Thursday, 10 March 2011

In the Beginning....

Let me first start off this blog by saying "Thank You" to all the others who shared their stories, which helped us set our sights on the course of adoption from the Ukraine.  This Blog starts off at the very beginning as we navigate our way through this process.  We are in the pre adoption stage right now, or better yet maybe the pre of pre adoption stage, where the idea of adoption is just pushing the brink of becoming reality.

The idea entered our lives after the birth of our third son, Cyrus.  With difficulties in all three pregnancies Dale and I knew we had to stop.  However, I wanted more children and when the time came for Cyrus to be borne by C-Section and make the decision to have my tubes tied, I hesitated.  I couldn’t bring myself to say it, I still remember the surge of tears filling up my eyes, and those who know me best, know I positively hate to cry.

Dale leaned in, gave me a hug and whispered in my ear, “we can adopt.”  Our eyes met, and he smiled at me holding face tenderly between his hands.  “We can adopt,” he repeated and I smiled back and nodded.   My heart stopped aching and somehow I knew that this was meant to be.

As the years passed I played with the idea of adopting internationally, (never actually believing we would do it) knowing the cost of adopting from another country was expensive it just didn’t seem possible.  My sister was adopted and she had made the comment that she liked the fact that she looked more like our mother than we did.  With her comments in mind we decided to have a girl who would look more like us.

In doing my research (and yes I was still playing with the idea) about which countries to adopt from my first instinct was to adopt from Russia.  My Grandfather’s family I knew came from there, but after reading more about it, the feeling that Russia wasn’t for us pressed in on me. 

So I looked to the Ukraine, and the more I read about it the more I felt it was right for us.  I contacted agencies, trying to get their feedback and at the time the Ukraine had limited adoptions due to families not filing progress reports on time or at all.  We weren’t in any position to adopt at that time, so it didn’t affect us, but I certainly realized for all those families wanting to adopt and couldn’t it was a nasty wrench thrown in their plans that could have been easily prevented.

The Ukraine always held a special place in my heart.  I can remember as a child I thought it was the most magical of cultures.  My mother and one of her friends had taken my sisters and I to the Ukrainian pavilion during a week of international festivities put on by the community.  The way they dances and the outfit the girls wore were something out of a fairytale to me.  Ever since that moment I fell in love with things Ukraine.  In my high school home study class I made Ukrainian dishes for a class project, and the thought of adopting from just felt right, even though I couldn't see it happening.

Ever since that moment just over 9 years ago, adoption has been in our hearts, and it took us a long time to get to where we are now, which is here, between the tides of what was and may come to pass.

We live in a house suitable for a large, though we are only a family of five at present.  It took a lot of work to get here, especially since we are a single income family.  Dale and I looked into fostering and completed the homestudy process along with the PRIDE training classes, with the intent to adopt, however we both decided that open adoptions weren’t for us.  (I am NOT saying they are wrong, or bad, because I do believe a lot of good can come from them.  I am just saying that they are not for us.)

After deciding not to adopt within Canada we took a break, and pondered our options which I already knew I wanted to adopt from the Ukraine.  Everything I had read up on it, stories and blogs shared by others touched my heart and I knew that this is where I knew we’d find the missing pieces of our family.

Of course there is a glitch that we must overcome and I am nervous as to how it will go over with the adoption practitioner.  The last I heard, and feel free to correct me if I am wrong, but adopting a child over the age of 3, let alone sibling groups, is frowned upon within Ontario. 

I have to say that I don’t want another infant or toddler.  I love them dearly, but after six years of being diaper free, and no longer stressed out over everything, I don’t want to go back to it.  Babies are a lot of work, and I didn’t feel back to my normal until my boys reached the age of five and I felt like I could finally breathe.

With this in mind, Dale and I discussed adopting an older girl, somewhere between the age of 6-9.  With the room all painted up and ready for its unknown occupant a discerning thought crept into my mind.   Here we are, taking a child from everything and everyone she knows, to an unknown and strange land with people who are strangers.  Even in our family she would be the only girl surround by three active boys, the odd one out always.  So instead of one child now, we are hoping to adopt sisters. 

Some adjustments will need to happen in the yellow room, but I think we can do it.

In May we will be hiring an adoption practitioner. 

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