Thursday, November 20, 2008

classy

So we went to our class the other night. We were worried about 2 things before we went. One, that there would only be like, 1 other couple there (awkward) and two, that their would be role-playing games (the most awkward.) Luckily neither of these fears came to pass. The room was packed, and their was only a brief period at the beginning where we were forced to converse with complete strangers :-)
So the class was Talking to Your Children about Adoption from the Adult Adoptee Perspective. That last part is the key. From the adult adoptee perspective. We had a panel of 3 adult people who were adopted as babies. Two of them were white women adopted by white families and one was a black man adopted by a white family.The biggest thing you take from this class is that you start talking to your child about their adoption from birth (or from when you first get them.) That way it is never strange, never a "gotcha" moment. It's just something they always knew. Side note: we were talking to a girl last night whose boyfriend found out he was adopted when he was 35! Can you imagine?
The other thing we took from this class is that, while it is important to talk to your children about adoption (and specifically in our case, to keep their Ethiopian heritage alive) you don't talk about it every day of their lives. I think that is something that gets a little lost in this adoption process. You're not going to spend every day considering how adoption has affected your life. You just live your life. For the people on this panel, they all said that yes, they knew they were adopted, but it wasn't like they sat around thinking about it all the time. It just is what it is. And to them, as children, it was no big deal.

Useful class, good information, no role-playing games. All in all a success.
Now we just have to take 4 more classes to complete our homestudy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

schooled

We have our first adoption class tonight. Talking to Children About Adoption.
Should be interesting.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

the homestudy....

has happened! It's done. It was so short, we barely made it to 3 and a half hours. I guess we're easy :-)

The past few days have been a rush of cleaning and form-filling and a little bit of panic that for some reason she would walk into our apartment and say, what, you want to bring a baby into this incredibly unsafe unchildproofed home? Are yall crazy? Not that our home is unsafe. It's not childproofed yet, but we're still a year out from having a baby. It's just that, because we have to get this stupid foster-parenting license, we thought maybe our home was going to be judged a little more harshly than it was. In fact, the home inspection portion was literally just a walk through, much like I would give one of you who had not been to my home before. As in, here is our bedroom and here is the living room. That kind of thing. The only thing she wanted to make sure of is that we have a working smoke detector. Which we do.

The bulk of the homestudy was just the 3 of us sitting at the table while she asked us questions. These questions had to do with us, our backgounds and families, our ideas on child-rearing and adoption and parenting adopted children. It was very laid back and, for the most part, there were no wrong answers. She is an adoptive parent, herself, and let us know that she was not exactly fond of the process when she went through it.

So now, she has to write the homestudy, which I think she said takes about a month, and then she has to send it to FRC and Gladney and us for any changes or corrections. Then she will finalize it.

So, that's that. It's a great relief to have it done. Now we can just get to work on our dossier.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

homestudy.....

tomorrow!
wish us luck!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

some thoughts on obama

I know its been a while since I blogged, and truthfully, not much has happened. We were in Minneapolis last weekend visiting some friends and Matt had to work this past Thursday so I just ran about a million errands. Pretty lame.

But I wanted talk for a minute about what happened last week. This is not a political blog post. This is not about Right or Left, Red or Blue. This is about what I felt on Tuesday Nov. 4.
I wasn't thinking much about the implications of the day, to be quite honest. We had already voted a couple of weeks ago, so there would be no long line for me to stand in. I was more concerned with being deathly slow at work really. But when I got up and I got on the ol' internets, I began looking at the photographs. The pictures of the lines. And the pictures of the people in the lines. And the pictures of people shedding tears. They shed tears, because here they were, voting for a black man to be the president of the United States of America. And they never thought that day would come. And it made me cry too. In the ugliness of the last two months of this race, I guess I forgot what this would mean. It means that in this time, in this moment, a black man was given a job that no black man has ever been given before because we as a country felt that he was the right man for the job. It wasn't just black people and young people that elected Obama. It was blue collar people and it was rural people, city folk and country folk, Americans who maybe had to put their inner voice aside to do what they never thought they'd do. Vote for a black man as the President of the United States of America.
And I thought about what this means to me. Next year (hopefully) Matt and I are going to welcome a child into our lives. And this child will be black. And I will be able to say to him or her, when you were born, and when you came to this country, the President of the United States resembled you. And that means something to me.
I don't deify President-Elect Obama. I do not think he is a perfect man. He has a lot of work to do and many promises have been made. As Matt says, it starts now. Let's see what he can do.
I had an interesting conversation with a client the other day. A very nice man visiting from Fort Worth, TX. He said to me, well, he wasn't my guy, but he's my guy now. It gave me just a little bit of hope that this country does not have to be so divided, that we don't have to bow down to the politics of fear.
Maybe, when my children are adults, this won't seem so novel. I don't know. Racism isn't in danger of disappearing overnight or anytime soon. But I guess I am just a little more hopeful now. And that is what November 4, 2008 meant to me.