Thursday, 18 August 2011

Tiny steps...

Good news!  First proper step in the right direction.  We have been invited to attend a training session in November.  I feel very positive about this as the council obviously spend money in order to train you, so I think they must feel like we are likely to get through.  Again this doesn't make you any less nervous about the whole thing.  It's very weird to think that when you are on the training the social workers are scrutinising your ideas and participation.  At least they are honest about it though!

Now we have to decide whether or not to carry on with our resite fostering.  We were approved as weekend respite foster carers for disabled children back in January having applied in March 2010.  The idea is that we would look after one child for one weekend every month for most of their childhood.  It was the foster training and home study that made us realise we were ready to adopt.  I'm not sure if that sounds strange or not.  But anyway, now we are not sure whether to be linked with a foster child or not.  We are having an extension early next year, and with the training and home study I'm not sure if it will all just be a bit much, as well as the fact that we won't be able to offer the child a stable long term placement because a few months in the back of our house will be knocked down, and then we could be adopting!  Big decisions to make.

I was talking to the social worker and she said we could have our panel this time next year and be matched a few months later which would mean that it would be crazy to start fostering now.  But on the other hand it could take a couple of years.... nobody knows.  I think the experience of fostering would be really good, but I don't want to offer a child a home with us, only to take it away again a few months later.  More discussion needed I think.

So...back to school in 2 1/2 weeks.  It's weird to think that it could be my last full time year for a long time especially as my career has only just started.  I'm not sure what happened to us, but we couldn't be more sure that we are ready and really excited about becoming parents! It's mad to think that we could potentially be matched some time next year.  I'm gearing up for a big old wait though.  I don't think it's a good idea to set yourself unrealistic deadlines in the adoption process.  It seems to me you have to try and use each bit of waiting time to reflect and prepare.  We have a ridiculous amount of parenting books already.  Again, it seems weird to buy books about parenting a ficticious child...but we are anyway!

I think I'm getting carried away again!  Needless to say we are very excited about getting past the first hurdle and actually starting the process properly.  There won't be any really interesting news now until November but I'll keep adding my general ponderings for those of you who are interested!

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Busy busy...

Not me, the social workers!  I feel slightly mean about the tone of my last post now.  Given the industrial action it's not really too surprising that agencies are running a bit behind.  After all, the children in care always have to come first and I guess that means that the social workers are always crazily busy juggling nervous potential adopters (me) with children desperately in need of their help.  I know which I would choose and really, which I would want them to choose; it's just difficult to rationalise that when you're feeling anxious!

Anyway, for those of you who are interested, we should know for definite by the end of the week whether we're on the training course in November.  Excellent!

Thursday, 11 August 2011

Of course we haven't heard anything!


So...yesterday was 2 weeks since the social worker did her home visit. She told us that by this time we would get a call to let us know if we have made it onto the training course. We called them and they said that as the course isn't until October they haven't made any decisions yet. Horribly disappointing although I can't say we were surprised. Miscommunication is something I find quite irritating though, the NHS does it brilliantly as well. Tell us it will be a month and we will be pleasantly surprised if it's 3 weeks; tell us it will be 2 weeks and we will be horribly disappointed if it's 3 weeks. Our double glazing company have the right idea (told us it would be 8 weeks and it was 6), but public services can't seem to get the gist. I'm not saying mislead people, just be honest, or honestly pessimistic in order to avoid horrible disappointment! Ho rant over.

Last night we went to "mind out for the laughs" in Brighton. It was a comedy show to raise money and awareness of Mind Out, an lgbt mental health charity. We were in Brighton anyway and thought it might be fun. It was really good. I'm really glad there are services like this available, especially for young people. One funny bit involved a woman taking about her middle class, organic self harming with stinging nettles. Quite random.

So no news. Not sure if no news is good news in this case as I guess is we were amazingly awesome they would call us back straight away but I'm not really sure it works like that.

5 weeks into my eight week holiday now and the time is flying by...once again I'm doing too much thinking! I'm not actually very good at being on my own, I have a penchant for self-criticism which is exacerbated by too much procrastination time. This is something I need to be super aware of and keep in check before the arrival of a potentially new parent blaming little person!

The New Family Socialers have just been on their annual camp and I think everyone on there who doesn't have kids yet looks on it with huge aspiration. "One day my friend, you too shall camp with all the other gay parents and their children". But for now, we wait! Maybe one day I will be blogging about my camping experience! I don't even like camping! Must be the hormones...

Monday, 1 August 2011

Baby shower and playing the waiting game


so on Saturday we held a baby shower for my chum who is pregnant with not one but two babies. It was a wonderful day and we are all really excited about their arrival in a few months time. It's quite exciting to think about the prospect of our kids playing with each other in a few years time (admittedly, really quite a way off but I'm on holiday so have a rather longer than normal procrastination time currently).

I was talking to my friend and it got me thinking that couples who have biological babies go through similar stages to adoption, they're just not written down, or subject to government targets. When couples start "trying for a baby" it can take ages and I guess that must be pretty stressful in itself. We're worrying about whether we have passed the home visit and will be offered a place on the next training course. In some ways I wonder if they will offer it to older people as they have less time to wait, I'm not sure how it works.

It's a funny old time though. We're talking about it with lots of people which makes me worry that if we don't progress further we will have loads of people to tell which would make us feel rubbish!

I've also been making a colourful spreadsheet of our finances. It's going to be a tight few years if we both work very part time as we hope we will. But I guess that's just part of having kids really and I'm assuming that you just make do so long as you can pay the bills! At least our house will be awesome by then and hopefully not costing us very much.

So that's me. Not much to say at the moment really. We're just waiting so my blogs will be filled up with my musings and other assorted bumblings until we find out that we have a place on the training course.

Stressful times and we haven't even really started yet!