20 January 2010

Taking the Bull by the Horns

Having an operational computer in one's classroom is sometimes a dangerous thing.

So I e-mailed the C.hildren's A.id So.ciety again (I was channeling Sew at the time, I also phoned and left a voice mail!). This time from a different section of the website and this is the response that I received:

Hello JellyBelly,

I am an Adoption Worker at your local C.hildren's A.id S.ociety and am responding to your adoption inquiry.

You should be aware that most of the children we place for adoption are between 3-12 years old. Therefore, we are looking for families who are able to adopt children in this age range. We also have a need for families who are willing to consider a family history of a major mental illness or prenatal alcohol and drug abuse. If you are open to these possibilities, you can call me to discuss your request. I can be reached at 90*-3**-6***, Ext. 30** and am available Monday to Friday, 9-5 pm.

If this is your first inquiry about adoption I would recommend that you check the website, www.adoptontario.ca. This website provides an overview of public adoption as well as profiles of children presently available for adoption in Ontario.

For further information about other options such as private and international adoption, you could check the website, www.adoption.on.ca.

The Adoption Council of Ontario hosts "How to Adopt Seminars" and information about these sessions is posted on their website. These seminars are held in your city and one nearby.

Thank-you for contacting your Ch.ildren's Ai.d S.ociety and I wish you all the best on your adoption journey.

Regards,

Adoption Worker


Lucky for me I did my research. I've read through the recommended websites more than once (meaning that I read them a bit obsessively) in the past four and a half years.

So when I read Mr. JB the e-mail he seemed a bit hesitant.

I'm pretty resigned to the fact that doing adoption this way means that we probably will not get an infant. And as the e-mail says, the children may have health issues. I'm open to a child with learning difficulties or even a disability, but Mr. JB isn't 100% about that.

A couple of months ago I was reading a wonderful book that I heard about on the C.BC. It was about a dad (who is a public radio personality and an author) and his struggle parenting his severely disabled son. I was absolutely riveted by the story. I suggested that Mr. JB read the book but he wasn't too keen on the idea. He is forever saying that I read depressing stuff and that I need to lighten up.

Ever since I read the book I have felt that perhaps I have a calling to parent a child with difficulties.

When I was in elementary school there was a girl with Down Syndrome in my class. In the seventh grade I was paired up with her for industrial arts class. We became very close. We even had a crush on the same boy! My classmates and I were very protective of her. If anyone made fun of her we would stick up for her. At the end of the school year she moved and I cried and cried on the last day of school. I couldn't believe how attached I was to her.

As a teacher I seem to like the hard to like kids. It always seems like the odd kids gravitate towards me and I just love it. My favourite kid last year can be one of the most frustrating children in the primary division. My school librarian was lamenting on how he threw himself on the floor because there were too many books to choose from.

Do you know what my response was?

"Oh he's so cute! He used to do stuff like that when he was in my class. I would sit with him and rub his back for a little while and then he'd calm down."

The librarian looked at me like I was nuts.

I have no idea what all of this means. What I do know is that I am completely open to adopting an older child and that I'm open to a child with disabilities.

Needless to say, I'm phoning the adoption worker tomorrow. I know that we have to attend classes in order to become eligible to adopt in my province. We are going to have plenty of time to digest all of the different faces of adoption.

Oh what a ride this is going to be!

p.s. I'm starting the "room that was to be a nursery" clean out next week. I'm going to chronicle it here so I'm accountable. I'm going to need a lot of encouragement to get it done, it is very painful to be in there.

17 comments:

  1. I learned on an organizing show to just give yourself 15min to start a task......for example, cleaning out a baby room. Set your timer for 15min and start the job, when the timer 'dings' you can stop......but more then likely you will have gotten into a grove by then and keep going. Just give yourself 15min :)

    P.S. I am really excited for you!

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  2. I am glad that you are feeling good about everything. I think that adoption is somehow easier for women to accept then men (if that makes sense - at least in my family). I would say my husband is much more driven to have genetic children - it was something he needed in his life and therefore it was something that I needed because I love him - if that makes sense.

    I know a couple who adopted 3 kids through public adoption in Ontario (all older - I think the first was 3 and the second set was 5 or 6). And they all seem like fantastic kids when I met them.


    SOOO excited for you!!!!

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  3. I am really excited for your prospects for adoption. I think Duck is right in that husbands do take longer to embrace the idea. I can't wait to hear more about this journey. As for cleaning out the room, I am wishing you lots of strength to take this step. I like the idea of doing 15 min timers. I have a friend who's mother just passed away and has to clean out her house. She is setting a deadline for herself and also going to blog about it. So I think it's a great idea to put yourself on a schedule and also allow yourself to write and express what you are feeling about it. All of this feels like a great new step.

