We did expect it. We were prepared. Or so I thought…
Things were progressing so well. Met the Foster Carer a few times, exchanged notes with the medical advisor, visited school, SAW THE BOYS from a distance, sorted out adoption leave cover for my work place and then BOOM. 1 phone call from the SW and suddenly everything was on hold…
Suddenly everybody was asking me how do I feel. Some assumed I was angry, some thought I was disappointed or sad or even devastated. I guess, I did have those feelings, too. But thanks to this wonderful community on Twitter I was overwhelmed with encouragement and positive messages from strangers whom I never met, yet I felt the closest to already. Adopters who have been there, done that sent me messages and hearing their stories my initial negative attitude was transformed into one of feeling sorry for Her. I also gained a whole new appreciation for Her as a mother who was not giving up on her children without a fight! When I shared these thoughts with our SW she was very impressed (and probably relieved that she didn’t have to give a motivational speech or pick me up from the floor). She more or less assured us that BM won’t be able to get her children back, but we can’t assume anything so we need to wait it out.
We expected the court date to happen soon, but sadly the judge picked a date in April, which was still a month away. This meant the boys would definitely not move in with us during the Easter break as originally hoped. Despite the encouraging news that the judge didn’t ask for a re-assessment on BM we were naturally anxious and irrationally worried. I say irrationally because all the evidence, practice and really, common sense dictated that there was NO WAY the children would return to Her home and stay safe. But I couldn’t think rationally. My mind went into panic mode and the ‘What ifs’ took over.
The weeks dragged on slowly and finally the dreaded Friday arrived. Needless to say I couldn’t focus on work or on anything, really. The only think I could think of was the fact that in these very moments a judge is making a decision ABOUT MY LIFE and I can’t even be there to hear it, let alone contribute. I know, the judge was not even considering me at that moment, just assessing BM, but still; if the decision is for the boys to be adopted, chances are very good they will come to us thus it will influence the rest of my life. On the other hand if she decides the children should stay in the Fostering system, in a sense they will be unavailable for us, prospective adopters… Not helpful thoughts!
A whole day was blocked out so we expected a decision to be made on the same day. By 2 pm I was sufficiently full of chocolate (forever grateful for an amazing colleague who constantly fed me sweets all day!) I was in the middle of a telephone conversation, when my mobile phone rang. I saw the name; it was my SW calling. I only said ‘hello’ to the phone when she started: ‘Good news, I have good news. Hi, it’s me calling.’ I will always love her for not beating around the bush and she just said it right away!
And suddenly the mind returned to the rational reality… But of course the plan is still adoption. Who in their sane mind thought the children would be returned to BM? No judge would have ruled that in a million years! So, the plan is still adoption and we are still the only family considered!
We shared the outcome with out friends and naturally they assumed we were over the moon. Yes, we were very pleased with the decision, but I couldn’t help feel sad for Her. She put up a good fight; she believed that she had made sufficient changes in her life and she genuinely believed she can have her children back. Deep down I wish that was the case! I wish these two lovelies could grow up with their loving birth mother, because that is how it should be. But sadly that’s not in their best interest and they wouldn’t be safe. It will be MY job to keep them safe!
FeelingDadYet (a.k.a my lovely husband and always the practical one) celebrated by buying 2 children’s beds! 🙂