Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Homestudy Interviews at Agency

First of all I want to say thank-you for all the lovely comments on my last post.  I really appreciate all your encouragement.

So we had our first homestudy interviews last week Wednesday (the 24th).

(Aside:  Isn't it hilarious when you've only heard someone's voice over the phone, and you form an image in your mind of what they look like, and then...yeah, the social worker looked nothing like we had imagined, lol!) 

So we met her when we got to the agency and sat down across the table from her in the little room that we've been in a number of times before (although never with her).  She was nice.  Told me not to be nervous.  That by this point we're pretty much approved; that if there was concerns they would've already been addressed by this point and we wouldn't have gotten this far; that basically she just needs to get a general picture of us.

She started off by asking us a few questions, how we met, what drew us to each other, etc, that we both answered.  She had our PAPQ's (Prospective Adoptive Parent Questionnaire's) in front of her that we'd each filled out thoroughly.  She had marked random things in them that she wanted to ask us more details about.  She started off with Hubby.

He gives really long, detailed answers to everything in life.  When he's nervous he gets even more long-winded.  Both of us know this and were prepared for it.  I made a very conscious effort to sit back and let him talk without interrupting because it's very easy for me to jump in and that doesn't help anyone.  So she asked him about random things on the PAPQ.  About an hour or so had passed at this point and I started wondering when my turn would come, lol.

Eventually she got to me.  I had been almost totally calm but now I got nervous.  Her first question threw me for a loop - she asked me what had drawn me to Hubby.  I had already answered this question at the beginning!  And I thought I had given a good answer!  I guess she forgot or something?  I stumbled and stuttered something out and then there was a long, awkward pause while I stared at the ceiling.  There were a lot of those moments during my interview!

Her interviewing style was very random.  We never knew where she was headed.  Serious alternating with light-hearted topics, and nothing along the timeline of our lives.  Well, sometimes it felt like we were going along a timeline, then other times, who knows.

I cried twice.  Very annoying.  I was not even in PMS and usually that is only when I cry.  I cried once when she asked how my epilepsy will affect raising children.  I happen to stress about this topic A LOT.  She was very nice about it and encouraging.  I cried again when I talked about my parents' relationship.  Ugh.  What I talked about wasn't even a big deal so I don't know why I cried.  

My interview was wa-a-ay shorter than Hubby's, and ended very abruptly, with "Well, you guys must be tired of answering questions by now.  When can we meet again?"  The whole thing was about 2 1/2 hours long.

One frustrating thing for me about the interviews was that Hubby's interview was the longest, and I stayed quiet and let him talk the entire time.  Then when it was my turn, Hubby answered a lot of the questions for me.  Later that evening I finally told him how I felt about that, and THANKFULLY I was able to speak gently and he was able to take it well, and all is forgiven and good now.  For our next interview (at our home) he says to remind him just before she comes, so that he remembers to let me do my own talking :)  Sweet man that I have!

I am not nearly as nervous now for when she comes to our home.  Of course I wish our renos were finished and that our house was more baby-proof, but from what I've heard, basically the social worker just needs to see that you have a home!

Maybe for our next interviews, we will be asked more about parenting, why we are adopting, etc, since our interviews at the agency seemed to consist mostly of our parents' relationships, with a few other random things thrown in.

Altogether it was not a bad interview.  She was nice and really that's all I can ask for.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Frustrated But Oh Well

So first homestudy meeting was supposed to be, at our house, on Saturday the 20th.

Social worker called on Friday to say she unexpectedly had to work at her other job and had to postpone. 

Second homestudy meeting (now the first), at the agency, was supposed to be today the 22nd.

Social worker called this morning to say she is sick and has to reschedule. 

Granted, she sounds really sick.

Planned to reschedule for tomorrow the 23rd but I had my doubts she'd be better by then so it is rescheduled for Wednesday the 24th.

Hoping it'll happen.

Still don't know when the one at our house will be.  She says we'll reschedule that one at our meeting on Wednesday.

Feeling frustrated and let down.  But she is very nice about it all, saying she doesn't want to undermine the importance of doing the homestudy. And really, these things are out of her control, so I'm trying to be understanding.

Trying...

