by Pierre le Roux
Ok folks, I have some groundbreaking news to share with you. My husband and I have been debating when the right time would be to make this news public and we decided that the time has come. We have already shared this news with some of our close friends, family and employers and it is only fair that I now share it with you, my loyal readers (all 10 of you!). Before you grab a paper bag to start hyperventilating, there really will be no need for that. Except if you were already having a panic attack because you cannot handle anticipation, in which case grab the paper bag, nobody will judge you. Also, I am not quitting my blog, getting a sex change, fleeing the country, being arrested by Zimbabwean or Russian authorities or getting a divorce. And neither one of us is dying. This is good news people! We are adopting! And no, we are not adopting an Alpaca or my much coveted Gay Donkey. We are adopting a baby.
The adoption process was set in motion about a month ago. After a lot of discussion and some emotional theatrics, hubby and I finally came to realize that we are in the right place in our lives and marriage to expand our family. After all, I have been overcompensating for my need to nurture for a while now: our elaborate menagerie is evidence of this. I mean, how many animals can one person acquire before someone says “Adopt a child already!” And this is exactly what my mother-in-law did (coincidentally, she suffers from the same foot-in-mouth disease I suffer from). In the end she was right, and I did come to realize that I do have a deep seated desire to be a parent, so hubby and I took the first tangible steps towards becoming parents. We contacted PROCARE, a local private adoption agency that recently assisted friends of ours in adopting their son.
Now, anyone who has ever adopted will tell you the adoption process involves a lot of red tape. And with red tape I mean a shit load of paper work and physical and psychological assessments falling short of submitting to DNA testing and an anal probe. Currently, hubby and I are completing phase 1 of the 4 phase process. We have completed all our paper work, obtained medical assessment reports, got tested for HIV (which was optional), obtained mental health reports, obtained our Police Clearances stating that we don’t have criminal records and will be getting our National Child Protection Register clearances this week which will state that we are not pedophiles or have ever been flagged as being a danger to children. We have also successfully completed our first meeting with our Social Worker and the head of the Adoption Agency.
Our first meeting with them was rather nerve-racking. Both hubby and I were rather tense, not knowing what to expect and being scared that we would be turned away. There are some agencies that do not help gay couples. Luckily for us PROCARE is not one of them. They explained that they only take in a certain number of applications from gay couples per year and that we were the last intake for 2013. They do this in order to provide an equal opportunity for their prospective parents to get placements. Also, it takes a little longer for gay couples and single people to get placements due to social prejudices, which is understandable. Our first meeting was emotional and I did get teary eyed a couple of times during that meeting as did hubby. I didn’t feel that emotional since the time, a while ago, when I thought I was suffering from early onset male menopause. Except this time I did not have hot flashes and I got emotional about babies and birthmothers not the lack of air-conditioning and weight gain.
During this phase we also completed our adoption profile. For those of you who don’t know what that is, an adoption profile is a book that you put together with photos and some writing that introduces you to the prospective birthmothers and is the first impression she gets of you. The profile is also what they use to decide who the adoptive parents of their babies will be. So yes, you guessed it! The profile is super important and hubby and I have been stressing that ours sucks. I even had nightmares about it! And if your profile sucks then you are screwed; and not in a good way – more in a “you will be childless forever” way! Needless to say we have redone our book so many times to date, trying to make it as reflective of who we are, who our family is, our home is like, what we can offer a child and why we would make good parents. It came close to driving us totally insane until sometime last week when we had an epiphany.
During our first meeting at PROCARE we were shown a couple of examples of Profile Books and when hubby and I discussed those profiles we were underwhelmed by most of them. Also, after doing some research on the internet we came to the conclusion – fuck it! Our profile book should be reflective of who we are, it must be authentically us and should not be made to live up to some unrealistic expectation we created in our own minds. The Profile must not be perfect. The Profile must be us. This way, the right birthmother will love our book, she would look at it and feel that we will be the best parents to entrust her child to and we will get the right baby for us. It’s better to have a book that one birthmother will think is awesome rather than having one that ten birthmothers will think is just OK. So last week hubby sent our book to the printers and we decided that the version that is being printed is the version we are going to stick with. We might still end up childless, and that would really suck. I mean how am I then going to explain my weight gain? But I digress…
Next we are about to enter Phase 2 of the adoption process. This phase involves more psychological assessments, more interviews, reference checks, socio-economic profiling, a house visit and a panel interview; all of which we are prepared for and looking forward to. However, one thing I realized recently is that I have to work on my potty mouth. Words like “fuck, shit, asshole”, and a few others, need to be replaced with words like “fudge, bollocks and butthole”. I am not sure how this will work, but I will try my darndest to stop cursing and it is going to be hard as fudge! Or maybe if I just say those naughty words in my head and not out loud it could also work and be less offensive and more child friendly… I will let you know how that goes.
Phase 3 and 4 of the adoption process are the placement phase of the baby with the adoptive parents and all the legal aspects that goes along with that. Phase 2 and 3 can happen simultaneously which makes it rather hard to plan things. In this regard we have a lot of questions and we’ve only got answers for some of them. For instance, when is the right time to prepare the nursery, how long will we have to make the final preparations to receive our child (2 weeks), how old will the child be when we get him/her (2 to 3 months old), and the list of questions goes on. I will keep you updated on the progress of our adoption on my blog. Seeing as this was just the breaking of the news to y’all some future posts will have more details. In the mean time if you want to send us baby or nursery stuff, you are more than welcome to. Or just send us cash. I am sure it could be tax deductible. Or send us some advice, it’s free and I am sure we are going to need plenty of that. We are pregnant people, only not physically, but I have gained some baby weight. Because I can and things like this happen during pregnancy. Don’t judge me.
Till next time.