Expectations not being met; that is the main source of frustration we feel going through most experiences in life. The tricky part is we sometimes do not consciously know what we are expecting until it does not happen. Unmet expectations have been the main source of the pain and frustration we have felt during our certification process to allow us to adopt through the foster care system. Some of those expectations originate with us and our desire to be parents. Some of those expectations were set by the information provided to us by different representatives of the agency we are working with to complete our certification. Not to minimize the many errors that have occurred during our process; lost paperwork, mis-coded background checks, delays, etc. however; most of our pain is rooted in expecting things to move smoother and faster than they have. We have been working through our frustrations and trying to view this situation from the right perspective so we can appreciate what is happening. It has not been easy, when you have expectations deeply engrained in your mind it can be hard to let those things go. Letting your expectations go is key to being able to approach the reality of a situation and find the good within what you initially see as only bad.

Our case worker (with good intentions) has repeatedly been giving us unrealistic expectations only to let us down when reality came crashing down and she was not able to deliver what she promised us. This has happened so many times it left us angry, hurt and wanting to lash out and fix the problem. I have been very conscious of not wanting to make a decision out of that anger and because of that we decided to explore our options but hold off on any permanent decisions. It was easy to say we just need to change agencies and that would solve everything. That may solve some problems but it would undoubtedly bring new problems into the mix. No matter how you approach something as complex as adoption you will be relying on other people to get through the process and those people are just like we are; they are wonderfully and humanly flawed. Therefore mistakes are going to happen and you are going to be let down. That is the nature of the world and nothing worth going after will come without some scars. We did our research though and we spoke to other agencies and other foster families. The biggest difference we found was that it appears that our agency focuses more on waiting to place children in our home because their goal is more geared towards adoption while other agencies are more focused on getting children in the home immediately and worrying about adoption later. This is not to say that the different types of agencies do not do things on a case by case basis, this is a gross generalization to make the differences more apparent. With that knowledge we had to decide which direction to head in next. Stick with our agency and their approach or make a change?

The first step to making that decision was letting go of our anger and expectations long enough to make a clear headed decision. I was so excited for every step of this process and after all of the let downs I became numb to the situation. When we were told our certification could be completed this week I could not find my joy at the progress, it seemed to be missing. This was the hardest part for me. I felt like I had let the pain rob me of my hope and joy. I spent a lot of time yesterday praying and soul searching to find my joy again. Most importantly, I reminded myself I have zero control over how things are meant to work out. God has a plan and I need to remember that. I needed a new perspective of the situation in order to not lose myself to the pain of the process.  After we discussed it all we went back to the fact that everything happens for a reason and maybe these delays forcing us to be patient have happened to slow us down. Parenthood is our goal but it is a marathon and not a sprint. Perhaps the reasons have been for us to discover what makes our agency different and to truly take the time to ask ourselves which would be the better route for us. We have decided that for the time being we think that struggling through the wait to find a more permanent match is the best route. We want to be someone’s forever family and perhaps this is how we are meant to get there. We do not know what the future will hold or where God will lead us next. All we know is that both of us, despite the countless reasons to feel differently, feel that we should stay with our current agency and see where that leads us.

Our safety check is scheduled for Friday and there is a matching event on the 19th that we are planning on attending. We hope God leads us to our children soon but we have again found our joy and faith in the knowledge that He does had it all worked out. Someday He will lead us to them, when they need us and we are ready for them.

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