Wow, since all I do is sleep eat and work as of late its surprising that I even managed to get some progress on our homestudy. 

  • References
  • Order New Birth Certificate (T)
  • Find Birth Certificate (C)
  • Marriage Licence
  • Registration
  • Police Checks
  • Fingerprints Sent
  • Passport Renewal
  • Adoption Questionnaire
  • Home Safety Checklist

Work has obviously been extremely busy and painful for the past week, but at the same time it does go by fast, but you work like a dog the entire time, and “clients” are not anymore pleasant, but at the same time the OT is racking in and I have enough CT time saved to make my own 4 on 4 off, even if management won’t offer us one.  My only worry is that we won’t have this settled anytime soon and it reflects badly on our homestudy. 

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For getting us started on our Forever Family Fund. 

Woohooo!!!

Please don’t hesitate to donate! The cost is enormous! about 55 thousand dollars Canadian, so every little bit can help. Please do not send us gifts on our birthdays, anniversary, or any other time.

Thank you to my mom for sending us the gift of 140$ USD.

Last Wednesday we traveled to Hogtown to meet a bunch of strangers and talk about our chances of adopting from the (other) land of hockey and blond babes.  We entered a non descript small office at the edge of a strip business mall.  Pictures flooded the eyes as soon as you walked in, pinned to the drywall and cork-boards from every angle, maps of Canada and Russia lined the empty spaces where there were no pictures and the rest of the space was filled with bookcases.  No need to paint the walls, there is love covered all over them in smiles and chubby cheeks.  I have to be honest in saying I was relieved to see that the office was so humble, yet warm, meaning the big money spent is not going to hire designers to put the customer in a “buying” mood.  We went through the process, step by step And I was very confident in the agency by the time we left.

Since then our lives have flipped upside down yet again.  Bryan our oldest dog at 2.5 years has been diagnosed with Lupus.   We have been giving him antibiotics for a urinary tract infection and some prednisone to stop the flare up from the lupus.  He really is the sweetest dog you will ever meet.  He is improving a little on the prednisone, so I am hoping we can keep up with it for a few years not months.
Love

 Still on the adoption front, we have our first homestudy interview tomorrow.  So there is a lot of things to do.  Wash the carpets, dust everything, put things away.  Tidy up.  So I will be running ragged trying to have everything semi normal in this house for the Social Workers visit. 

I think I have figured the customary donation that I wish to give the orphanage when we go to Russia.  A friend had mentioned that she went to an adoption seminar and that the couple had said this 13 year old girl was always reaching into peoples photos, hoping to get noticed so that she too could be adopted someday.  We can’t give this girl a home, or the commitment of adopting her as we are so young ourselves, but I would like to help out the oldest girl at the orphanage.  Something that would empower her and allow her to make something of herself, and realise that she has the self worth even if its not with a family overseas. 

There was something that hit me this week, something profound and unusually calming.  Something that felt like a hand on back with a warm embrace saying that yes it will be tough, but everything will come out ok.  It was in the form of a smile, and a giggle of a little girl. She was returning with her foster family from Orlando, there were 4 kids.  Laughing and enjoying every moment.  A girl in her teens, the hardest years of a girls life, greet me with confidence and a smile that made you forget in a split moment about the tracheal tube she had coming from her neck.  The little girl in the stroller giggling and all too happy to show you her latest family edition, a stuffed Mickey Mouse, giggles and says he has more hair than she does, because she has only a little peach fuzz left from her chemo treatment.  They were returning from Orlando for Childrens Wish foundation. The foster parents, super human people, opening their hearts and their homes and sharing every moment to make these kids happy.  They can bond, they can laugh.  They have become a family.  I had to ask, be nosey for just a moment.  Her secret to bonding with a child that isn’t hers, she placed her hand on my back and said, the moment you hold them, they are yours. 

We received reply from Hungary that the children up for adoption for Canadians are 5 years of age and older and are not healthy.  In other words, they are the unadoptable children from other International agencies.

So we are sticking with Russia. My new barbie smell is fading fast.

Our Barbie box was opened :-o!!  Yesterday when I contacted the agency, She tells me that a second family also interested in adopting from Hungary was told that it wasn’t possible to adopt from there.  WTF?  MIL had called and spoke to someone, but she didn’t get a name.  I was dismayed, but, we were told yes but I think we should safely get a name and the official requirements from Hungary to continue at this point.  So I wrote up a fax and had it translated and sent it to the Hungarian Office.  Hoping to hear from them soon. 

On the homestudy front we have our first appointment on February 7th.  OK no panick there, she is coming to the house too.  Oh god, I have barely scratched one thing off my list and she is coming to the house.  No worries.  eek!!

 On the Bryan front, he seems to be doing well.  He hasn’t been jumping like mad, and at least there hasn’t been any screaming sessions. 

Why is it that when you mention your adopting  the trendy response seems to be that you’ll suddenly be cured of infertility and be pregnant even before the paper is sealed and delivered to your agency.  “As soon as you sign the papers and begin the process, you’ll see!”.. “It happened to a friend of mine, they decided to adopt and wham next thing she knew they were pregnant” “oh you’ll get pregnant next month now”.  If adoption did cure infertility, then we would all have started the process years ago and no child would ever be adopted because of infertility.    Only 6% of couples who begin the adoption process, get pregnant. I don’t think signing papers cures medical conditions.  We know you mean well, but instead of wishing upon us a pregnancy that will just end in heartache, wish us a happy healthy child to love, regardless of whos womb he came from. 

