Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Little Bit Of A Shift...

As many of you know, I don't generally use Lattanzi Land as a personal forum; I don't share a lot about my personal life other than the occasional little ditty here and there.  This blog is mostly for me to opine on whatever current issue that happens to strike me and thus leaves little room for personal details.  That all changes right now, at least for this evening...

Some of you saw my post written on New Year's Day where I wrote the following:
I hope that we have a child. People who know us well know our story; I won't elaborate here, but in time you will know.
Now is the time for that elaboration.

For the last year and a half, my wife and I have been trying to adopt a child.  We have been married for a little over seven years now, and no children have been forthcoming the normal way, so adoption became the next logical avenue to pursue.  We went through the process of being licensed by our home county to become both foster and adoptive parents.  The idea behind it was that we originally wanted to adopt an older child (ages three through nine) because the process of adopting an infant would be a) too costly and b) too long to complete.  

We ran into all sorts of complications during the licensing process itself - we hit the "Snowpocalypse" of February, 2010 during the actual classes and then later, our social worker who was responsible for completing our home study had to go on to bed rest due to pregnancy complications.  Finally, after starting the process in late September of 2009, in June of 2010 we were licensed by the county to be foster and adoptive parents.  We started inquiring about children, and then we began to wait.

And wait...

And wait...

We inquired about children and sent our home study out to other states.  We sometimes wouldn't get follow up responses afterward.  There were calls from social workers who obviously hadn't even read our profile or home study, such as one asking us if we would like to adopt a seventeen year old girl who had a two-year girl of her own! It was a frustrating time, but we were willing to endure a lot of it in the hopes that we would have a breakthrough.  That is, until a couple of things happened that sort of broke our back with the entire county system of adoption

The first came when we were in line this past spring to adopt a ten year old girl.  Everything seemed to be a perfect match; her social worker came to see us and we were interviewed.  All of those things went well and there didn't seem to be anything wrong until we got a call saying that we weren't chosen due to alleged factors that were never once mentioned at any point during the interview process.  It was sheer devastation for us and it took some time to recover.

The second event came early in the summer when we had inquired about a seven year old girl and had gotten a request for our home study and had gone some time without hearing anything.  My wife called and asked if there was any movement with regard to that child and she was told that they had decided on the placement "last week".  That was it.  We had gotten no calls and no contact.  Not even a courtesy call to tell us to get lost or that they weren't interested in us.  Sheer silence.  

What else could we do?  With all the children out there who desperately needed homes, not one could seemingly be found.  I don't blame the social workers - they are overworked and stretched out.  There are some changes needed in the foster-adoption system.  I won't delve into them right now, but let's just say that it has a lot to do with red-tape and over-regulation. It became clear to us that we needed to pursue a new path - that of adopting an infant.

This path has its own challenges - availability of infants and especially the cost of services in adopting.  We are well aware of these challenges and have developed a plan to meet them.  One of the major headaches involved is that we have to have another home study completed; the county home study is not permitted to be used for a private agency.  That alone sets back the larger process of finding a placement by a good three to four months.  But we have confidence that we will soon be able to welcome a child into our home.  We have always wanted to be parents - but to say that these past few years have been merely a test would be an understatement.  Nonetheless, we pray that we are on the right path set for us by the Lord, and that he will bless us with a beautiful little baby.

To this end, we have started a blog detailing our story - entitled To Grow Our Family. Please go and check it out.  We also started a Facebook page to help people stay up to date on the latest happenings on our journey toward adoption.  Please go to it and "Like" it, and tell your friends too!  Send them the link to this blog post and get the word out.  Any notes of encouragement are accepted and appreciated, as well.  

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  I know it's a bit different than the somewhat caustic and occasionally cantankerous musings you get from time to time here, but this is something that is very close and dear to my heart.  I hope you can help share our story with as many people as possible.  And from here on, there will be periodic updates on our story as well.  

Again, thank you very much.

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