It's A Wonderful Life

"You don't need a castle to be a king . . . all you need is a home . . . it's a wonderful life!"

A. & I survived our PSB homestudy. The social worker, B.Buck, no relation, arrived at 10am & stayed for the next three hours and 15 minutes. I'd been cleaning 'til about 12.30am the night before and woke up early to bake blueberry muffin tops and banana bread. PSB said we didn't have to do that, but a little anxiety got the best of me, and any home always smells good after a little baking.

B.Buck didn't want anything to eat or drink, and she didn't use the bathroom during her entire visit. I think I went to the powder room at least once every hour (& refilled my coffee mug twice, I think) while she asked us further questions about our families, reasons for adoption, and expectations as we expand our family, wanting to make sure we are realistic about how our lives will change dramatically once we have a child.

I have to admit, the first question was a doozy, "Were you close to your father?"

Is that your first question, really? Did I not write enough about him in my required 10-page autobiography? As I responded, What a first question . . . I was a little overwhelmed as I wiped the tears from my eyes.

So you're still in the grieving process, she asked. I think I'll be in the grieving process forever. Friends and family, who've had a parent die, tell me -- with time, it gets a little easier, but the heartache doesn't really go away completely. Especially not with the holidays coming up.

To prepare for our homestudy, PSB suggested that we write a couple of one-pagers: 1. what we're most curious about our future child's origin 2. letter to our future child's birth parents. And yes, we discussed those concerns with B.Buck. I don't' think A. & I were nervous at all (I was a wee-bit anxious feeling a little like we're under a microscope) about our half-day conversation as all we could do was be honest and be ourselves. We'd certainly spent so much time researching & discussing our choice to adopt, attended required seminars, completed the required readings & trainings.

They say, nothing can prepare you for parenthood. I have to disagree just a tad bit. As adoptive parents-to-be, every effort is made to prepare and scrutinize the individuals who make a conscious choice to be parents. And perhaps that's the difference between some adoptive parents & some birth parents. Having to be super-aware of your choice to bring a child into your family, having to actually do the financial planning, having to verify your childcare options . . . because as adoptive parents, we're accountable to others beyond ourselves. We're accountable to our agency who's facilitating our 'becoming parents' process, the social worker who'll be doing follow-up visits once we've brought our child home, and the child who's been matched to be ours.

At the end of our conversation, A. asked, "Did we pass?" And B.Buck said, "Oh, you wouldn't have gotten to this point if you hadn't already."

A. & I feel great about completing another milestone in our adoption journey. So we celebrated with dinner at one of our favorite nearby restaurants, Wasabi House, and a local show, It's a Wonderful Life - The Musical, at the Sayreville Main Street Theater. (Another reason why we love where we live.) Life is about the home we make for ourselves and the lives whom we touch & who touch ours.

As we move closer to being in 'waiting' mode . . . It certainly is . . . a wonderful life.



the holidays
ring in festive memories
of raw bellyaching laughter
& heartsick love
moments of the past revisited
touch me tenderly
with wistful unpleasantry
like the smack of bittersweet chocolate