One month since our home study was completed and we’ve inquired on lots of kids, received a handful of responses back, and enjoyed our first matching event. We’ve already experienced the excitement of a possible match swiftly followed disappointment mixed with joy of learning a relative for that child had come forward. Disappointment that we won’t be considered right now as possible parents for her, but also joy that she has not been totally abandoned by her biological family.
I don’t know what to say about the whole process except that it is very weird. So foreign to anything I knew or expected an adoption process to be. My only real life adoption experience was watching friends adopt a baby internationally. Sure, we talked to people who had been through other types of adoptions (even foster-adopt), but no one had adopted a waiting child in the US.
There are more than 100,000 waiting children in the US. Their parental rights have already been terminated and unless adopted these children will grow up in foster and group homes until they age out of the system at 18. Of the millions of orphans worldwide 100,000 of them live in my own country. We met 12 of them today at the matching event. Twelve orphaned children. Precious children. Right here in Brevard County.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to jump on the orphan pity bandwagon and try to coerce you into adopting and make you feel like an insensitive horrible person if you don’t. Not having a Mom and a Dad is a really big heart breaking deal, but I’d rather have you want these children because they are amazing, not because you feel sorry for them.
What I will tell you is that I had an absolute blast roller skating and playing laser tag with some pretty cool kids! These children - the ones who showed off their skating skills, raced Ben around the rink, pinned me into a corner in laser tag and kept shooting me every time my light came back on, the talkative outgoing kid who gave us some of his candy winnings before leaving, the shy kid who hung back but reminded both Ben and I of ourselves, the pizza loving Michael Jackson dancing kid, the teenager who I thought I wasn't able to connect with at all, but melted my heart when she made sure to smile and wave goodbye to me, these kids – they are the US waiting children!
One day one of them, one of 100,000 of them, will become our child. One will become part of our family just as if they were born to us. How incredible is that!