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Never Mind

All that stress for nothing.  Yesterday (Friday) morning the social worker called to say she had to postpone.  She has a regular, full-time job, and our agency contracts out to the social worker, so she just does this in her spare time.  Apparently her regular job rarely asks her to work weekends, but this weekend they did.  So the homestudy is not happening today like originally planned.  We are still going to be having the one at the agency on Monday like planned, and then we will reschedule the one for at our home.  As of now I have no idea when that will be.  Of course I was disappointed and frustrated.  The house was almost perfectly clean and I know it won't stay that way.  And I had this (silly, I know) dream of being approved and waiting by Mother's Day, which probably won't happen now.  But we have a little more time to work on the house now (we're still renovating and unpacking) so that's nice, I guess.  And now we can get to know her before she comes into our home.  Trying to find the positives here!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Homestudy Day After Tomorrow

The social worker is coming over the day after tomorrow to see our home and start interviewing us, and I am just a wreck.  I don't think I've been getting enough sleep which doesn't help.  Just stressed and crying and arguing with Hubby about pointless things.  Then there are parts of the days where I actually accomplish a bunch, in terms of cleaning.  And we've discussed some of my fears of what questions she'll ask.  But lately...just, ugh.  Feeling so anxious about it all.  And to think I'd been looking forward to this for years!  Ha!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Currently

Looking forward to...Tuesday, April 16, which is Hubby's & my 8th anniversary.  We're going to go out to eat.  At the end of the month we are going away for a long weekend.

Thankful for...the melting snow.  I can actually see grass in our backyard.  Keep in mind this is the first time we've seen our lawn, since we moved here in the middle of winter.

Craving...the TastiTaters I have in the toaster oven, which I am planning on eating with fresh salsa and sour cream.  Here's to hoping the first fresh salsa I've ever made turns out good!

Going to...tonight we are going to a dinner theatre that a couple relatives will be acting in.  Not sure how I feel about a murder mystery being performed in a church, though.  But the play & the acting is bound to be very entertaining.

Wishing...I knew how much of the homestudy is going to be interviews of  us and how much of it is she actually going to be checking how child-proof our home is.

Surprised by...Just looked at my Lilypie ticker and realized it has been exactly one year since we applied for adoption!  Of course there was a lot more leading up to that (see my timeline).  I had hoped to be approved by this point, but our homestudy is in 8 days and I'm hopinghopinghoping that we'll be approved by Mother's Day.  It would feel like a Mother's Day I could actually celebrate :)

Friday, April 5, 2013

Changes

So back in January Hubby got a new job.  I wrote about it here.  Well, on Monday he came home at lunch time...and stayed home.  He'd been let go.  Turns out following the rules is not a characteristic to be desired in someone who works for a trucking company!  Of course we were shocked and devastated and all that for that day.  We prayed and decided to be thankful.

We talked a lot.  He had to decide by Wednesday whether he would take his old position (driving truck) at this company or not as they were terminating his position as fleet manager but offering him his old job back.  Ultimately he came to the conclusion he could not work for a company where honesty and compassion are a liability.  I was much relieved with this conclusion!

So the plan (and we know God has His own plans, so we'll see how this goes, haha) is that Hubby is going to not work for now, and finish his flight training instead.  He's a pilot, but hasn't been able to work much as one.  (He worked as a flight instructor for a while a number of years ago but that paid next to nothing.)  He needs to get a couple more ratings, and that costs a lot.  (He already has lots of hours.)  Thankfully we were able to put money aside for flight training when we sold our house & property.  We just didn't know when he'd be able to make use of it.  Well, here's an opportunity!  No job, no kids!  So the flight training will take about 2 months.  After that he will apply at places that fly commuters or charters.  While he's waiting to hear from them (pilots aren't in great demand) he will go back to driving truck (at a different company) since truckers are always needed.

We have to cut down on our spending, which kinda sucks. We lived so long drowning in debt, living paycheque to paycheque, and borrowing money, that I am terrified we will go back to that again.  Hubby has assured me it won't come to that and I believe him.  But these last few months since we sold our house & property and got out of debt and quit relying on others have been so freeing that I don't like the idea of holding back again.  But it won't be nearly as bad as last time.  We are in a lot better shape financially than we were!

So, as you know, our homestudy is scheduled for April 20 and 22.  Our Dear Birthparent letter is complete as well as our questionnaires.  So this new change left me confused and worried.  Should we take all that back and change it before our homestudy?  Should we change it to say Hubby is unemployed but in school?  Who would want parents where BOTH are unemployed?!  Should we - please, no - put off our homestudy until Hubby is all done his schooling and then we can revise our papers to say he's a pilot or a truck driver?  So I emailed our agency to ask these questions and she suggested we still complete the homestudy as scheduled - phew! - and only make changes to our paperwork when Hubby is done his schooling.  Sounds like a plan to me!

Although unexpected changes are stressful, I'm happy Hubby has the opportunity to follow his dream of flying for a living!