this series begins here
The initial process of this adoption was much easier. Because we adopted previously within 5 years, we only had to update our homestudy. This was a huge blessing...the homestudy process alone is very daunting, the update was much easier! We compiled another Dear Birthmother Letter which was very similar to our first one. We held to the same beliefs...Keep It Simple. A major difference this time was the use of the internet. We didn't even have a computer when Cassie was born and 3 years later we not only had a computer, we also created a webpage for our adoption search. Our webpage was essentially our Dear Birthmother Letter in a webpage format. We linked this to numerous adoption websites. Each website charged us a small fee and if I remember correctly, we linked to 3 or 4 sites.
We started this process in January of 1999. Cassie was 3 1/2 years old, she would turn 4 in May. She was in preschool and I was working 3 1/2 days a week. We had enough money saved up for the adoption process, we were ready to go. Let the ride begin!
By February/March our letters were complete and our website was created. Our agency was mailing out letters and our website was link to a few sites. We bypassed hiring an attorney. Our agency was able to perform all the necessary procedures so we could save on attorney fees. We were now in the "hurry up and wait" mode. Every day I checked our email, waiting for a response from a birthmother. Everyday I checked our voicemail waiting from a call from our agency.
On our website we had listed our email address as a contact. Prospective birthmothers would email us for the initial contact and I would respond with request for their phone number. After a phone conversation, if the match appeared to be promising, we would refer them to our agency. If they contacted the agency, then the process would begin.
Waiting....waiting.....never pray for patience, you just might be given the opportunity to practice it!!
Cassie's adoption was very quick....we were hoping to get that lucky again. At times I wished I could look into a crystal ball just to know how long it would take....that is all I wanted to know...how long did we have to wait...how long would we have to practice patience.
The initial email came in May. I promptly responded and followed up a phone call. This woman needed alot of financial support. Legally an adoptive couple can pay for any expenses related to the pregnancy. This can include medical fees, food, clothing, etc. We are not a wealthy family, we had our limits. She did not have insurance or a place to live. We could not afford this situation. We wished her well....it was very hard....the desire for a baby sometimes supercedes the reality of the situation. We had to always remember to think logically and not emotionally.
Waiting again.....practicing patience again.....
Our next email came from a woman who was staying with friends in Washington. She had always wanted "to live in the Bay Area" (in California) - this was our first red flag. We interpreted this as saying that she wanted to live with us or have us find her a place to live near us and of course we would pay all expenses. Then the second red flag appeared - "All I want from you after the baby is born is a plane ticket to South Africa." South Africa?? Why South Africa? "I have burned alot of bridges here and I don't know anyone in South Africa." I was speechless. We live in a fairly large country. What has she done is her lifetime? Again....we thanked her for her interest....wished her luck....and we walked away.
to be continued...