Number 1 question in adopting: How long will this take? When will you bring your kids home? How long will you wait for kids?
I. Don’t. Know.
Most of the time it seems that people must think I’m holding something back or keeping this secret to myself. Unfortunately people, adoption is not a pregnancy. It does not come with a due date and a child arriving 2 weeks +/- around that date. It is adoption. It takes a long time. And it is oftentimes totally unpredictable.
I got a e-mail on Friday from the adoption agency that they are seeing longer wait times for non-special needs children. They are quoting wait times of 2-3 years for non special needs children under the age of 7.
So what does that even mean?
I. Don’t. Know.
To the best of my knowledge I will be adopting (hopefully 2) children with mild-moderate/correctable special needs. Now I could write an entire book about what that phrase means, but I won’t. I know what I can and can’t handle. I have let the people who need to know these things know what they are in detail. Most importantly, though, is that every child is unique and I will know what I can or cannot handle when I see a referral with some more detailed information on it. Now this fact should reduce my wait time. Also in the potentially-reducing-wait-time category is I’m (more than) open to siblings.
In the not-sure-if-it-affects-my-wait-time category: My approval is for children up to age 5. When I started I was told that this may reduce my wait time. Based on the e-mail on Friday, I’m not sure that is the case any longer.
My approval is only for girls. This will increase my wait time. Or so I’m told.
So now the wait time answer resembles an algebra problem: 2-3 years minus siblings minus special needs to the power of age up to 5 years plus female only equals?????
I. Don’t. Know. Algebra was never my strong suit.
My father tells me: “Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, reality falls somewhere in the middle.” I would say, absolute best-case scenario is I see a referral within a year after the dossier is formally registered. Worst-case scenario: I wait the upper end of the quoted wait time: 3 years. Meaning a wait of 1-3 years. So let’s say: about 2 years.
I think I’ll wait about 2 years for a referral. Maybe. Clear as mud, right?