As you can imagine, Ethan and I were flying high after being linked and potentially matched with Cooper and Kit. As well as preparing ourselves emotionally, having numerous heated debates about the size of our Vauxhall Corsa and whether we would need an upgrade for two children, Ethan had the inspired idea of appealing to our local parenting network on Facebook to ask whether anyone would be willing to donate any baby ‘stuff’ to get us going.
We were truly overwhelmed by the response! We had nearly 400 responses: offers, well wishes, questions about adoption, even someone offering to buy us nappies (which we gratefully declined). People were so kind and so generous; we spent a couple of days, all in all, collecting double buggies (both side by side and double decker), cot-beds, Jumperoos, books, toys, you name it! In fact there are still items we are yet to collect! People were so kind and so excited for us.
But our joy and excitement were short lived. On the 16th June it transpired that the birth father of the boys had lodged an appeal against the placement order, which means, if the family court agrees to hear his appeal, there may be a lengthy legal process and eventually the court could decide that Cooper and Kit should be returned to their birth parents. Alternatively the family court could decide that birth father has already been assessed, has already had his say in court and could refuse the appeal.
We have spent the last month in a sort of vile limbo: not knowing whether we are having the boys and hearing nothing, not one word, from the boys’ social worker. We have literally no idea about how long this could take, when it will go to court, if there are any time limits on how long the appeal/court process can take – we’re essentially clueless.
As you can imagine, to go from the heady excitement of these boys being a near certainty to our new reality: that there may be some long, undefined wait or, worse still, that we may not get them at all, has been pretty hideous. After such a protracted and arduous journey to approval, we were so relieved to link so quickly and to be selected by Cooper and Kit’s social workers with relative ease. Turns out that this too is a struggle – we are again stuck in a hinterland of doubt and uncertainty. It does make me want to scream: WHY CAN’T ANYTHING BE EASY??!
So after four weeks of waiting, we have decided that we want to start looking again. Not because we don’t want the boys or because we’ve given up, but rather that in order to protect ourselves and our own wellbeing – we have to be able to look elsewhere. We don’t want to put all our eggs in one very uncertain basket. Neither of us copes particularly well with uncertainty and although that uncertainty might have become our modus operandi over the last couple of years (because of adoption), we’re keen to do what we can to feel more in control of our joint destiny. Of course, if the situation with the boys resolves itself, we’d still LOVE to have them! We have carved out a Cooper and Kit shaped space in our lives which we’re desperate for them to fill. But in the meantime, we want to make sure we’re not missing out on other children which may need a forever family, which we’re only too keen to provide.