As you can probably tell from my recent posts, I've been feeling pretty overwhelmed with everything going on in my life. Adoption can be overwhelming by itself, but together with a crazy life at work right now, it has added to my stress. The two together has meant that I have not been sleeping and no time to recharge because I would get home from a busy day at work and then immediately start researching adoption agencies. I reached my breaking point this week. Here's how that came about and the resolution we found.
As I've written about before, I have struggled with the idea the large placement fees with adoption amount to buying a baby. I have even seen some agencies where they describe the situations currently available, and each one has a dollar amount attached to it. I feel strongly that the decisions we make with this adoption need to be ones where we can tell our future child about them and not make them feel uncomfortable or angry about the circumstances. I don't want the birth parents to be pressured into making an adoption plan. I don't want to make a baby seem like a commodity.
We feel more secure using an agency rather than going an entirely independent route. Partly it is our desire to avoid making this process seem like a sale (once you start thinking about finding a private placement, people start using terms like marketing). And partly it is security for us because there are people out there who want to take advantage of adoptive parents. Another factor is that we feel like we need some education, both to help us get through this process, and to be good parents to a child who will have to deal with unique circumstances of having been adopted. Only the local agencies appear to have plans to educate us. The problem? We've only been able to identify two agencies that we feel comfortable with. And they both scheduled their home study groups at times that were impossible for us.
OK, not quite impossible, but very very unlikely. One scheduled their group for the day of my husband's graduation. I mean, he is not going to be denied his degree just because he doesn't go to the graduation ceremony, but he has worked so hard for this degree, he needs to go. The other agency scheduled their training for two weekends that both conflict with important things we have going on. My husband was able to confirm that he could move the conflict he had for the second weekend. But the bigger problem was always my conflict with the first weekend. I have a major event at work that overlaps. The next opportunity to work with this agency would not happen until October and we effectively be putting off our adoption process for almost a year. That is unacceptable. Even the training for this agency in April that seemed impossible for us to make is such a long ways off.
So that's where we were on Wednesday. The only options that appeared morally acceptable seemed impossible logistically. We had a meeting at a church and planned to ask our pastor for advice after our meeting that night. But he had to zip out right afterwards and we never got a chance to talk about it. I didn't sleep that night. And I was upset, anxious, depressed, stressed, etc. As I was going through the motions at work, I kept thinking that time was slipping away and I didn't know what to do. I keep using the phrase overwhelmed because I don't have a better term. I just wasn't coping well.
And then suddenly it hit me that we need to slow down. There are too many decisions to make and we can't rush through this. Maybe waiting until April isn't such a long wait after all. While I was still thinking that April was impossible anyway, the notion that we need to slow down and I don't need to make these life altering decisions this week made me feel a bit better.
And then around lunch the impossible happened. Something changed with my work conflict where a sliver of opportunity opened up. I may have to jet to off to a different city the day after our training, but I think I will be able to attend both weekends. I am not usually the type to describe events in my life as having divine intervention. I tend to think that God has many important things to think about than messing around with my little life. But if there is anything where I feel God is pointing the way for us, this is it.
So I called the agency and secured us a spot in their April group. We are slowing down. And I feel at peace.
Quiet house, happy kids…
3 days ago