Step One – Check

Last night we had our first huge step in our adoption. Its amazing that exactly one year into our journey we scheduled our home study and last night we completed it.

Everyone kept asking us if we were nervous and wishing us luck. We definitely appreciated all of the thoughts during the process, but honestly, we weren’t nervous. Jason and I know that we will be great parents to a child or children. We know that our house is safe and we are more than capable of caring for another human being. My personal biggest fear through this whole entire home study was the fact we had to invite a complete stranger into our home during a global pandemic!

In order to feel safe with this situation we asked if she could tour the house with a mask on and then we would complete the in person interview outside around a fire. It was brilliant, it was chilly so the fire was perfect. It was also a more relaxed atmosphere to dig into details.

We really didn’t know what to expect, we had heard many different details about what the home study would involve but honestly, it was much more simple than we imagined. The paperwork on the other hand, was completely intense. Here is a list of paperwork we needed to complete and a bit about them.

Application – 2 pages of very basic info, Child Abuse History Record, Sex Offender Registry Search, Acknowledgement of Firearms Safety Requirements, VECHS Waiver Agreement, 5 hours of training and the signed contract.

Personal Inventory – This one was a doozy, it is 15 pages of questions ranging from information about our home and neighborhood, our family, pets, social history, marriage and so much more. It asked about our relationship with our parents through upbringing, feelings about infertility, expectant parents, parenting styles and what we are looking for in a newborn.

Financial Statement – This asked very detailed information about our financial history, debts and assets.

References – We had to ask 5 people or couples that have known us for some time to fill out the reference form. Also, very simple questions.

Employment Verification – Just one simple form for our employers to confirm our standing and employment status.

Medical Report – Just one page asking basic questions to our doctors about our medical status and life expectancy.

Pediatrician Report – A simple form looking for basic status of Tyler’s health and immunization status.

Insurance and Guardianship – Proof of health insurance, life insurance and whom our guardian would be of the adopted child.

Criminal Background Check – We had to go to the police station to receive a local background check, it took a whole 2 minutes to complete. We also had to go get fingerprinted to run our prints in the FBI database.

Affidavit Good Moral Character – This is just as it sounds, we had to get it notarized but aside from that, it was no bid deal.

Additional forms – Drivers Licenses, Birth Certificates or Passports, Marriage Certificate, Divorce Decree (when applicable), 1040 from last year, and our pet vaccination records.

These forms took well over 10 hours to complete but in the whole grand scheme of things, that is just a blink of an eye and it’s already over.

The agent arrived at our house, I met her outside with the dogs so they weren’t quite so obnoxious upon entry into our home. She then asked for a tour of the house. This took all of about 2-3 minutes. She did walk into each room but asked very few questions and we moved on. We were told we had to be sure to have a fire hydrant in the kitchen, that our fire detectors would be tested and we had to have a carbon monoxide detector. I was told that this process is a judgement but I wanted to be sure it was as true as possible so I changed nothing from any other Thursday. The items there were left out were left out because if it were any other day I wouldn’t have taken the time to clean them up. I did my normal two loads of laundry, I didn’t vacuum or dust, I didn’t ask Tyler to do anything different from his normal behavior or to do anything to his room. I wanted our agent to get the clearest picture of our family as possible because in the end, that is exactly what a child would be coming into.

When we sat outside we just chatted, there wasn’t anything uncomfortable about the entire process. She asked about what we will do for childcare, how COVID has affected our jobs and plan for a child. We talked about simple things like our family trip to North Carolina and what drew us to each other. She spoke to Tyler for a few minutes asking him how he felt about a baby joining our family, what his plans are for his future and what life is like in our home.

I guess I am confused how someone would be nervous about this process, if you have something to hide, maybe you shouldn’t bring a baby into your home. But if you can be real, true and honest, then don’t worry about any of it. These social workers have seen it all, they have heard it all. Realize that we all got to this same position for one reason or another. The social worker is just ensuring that your home is safe and that you are able to care for another tiny human.

We decided to delay sending the contract to our adoption agency and payment until the home study was complete. But that box is now checked and we plan to send it today! We cannot thank you all enough for your love and support during this. We are still a long way away from meeting our goal and can use all the help we can get. Our coordinator with the adoption agency has told us there are so many birth mothers looking to place their babies that we could be matched within 2 weeks. Of course this is a soonest case scenario but its very real and we need another $15,000 to make this happen.

If you can help, please select this link and support our journey.

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