How long will you have to wait to adopt a baby?
This is one of the biggest questions adoptive couples have, and is probably the most difficult thing to do during the adoption journey. The toughest part is that no one can tell you just how long you will have to wait.
As my wife and I went through our first adoption journey to adopt a baby, we were so excited to get our home study completed and our profile finished. But once everything was done it felt like our adoption process came to a screeching halt.
Our facilitator Lifetime Adoption helped us during this time, but we wanted to find more ways to be more proactive. We found a lot of information geared toward international adoptions, yet we were able to come up with some things to help us through the wait.
7 things to do while you wait:
Adoption forums/Facebook groups
Go online and get support from other adoptive couples that are in the same boat you are. You can ask questions and learn from others who have done what you want to do. Check out the Adoption.com forums and a domestic adoption support group on Facebook.
Reading adoption blogs, books, and magazines will help you be more prepared for when you get the call about an expectant mother who wants to match with you. Here are some domestic adoption stories to inspire you. Check out Adoptive Families magazine. Look at my Resource page for more to read.
This can help you keep busy and at the same time provide a great story for your child as you explain how excited you were for their arrival. You can also show/educate your family on what you are going through as you wait.
There are many free blog sites out there. I recommend using WordPress. If blogging isn’t your thing, you can always write in a journal. Here is one called Your Sacred Adoption: A Guided Journal of Life, Love and Memories that you can fill out as you go through your adoption process.
Use social media
You never know where you may connect with an expectant mother. Use your waiting time to get the word out to everyone that you want to adopt. Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites can help. Share your online profile and video with your friends and ask them to share it as well. You can post links to your blog for expectant mothers to view.
Finish projects around the house
If you are like me, there are always projects around the house you would like to get done. Maybe it’s painting a spare bedroom, or remodeling a bathroom. Whatever you have on your “to do” list, get it done while you have the time. After the baby comes home, sleep will by your #1 priority, not how great the bathroom looks.
Register for baby items
You may think this is something difficult to do, especially if you have dealt with infertility as we have. Still, now is the time to get used to the idea that you will be parents and you are going to need some things. Most stores that have baby registries do not recognize adoption situations, but we’ve found that Babies R Us does. Even if you don’t register, it will help you to go look at car seats, diaper bags, bottles, etc.
Find and attend parenting classes which include infant CPR, how to change diapers, how to treat a common illness, etc. If you think you would be uncomfortable attending a class with pregnant women, you can locate some specific adoptive parent training. Try searching for adoptive family/parent training in your state or contact your local adoption agency. You can contact your local hospital and ask if they have classes for adoptive parents or private training (possibly in your own home).
There you go. Hope these ideas will help you think of even more things to do while you wait.
Even though the waiting period is a challenging time, you should try to enjoy being a couple/family by doing some fun and relaxing things such as going out to dinner together, taking long walks, and sleeping in when you can.
Ironically, my wife and I waited 9 months before getting matched with our first child’s birthmother. This doesn’t seem very long does it? In hindsight, it wasn’t.
We had no clue how long it would take to adopt, and the waiting felt like an eternity. Remember that no matter how long you wait, don’t give up. You will bring home the baby of your dreams.
Check out my FREE PDF Report on the 10 Things To Do While You Wait.