Thursday, January 10, 2013

Love Makes Us Family

A few months ago an old dream began to surface yet again. This time I allowed it to linger in my heart long enough to think it might actually be possible. It began a long time ago when I was introduced to a book in the Elizabeth Gail Series by Hilda Stahl. Libby was a young girl that grew up in the foster care system. She was shuffled from home to home, abused and neglected in
almost every placement. That is until she was placed with the Johnson's. There she learned about Jesus and the unconditional love He and His followers offer. She learned of redemption in horrible circumstances. She learned that she was chosen.

I don't know how many times I read those books. There were twenty-one in the whole series and usually I would finish the last one and start over at the beginning. I would write little notes to my parents and put them on their pillows asking if we could adopt. I even used scripture to back me up!

Fast forward to this November 2012. A college friend announced her family's intention to adopt from Bulgaria. Immediately I began to ponder the possibility of being a foster parent. I even started researching requirements and agencies. Finally I attended an orientation meeting just to have more information. Before I left that meeting I filled out an initial application. A week later the "big" application was in my mailbox and I was assigned a home assessor. Absolute craziness ensued! I filled out the application, met with Paula, had a background check, and received more paperwork. This was all before Thanksgiving!

At Thanksgiving I announced my intentions to my family and sought their advice and support. (And also accidentally posted it on FaceBook through a support group's page that didn't have privacy settings as high as mine!) I also spoke with my closest friends and a few other people "in the trenches" just to confirm that my current support group would hold true. And of course they did!
So where am I in the process now? Well, after Saturday I will be six classes away from finishing the pre-service requirements (there are 12) and Wednesday Paula is coming to my house for the first home study interview. The end seems so far away and yet so close. When I started this process I thought it would be at least six months before I finished the classes and that the home study was far out. As with most things in life, there is still a lot of uncertainty. I have come pretty far, but I haven't finished yet and there is still a possibility that it will not work out. I suppose Paula could come Wednesday and see the dust on my ceiling fans or find out that on most days there are dishes in my sink. (Neither of which will be present by Wednesday. Oh, no! I just had a flashback to dorm life and white glove room checks!)

All in all, I am excited about the upcoming changes and challenges, but trying to stay a little detached in case it doesn't happen. I am just so thrilled that I have reached the home study portion of this process that I had to share! You are welcome to join me as I journey on.