Late last week we received our Foster Home license from the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. In order to adopt a child in Illinois we have to be licensed as foster parents, so it was pretty significant to get this piece of paper in the mail. The main criteria for this license was the completion of our home study. We’d heard from a few people that the home study can be fairly challenging as the social worker asks about issues related to family and marriage. Someone told us their home study process was like having a stranger hang out in their bedroom! This certainly wasn’t our experience at all. Either we had a super kind social worker or we’re just used to being introspective about the kinds of things he asked about. Regardless, the home study shouldn’t deter anyone from considering adoption.
We arrived at this late stage of the adoption process quicker than most because it seemed we may be a good fit with a particular birth mother. Because we want to completely respect this mother and the complex and sensitive decisions she is making, I’ve not been at liberty to share much about this situation on the blog. And that’s how it needs to stay for now.
Here’s what I can share: Waiting is hard! As we have thought, prayed, and talked about this baby we have continually been reminded of our powerlessness. There is nothing we can do except to wait for this birth mother, or another birth mother in the future, to make some difficult decisions. We’re aware that our anxiety must pale in comparison to those mothers who are choosing adoption. Even so, it’s been hard to know how to experience these past few weeks as the emotions we’re feeling are many.
Interestingly enough, this season of waiting and wondering has coincided almost perfectly with Lent. It’s felt enormously appropriate to experience this process during a time of fasting and reflection. And now it’s Good Friday and I’m anticipating Easter Sunday more viscerally than ever. Reading through the crucifixion accounts in the Gospels this week, it’s been surprisingly easy to feel something of the loss and confusion experienced by Jesus’ friends and family at his death. I too am ready for resolution.
Whether or not you share my faith in the resurrected Jesus, I wish you an Easter weekend filled with genuine and beautiful hope. Adoption is teaching me a lot about that too! Happy Easter.