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  4. I'm glad you are taking these steps and are willing to be flexible about the type of adoption you are pursuing. Hopefully, Mr. JB will come around too!

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  5. I'm glad to hear that you are making some progress in getting started on the adoption process. I'll be praying that you and Mr. JB can come to a mutually acceptable decision on what children you'd be will to consider in adoption.

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  6. I think what you are considering is amazing. I know your Hubby has some reticence, but even with genetic children there are sill the possibilities of learning disabilities (that aren't related to drugs/alcohol). There just aren't any guarantees in life.

    Anyway, my real point in commenting is that I wanted to give you a real life example. My aunt & uncle (both devout Catholic) have fostered and adopted 3 kids through CAS in Ontario. The eldest is now 26ish and the youngest is around 8 years old. Eldest has fetal alcohol syndrome, there were issues as she grew up but she's now married, working and hoping to start her own family. The middle child is biracial and is simply amazing. She came from a rough situation but has no ill effects from that. She has thrived in their home. The youngest, a boy, had many issues to overcome. He still is a little behind others his age, but with the love he has received he has really flourished in their home.

    Adopting this way, you may not get an infant, but you get the rest of their lives. Good luck with whatever you decide.

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  7. This is so refreshing to hear! I can't even imagine how you feel for taking IF and choking it!

    It's so liberating! I think that is a GREAT calling. I've learned that adopting older children is difficult. But I can't imagine how we as God's older children are difficult as well. :)

    There is definitely a connection that I am seeing as we enter into this process, of God's love for me as the perfect parent, and the love I already have for these kids that are not known to me yet.

    It can be done and I'm so excited that you are knocking down walls! Climb JellyBelly climb!

    You can do it!!!

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  8. Oh and while you are knocking down walls how bout knocking down that word verification wall.... :) I'm on a mission to erradicate word verification one blog at a time! ;)

    xxoo

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  9. You know, my hubby is actually more interested in adopting an older child! When we starting getting past the "well, we'll just worry about it when the time comes" phase, the more we talked, the more I am surprised by how he feels. I had no idea. He doesn't care about race or gender, and thinks we could handle a child with some learning disabilities or even minor physical handicaps. His father used to teach disabled children who couldn't attend school, and also taught at a school for troubled youth, so I think he has a better understanding than I do of what it involves, and still he's up for the challenge! It just amazes me.
    I think as you go through the process, you and Mr. JB will discover what each of you thinks you can handle and hopefully come to a decision that will work for both of you.
    Good luck cleaning out the nursery!

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  10. Good for you for moving forward on the adoption stuff. I think that being armed with info will help you and hubby.

    I wanted to adopt a baby, too. No toddlers for me. We found out about our son when he was 7 months old, and thought would be able to get him when he was about a year old. He's now 2 years old, and we're still not much closer to getting him, but I wouldn't trade that sweet boy for anything (it's an international adoption from Vietnam that has been dragging on for more than a year).

    Sometimes the unexpected things in life makes you change your way of thinking. I now can't wait to start parenting a toddler.

    Good luck on this journey. I believe that there are children truly meant for their adoptive parents.

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  11. Good luck with this next phase.

    I was reading Mel's Creme de la Creme and found this blog (#82 on the list) and I thought of you because like you she is Catholic and being treated with NaPro Technology. She is also a Creighton Model Practitioner. And also like you, she and her husband have now turned to adoption. http://thiscrossiembrace.blogspot.com

    You're on her blogroll, so perhaps you are well aware of her. :)

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  12. How exciting!! I cannot wait to watch this story unfold, JB!

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  13. This is a really exciting part of your life, I'm really happy for you. All the best with your adoption. I'm sure your husband will feel more comfortable as you continue with the process.

    http://inbugsdrawers.blogspot.com

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  14. I think it means that you have a big heart. Maybe you are meant to have a special needs child. Not sure. But I have no doubt that you will be a Mom someday. :-D

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  15. Just wanted to say GET OUT OF BED and get to working on that room!!! Clean up, Clean up Jelly Belly in that room, Clean up , clean up, Jelly Belly tackle that room! :)

    Gotta love barney! :)

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  16. I have thought about this, too, for myself. And just because someone has had exposure to drugs/booze/whatever or has a learning disability does NOT mean they can't be happy, fulfilled adults. Someone like you, with your open heart and professional teaching background, would be an amazing advocate for a child who needs some extra support to thrive and come into their own.

    My guy and I have thought about this as an option for the future. Mr. JB may not be quite ready, but maybe if you do more research and eventually meet some families who have taken this approach, he may realize that this could work for you.

    I am so excited: You WILL be a mom, and a mighty fine one, too!

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  17. I love that you are recognizing your calling and following it. So very beautiful. Good luck with the room....you will get there, just do what you can, little by little.

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