that said “Thank you for your interest in older child adoption/foster care”. I had two thoughts simultaneously when I read that sentence. First: I did not recall requesting the information so maybe that is a sign. Secondly: holy cow this is it. I flipped through the brochure and I just felt sure that our children would be found here. There was a statewide information number and I decided to call just to see what they said. This call could not be further from the first call if it had taken place on Mars. This was clearly an avenue devoted to helping children and to building families. The speed in which things have begun to fall into place has made my head spin. The statewide representative assured me she would send me a list of local agencies for us to choose from and I was left thinking it would be a week or more until we even received the list. Nope, the list was here in two days. The same day the list arrived we received a call from the pastor at our new church. She was thrilled to hear we were planning to adopt through foster care and said she wanted to introduce us to a couple who has already adopted through foster care. The next Sunday we met this amazing couple. They have adopted a beautiful sibling group of triplets who are in elementary school and they are currently fostering another beautiful ten month old little girl. Not only are they foster and adoptive parents they also teach some of the training classes through their foster care agency. The couple has offered to be our foster care to adopt mentors and they are going to hold our hands through the whole process. I cannot believe it but in the roughly ten days since we decided to do foster care we have put together the kids room, got a crib lined up, set a date for our adoption shower, found adoption mentors  and found an agency. Talk about your dreams coming true overnight. I have been fighting the urge to roam the streets shouting “It is ok baby (or babies) Mommy is coming”. As I am fairly certain this will not be taken in the spirit of love and excitement with which it is intended I have restrained myself. We are going to begin our (mountain of) paperwork next week, we are hoping to take all our training classes this summer and by the fall we should have little bundle(s) of joy and love in our home and hearts.