Anyone who knows me, knows I am very patriotic.  If I wasn’t I wouldn’t do the job I do.  I will at any time stand up for my country.  But I often feel like she has betrayed me for my many years of devotion.  I can’t help but make a snide comment or laugh at our Prime Ministers constant remarks about putting Canadian Families first, when this government is left in the pre electicity era on assisted reproduction and alternative parenting.  Its almost a slap in the face for those couples struggling to make ends meet.  The government uses the excuse of poor birth rates in Canada to pump up immigration, yet they do nothing to assist couples who don’t have that “oops” kid.  Couples undergoing fertility treatments in Canada are rarely covered by government health care, or private employment benefits.  One round of IVF usually takes the toll of $10,000,  the exception to having this proceedure done is if both fallopian tubes are blocked, at which point the province will cover 3 IVF treatments.  I see many of us praying for blocked tubes.  So after we have been shaken for every last penny, taxed to the wazoo.  I was naturally pissed off to watch Gobal News reporting on Canada’s first sextuplets in Vancouver and having the GALL to say that if this couple had IVF , that they should be paying for the birth of these children as well!!  Why don’t we cap a limit on welfare parents, after 2 children you must pay for the birth of your third, fourth, fith, sixth.   Heck why stop there! Smokers, pay for your cancer treatments, Diabetics, pay for your angioplasty since you ate yourself into this.  I know I will not be watching Global from now on. 

So after we have spent over $60,000 in treatments, we are looking at adoption.  It was only last year that the McGuinty government here in Ontario finally waivered the $960.00 adoption finalization fee, but we are still paying $30,000.00 to adopt, of which much of this money goes back to the government in immigration sponsorship fees, paying federal, provincial and municipal governments to apostillize documents, and paying social workers.  There are no federal grants, loans or programs in place to assist couples unless they wish to adopt a child with special needs in Ontario.  I guess its too much to ask for a healthy child after all the IF heartbreak.   I was checking my benefits for adoption leave, which one would assume are the same as maternity leave.  Nope no luck, its 50 weeks max, I am covered by EI but my top up ends at the 36 week mark, and my spouse cannot take any of this time or it comes from my 36 week alottment.  But if I had that “oops” baby I would get that full year with my top up right through the 52 weeks.  So much for putting families first Mr Harper.

Adoption is expensive, our entire costs for adopting from Hungary will most likely run in the thirty thousand dollar range and then we still have to buy kid stuff!.  We have opened our “chip in” account for our Our Forever Family Fund.  The link will permanently be in our left sidebar, when you click it you should come to our intro page and you can see how much money we have raised so far.   C and I are trying to raise money to cover the travel cost to Hungary for 7 weeks with our chip in.  The fund is there for friends and family who are so kind and supportive and chip in in the easiest way possible.  All you need is a paypal account and the transaction is secure.  We are requesting that birthday and anniversary gifts be in a donation to our fund.   Thanks again for everyone that has been so supportive of C and I.

C is teaching a CPR class today, and I work until midnight, so 1am when he is snuggled in bed is never a time for pondering life altering questions.  I couldn’t gather the strength to call him and have to form the words from my mouth, so I chickened out and sent him the text instead.”Okay so Hungary is open to Canadians adopting, the children are between 3 and 7.  Do you want to adopt a boy at the age of 3?” I took a deep breath.. my palms sweaty holding my blackberry in my hand.  I waited for his reply.  What feels like 2 hours was really only a matter of moments before my blackberry sprung to life.   I was ready to tell him the pros and cons of adopting an older child, cons being we miss the baby experience, the diaper changing the late nights, the many firsts most parents cherish, the bonding issues.  Then I came up with the pros, we miss the diaper changes, the late nights, the highchairs, cribs, dog-proofing, the ever changing car seats, mega strollers, baby stuff that if we were to adopt a younger child would be used for about 4 months and then turfed.  The pro that he can walk, talk, and the potty training is done, we eat the same foods, the kids in the neighbourhood are around the same age, we can begin the fun stuff now, the sports, hockey, and swimming, learning, exploring and the understanding.  I closed my eyes and opened the message.  Just one word.  “YES!!”

On a side note, I took Bryan to the vet this morning as for the past few days when he jumped on the bed or ran up the stairs he has done something to himself and ends up yelping and screaming in pain, requires holding and consoling for 10 minutes as he cries, shakes and whimpers.  It is so heartbreaking to see, and rather frightening to hear (I worry the neighbours think we are beating him).  Well our Bryan true to form mention vet and he is “all better now, thanks”.  Isn’t he doing cartwheels and all tail wags for the ladies behind the counter, doesn’t he show the vet that he is as limber as a Russian gymnast, allowing the Dr. to manipulate his joints in every fashion with a look of ease and smug satisfaction upon his face.  I am sure he was laughing all the way home after I paid $45 to waste the vets time yet again.  I think he has a crush on the Vets assistant.  So Bryan is on ‘doggie rest’ no running, jumping, major walks or playing for 2 weeks.  We are hopeful that it will get better.