So sorry that I have been behind in updating the latest with our adoption! Many of you have asked and I so appreciate your concern and interest.
Last Tuesday we had our first homestudy interview. Our social worker is Sherry and she is super sweet. Which I already knew from Alison and Stephen. She’s also laid back which I was happy about. I didn’t want all these interviews to feel stiff and formal. Sherry was at our house for about 3 hours. She’s pretty chatty as am I so it might could have been condensed by a half hour or so. But again, I am glad Sherry is the type that I feel comfortable talking to.
Other than the extra talking Sherry and I did, everyone keeps asking why it took 3 hours. Well, we had lots to cover. Sherry actually had to do our orientation interview before we could start with interview #1. The orientation interview is usually done via phone with the director of the China program in Birmingham. But one of their workers had a family emergency and I think the rest of the office staff had to pull some double duty. So Sherry got to do that for us. Many of the questions from the orientation interview and what she has to ask for interview #1 were the same. She said the orientation was almost like a mini-homestudy in and of itself! So a lot of what we had to answer was pretty repetitive.
Any question you could possibly think of was probably asked to us. Here are some examples:
Where did you graduate high school? College? What degree do you have?
Where do you work? Do you plan to continue working there?
Where did you meet? How long did you date? How long were you engaged?
Have you ever been to counseling (personal or marital)? To see a psychiatrist?
Have you ever had a traffic violation?
Have you ever done illicit drugs? Been prescribed mood altering drugs?
Are you taking any long-term medication?
Would there ever be something that would make you consider separation or divorce? (To which Jeremy said “Yes. Infidelity. And anybody who says no is lying”. Sherry just about hit the floor. She thinks Jeremy is hilarious. Which I’m glad. Because he’s pretty blunt and has no filter sometimes.)
And the list goes on and on. Sherry also asked about shared interests and hobbies. Jeremy told her we like to go out to eat. haha I’m not sure that counts as a hobby. But yes, we are those people who view it as such. We did tell her though that we’ve started running and enjoy working out together. Then she asked about individual hobbies. Jeremy said playing tennis, softball and I can’t remember what else. When she asked me what I like to do, I had nothing other than reading. She asked did I like baking or cooking. I said no. Then she asked about photography or scrapbooking. To which I said no. I felt like the most boring person ever. Oh well.
Then we signed and initialed about a million pieces of paper from our China manual. And we’re not finished. But we had to sign things like consulting service agreement, statement of prohibition concerning child bullying, adoption service plan, guardian form, inventory of common adoption topics (things we would like to discuss at later interviews), power of unmet expectations (tricky questions with choices of somewhat true, very true, not true at all) and disclosure agreement just to name a few. We also filled out our child abuse and neglect (CAN) forms to be processed. That is of the things that takes the longest to clear. And Jeremy had to fill one out for Mississippi since he lived there for a minute. So pray we filled everything out correctly and they don’t get rejected!
We also had to give Sherry copies of our birth certificates, marriage license, photo IDs, latest tax return, pay stub, health insurance card and Roxie’s rabies certificate. I’ve still got to take pictures of the house and email to her.
All this paperwork makes what I have to do for special education seem like a breeze!
After we finally finished all the questions and some of the paperwork, she did our home inspection. We passed other than we didn’t have a fire extinguisher. And I knew she was going to ask to see it because Alison told me she would. Sherry just said to make sure and get one. Then she had to check the smoke detectors and wanted to see which room would be the baby’s. For those of you who don’t know me, I am no where near a clean or neat freak. And I had spent all weekend cleaning my bathroom and cleaning out my closets. Which all needed doing. And then she didn’t even walk back there! I almost asked would she please just go take a peek because I had worked so hard.
So everyone thinks that wrapped up our homestudy. But not quite. We have 3 more interviews with Sherry plus medical checkups, fingerprints, video modules, readings, discussion questions and autobiographies to write!
Ok, that pretty much catches you all up other than our fingerprint debacle. I was going to write about it in this post. But I have gotten a little long-winded (see what I mean about being chatty?) so I will write about it later in another post.
Thanks for reading!