Three days after our informational meeting I received a call from our assigned social worker. She wanted to go ahead and schedule our first interview and informed me it would be at our home and would take about two hours. I was surprised to hear back from her so quickly but she said that there is a MAPP (foster care training) class coming up soon and she was hoping to be able to get us into it. We scheduled our first home interview for the following week.
I kept thinking that this was just an informal meeting and she likely would just stay downstairs and talk with us. A friend who recently became a foster mom through the same company and with the same social worker informed me that she would want to look around. Meaning, look around at the entire house. Let FREAK OUT mode commence! Our house was a mess. I know some people say that and it really isn’t all that bad–but our house was bad. Boxes, clothes, toys, strewn all over our upstairs.
Stupidly I scheduled the visit for the same day my oldest daughter got her braces on. We rushed home from that appointment and cleaned, and cleaned and cleaned. I think I put the vacuum away as she was pulling into the neighborhood! Whew!
The visit went well. We talked a lot about why we are wanting to adopt, our attitudes toward adoption, what we know about it. We shared about our family and our childhood. We talked about the girls, my history or miscarriages, our health. Everything went well. The only small little bump in the road is I will need a letter written by my physician explaining the need for my depression medications and documenting my history of seasonal affective disorder. I had read about this potentially being an issue but decided from the beginning to be upfront and honest about it. I’ve honestly never had any thoughts about harming myself or anyone else and I made sure she understood this!
She gave us a stack of paperwork to fill out including criminal background checks and fingerprint cards. She also e-mailed me a few more forms including the HUGE packet of 31 pages that we will need to complete within the next few weeks. They want to know pretty much everything about us from birth to today. It is very thorough and when I hear those bad stories about foster parents I wonder how they ever even made it through the paperwork!
Our next steps are completing all the paperwork, taking the girls in for their yearly check-ups and getting their TB tests complete, getting our fingerprints done and getting our physicians to fill out our medical forms and getting my doctor to write that letter for me.
Check out my adoption timeline page for more information including any costs that we are incurring through this process. Most people are surprised to hear that when you foster to adopt through the social services program there are very minimal costs. Adoption doesn’t have to be expensive!