Monday, October 18, 2010

15 More Questions

We had to fill out ANOTHER piece of paper today. I know, I know, there will be more yet still on the horizon coming down the pipe and so on. I'm just thinking that pretty much every question on this paper we already answered. In triplicate. And had notarized. On paper that was hand-spun by South American pygmy monks who only speak one week a year.

Ok, so they speak one month a year. Excuse me for the exaggeration.

Wanna know what they asked? Wanna know what we answered?

Well, alright!!

Describe any new information since home study. Nothing new to report

Please describe each other’s strengths. Chris’s greatest strengths are his patience and his ability to get along with everyone. He’s very patient and hasn’t met someone yet that he can’t warm up to. Christina’s greatest strengths are her organizational skills and her willingness to do things for others. Christina is very organized, and is always stepping up to help out her friends and family.

Why were you interested in these children? We are interested in J and W for several reasons. J likes to dance and do gymnastics and Christina was very involved with those when she was younger. W likes to laugh and be a boy, and we both were drawn to that. Mostly we were drawn to these two because they like the same things we like to do as a family, and we really felt that our age and experience could mesh with these two and make us a complete family.

In what specific ways are you a good match for the children? J loves to dance and do gymnastics; Christina grew up in dance classes, recitals, auditions, and doing gymnastics. W is in soccer; Chris grew up playing soccer, both recreationally and competitively. They both like to do things outdoors, we are an outdoor family. Most specifically, they’ve expressed a desire to be adopted, and we desire to adopt. ϑ In all seriousness, we believe that the opportunities, and stability, as well as the love of a forever family are something we can give them. Unconditionally. Forever.

Describe your stability as a couple. We have been together for 11.5 years, and married for 8. Throughout our marriage, we’ve moved across the country three times, been through several trying events (death, miscarriage), and have remained the best of friends. While we haven’t had a marriage full of puppies and rainbows, our faith in God and our ability to rely on each other through the tough times has definitely cemented our stability. We have thought long and hard about bringing children into our lives, and we wouldn’t do it if we didn’t plan on being together until we die. Divorce is not an option for us.

How will you meet the children’s emotional, social, and attachment needs? We have read several books and researched information on attachment and bonding. We are easily able to bond with our friends’ children, and believe that our hearts and compassion will allow us the ability to provide a safe haven for our kids. Our plan is to always be there for our children, as a soft place to land, and a solid foundation in which they can build their lives.

How will you meet the children’s physical and medical needs? We have already chosen a pediatrician and will be meeting with him if we are chosen at committee. We are financially and emotionally ready for any issues that may come up.

How will you meet the children’s cognitive and educational needs? Christina plans on reducing her hours at work, so that she is able to be with the children before and after school, and as well has the flexibility to take time off for volunteering in the classroom as well and being a clear and present positive influence in their lives. We are currently also researching private schools, and trying to decide which avenue would be best for the kids.

How will you provide ongoing connections to caregivers/bio-family? We are willing to provide updates via email, mail, photos, etc.

How will you prevent unsafe situations and promote safety? We believe that these children are at an age where they should be given choices, and learn from their choices. We will always be there to guide them, answer their questions, and educate them when necessary. Our first priority will always be to love them, followed by keeping them safe. We will prevent unsafe situations by always knowing about their surroundings, and teaching them by example.

How will you provide cultural connections? These children are of the same culture as we are. They currently attend a Foursquare Church which is the same church group we attend, and are actively involved in the church. We will continue that involvement. We are fortunate in that our youth pastor is one of our friends, as well as a father of an adopted child, and he cannot wait to meet our children!

What resources, services, treatment and/or therapists are available in your community? We have several resources available to us throughout the community. We are in very close proximity to Providence Hospital, as well as being in possession of two very good health care plans.

List at least three components of discipline plan. Our plans for discipline involve:

Information – we will set our expectations with the children. They will know and understand the house rules, and they will also be written down for them. We will review them when necessary. We don’t have a lot of rules, but we do have a structured family environment.

Understanding – when one of them acts against the rules, we will sit down with them to talk to them and understand why they did it, and get them to understand why what they did was wrong.

Consequences – dependent upon the infraction, consequences will range from time outs, to removal of privileges. Children need to understand that there are consequences in life, and learning them at an early age is paramount to becoming a successful adult. At no time will we resort to physical punishment or withholding of necessities (i.e. – food and water).

We have been reading the Love and Logic series and firmly believe in this method of discipline. Giving children choices, learning what their currency is, and teaching them from their mistakes is our plan.

What are your expectations about the placement? Our hope is that these children will come into our home and learn through our actions and our words that we are going to be there for them always. We understand the feelings of neglect and abandonment that may be plaguing them, and want to set out immediately to make them feel welcome, accepted, loved, and safe. We understand that this will not be immediate, and that as a family, we will all have to work on it. We are also very hopeful that since the kids are excited about being adopted that they are starting to have closure about the past and be hopeful for our future as a family together.

What do you anticipate your experience will be in integrating the child into your family? We have spoken with the foster mom several times and can honestly say that we feel the integration will be quick and relatively painless. She has told us how they have quickly adapted to life at her house, and that above all they simply want to be adopted. We feel lucky that we have had the opportunity to speak with her several times, and each time she has been so gracious as to be candid about their behaviors, their personalities, and their quirks. We’ve gotten a chance to ‘know’ them through her eyes and her words, and honestly cannot wait until we can bring them home.

So that's our story. Whatcha think?


Lizz said...

Wowzers! I know from Peas that you guys are in the process, but I didn't realize you were this far along! So exciting! I'll keep you in my thoughts on Nov. 9, and hope for a happy outcome and that J&W have found their forever home!

Anonymous said...

Sorry to post anopn - I'm "Gulfcoastgirl". Wonderful post. Good luck - you would be awesome parents to those children.

Wingnut said...

Nov 9th is a very good its my birthday! Good luck!!!!

Elizabeth-Flourish in Progress said...

Wow. I'm new to your blog and I am so moved by your candor and your love.

Those kids are so, so lucky to be coming into your life.

Thanks for sharing this.