“Good things come to those who wait”. “The Lord’s timing is perfect”. “Patience is a virtue”.  All the old platitudes we tell ourselves and others whenever there is a wait involved. The frustrating part about all these expressions is they are all true, but knowing that truth does little to assuage the pain and frustration experienced during the wait to adopt. The worst part for parents preparing to adopt is the wait involved. Activity eases the process in the beginning, there are things to do; fill out paperwork, background checks to complete, prepare the house to welcome children. However, once these things are all complete there is nothing to do but wait. Wait for that magical moment when someone will select your family as the perfect place for a child. When the decision to adopt comes after battling infertility; the waiting period seems at once familiar and a new form of torture for you to endure on your family building journey.  After years of trying to conceive a child and having those dreams dashed month after month, cycle after cycle, loss after loss it can be difficult to trust the process and truly believe that everything will work out. While navigating our wait I have discovered a few helpful tips to survive the (seemingly interminable) wait:

  1. Staying busy is the best thing for you. Enjoy your hobbies, spend quality adult time with your partner, family and friends. When your miracle arrives you will fall off the social grid for a while so why not rack up some good catch up chats beforehand. Maybe take a romantic trip just the two of you.
  2.  Give up the notion that others will understand what you are going through. Your friends and family can support you both and love you both during this time but few (if any) will really understand what the wait feels like. This is why it is so beneficial to have other adoptive-parents-to-be or veteran adoptive parents in your support system. No matter how smooth the process goes for you, we all have days where we question everything and lose our faith in the system. In those times it is important to have people you can lean on.
  3. Give yourself and the world some grace. It can be easy to beat ourselves up for feeling dejected by the wait, we feel (or are told) that we should stay excited and hopeful. That is a lot easier said than done. It is important to allow yourself to feel however you are feeling, to acknowledge it and to allow it to be ok.  That is the best way through any emotion. All those offering those time-honored platitudes, telling you how to feel or continually asking for updates; they mean well and often think they are being helpful. Give yourself and everyone else some love, this part will pass.
  4. When all else fails; say a prayer, hug it out and remember your miracle IS on the way!

We are surviving our wait. Tomorrow we should find out how much my knee injury is going to impact our adoption. We are still waiting for our out of state clearances, which are the final steps before they do the last safety check at the house and clear us to start accepting little ones.