Other Agencies

A Twist of Fate

We have been hesitant about restarting the adoption process after the utter disaster we had in Miami.

This week, I am in Boynton Beach for my new job. I’ve been staying in an Airbnb alone with hubby at home with Lola and all the packing. All day yesterday I was thinking about Friday’s for dinner. All. Freakin. Day.

Well on a whim, I went to Alehouse instead where I happened to hear a couple across the restaurant mention that they’re adopting. I so so badly want to go over and drill them about how, their timeline, and which agency. I felt like a total creeper, but I did it anyway. Hey, at least I waited until after they paid their check and were leaving.

Thank you:  https://favim.com/hopeful/

I approached them outside and she was apprehensive when a total stranger said “I happened to overhear, but are you guys adopting?” So I quickly added that we’d been trying in Miami for several years with no luck and are moving here next week. They both opened up pretty quickly afterwards. And showed me a photo of their future daughter plus gave me names of a handful of other children they’d met along the way.

It took them under a year from their classes, 2 weeks to complete their home study, and their overnight visits start next weekend. They are straight adoption as well and have had ZERO problems and are not required to have a foster license. (Miami agencies refused to consider us for adoption unless we got our foster license.) She said they do a ton of mixers up here to be able to meet the adoptable kids (which we kept asking for in Miami!) and positively raved over the woman I’ve already been in touch with at ChildNet. Their future little one is 4 years old and they’re accelerating the visitation schedule due to her age. She will be living with them within a few weeks. We exchanged info and they said to contact them anytime with questions.

THEY GAVE ME SO MUCH HOPE YOU GUYS!! I called husband to tell him what happened and even he was getting a little bit excited. We so badly want to parent and this may be the solution! Pregnancy may not happen with all the medical issues I’ve been having, but it’s also not being ruled out.

Thank you: https://orlandoespinosa.wordpress.com


Foster and Life Update


I am so amazed and grateful for all the folks that have found my blog and FB page – WELCOME to each and every one of you and thank you for reading.

Since my last post in our Facebook page about our upcoming home visit on April 2nd, we had to reschedule as our entire neighborhood lost power just hours before her visit! But of course, it’s not that easy and we still haven’t set a new time. Not only that, but the original license person (Z) has been in touch and will be helping/ completing our foster license. We received the foster license packet a few days ago to start combing through prior to her visit. There is a long list of items to have ready for the first visit – half of which will take at least a month to obtain. Erg.

Another avenue has possibly opened up for us with a phone call from my aunt. She knows someone that works with children from Colombia who I am now playing phone tag with. I have no idea if it’s considered a private adoption or international adoption or what, but we’ll see. I’ll keep everyone posted especially once I find out the name of the charity/ company/ ministry. I’m not terribly thrilled about this option as it seems like it would be religious. We might not even be considered seeing as we have no religion in our home even though I work for a Jewish institution.

In 100% completely new news, I have made a crazy life decision and decided to get a second Master’s degree, this time in Public Administration. Yes, I might be crazy. In fact, I’m fairly sure that I am crazy since it will begin this August providing I am accepted into the program. It is an online program through FIU which is local to us so I can attend all the networking socials and whatnot. I will be able to take 1-4 classes each semester. With my first Master’s, I took 2 classes and worked full time. I’m actually super excited about it even if I think I’m crazy for taking it on at this point in my life.

Let’s recap, shall we?
Grad school – all application pieces have been submitted except the 3-5 page essay about my career goals
2 part-time jobs (oh yeah, I’m back to that…) with 90 minute one way commute
Foster license
Pursuing adoption
Everything else I do in my life on a daily basis

An update on Babycakes.. she had her surgery and is the proud recipient of a new liver! The surgery was 3 weeks ago and so far so good. She still isn’t alert and aware as they’ve kept her in a coma, but at least her body has accepted the new liver.


Moving Forward

ballerinaI spoke to both TH and CW last night about Ballerina. We have our 3rd play date on Sunday, but aside from picking up the pottery, not sure yet. We’re going to come up with some ideas and see what she wants to do.

CW said everything sounded great – she had also spoken to TH – and I told her we are ready to move forward towards adopting Ballerina.


Husband and I have been non-stop discussing everything involved and feel good about our decision. There is uncertainty not really knowing how Ballerina is feeling about us, but aside from “time” we don’t know how else to truly know. TH says she’s happy and excited, but we want to hear it from her. Does that make sense? We know they talk a lot and she trusts him, but we’ll be her parents and we hope that she will open up to us more about our combined future.

We are still making assumptions about her based on being a teenager, super shy, scared of rejection, etc, etc, etc and none of them are really fair. We cannot generalize how we think she feels when she is a totally unique kid. I mean, if she turns out being the kind of teenager I was, we are golden. However, if she’s like my best friend, well, we’re in trouble. (Love you, my Zeffer!)

A-N-Y-W-A-Y… back to the CW’s call. She said we should do a few more weekends of supervised visits. It will take her a few weeks to get the paperwork done and approved for us to have unsupervised visits anyhow. Then she asked me if I could help her get a copy of our signed home study.

Um, what?

I thought we were the only ones that didn’t have it! Silly me, I thought when we were told our home study had been sent to Our Kids, that it meant the completed and signed one. She said without the signature, we cannot move forward as she can’t submit the unsigned one to the judge.


So this morning I sent off a very nice email requesting for FRC to please send the signed home study to CW as we had been matched and would like to move forward. And 3 minutes later received emails saying both our ACW and her supervisor were out of the office until next Tuesday.

Patience is SO not a virtue that I willingly possess.


Mini Checklist

Completed registration for NFPA conference? CHECK
Home study in hand? CHECK
Sent to Our Kids? CHECK
Sent to local agencies? CHECK for the 3 that replied to my email a few days ago


ARC Meeting Recap

This morning we had our Adoption Review Committee meeting!

Husband took off Wednesday night from work since we had to be downtown in the morning. We had yummy dinner last night and relaxed watching TV and playing video games.

This morning, we woke up early and were ready to leave the house by 8:20am. The ARC was set for 10:30am. We drove to the metrorail station, parked on the roof of the garage, then got on the train heading for Government Center. We arrived so early that we found breakfast at GC and hung out taking our time eating.  I wasn’t sure exactly how to get to Our Kids, so after walking outside twice, I asked a police officer to point us in the right direction. My GPS isn’t that accurate on the walking setting.

We went on our way and it was only about 3 blocks away. The walk was super easy and really nice. He talked about trying to find a job in the GC area so we could ride the train together. I see couples doing that and even taking their kids to school on the train. We found the correct building,located the gate to walk in and then I fell.

Yup – I faceplanted right outside the building. I twisted my right ankle and ripped up my left knee. By some miracle, even though I landed flat on the ground, I didn’t skin my hands, rip any clothes, break my sunglasses or my phone. I was holding my phone, texting and walking and was sure it – or at least the case – was going to break. Nope, it was perfect. But oy was I in a lot of pain. He said I cried out as I fell. In my mind I yelled the F word really loudly as I hit the ground. Note to self, texting and walking is just as bad as texting and driving when you’re a klutz like me.

I sat for a few minutes then he helped me stand. I wobbled for about a minute to catch my breath and stop shaking then started walking since we were getting close to the time we had to be there. We checked in with security and went upstairs. We had to wait for about 40 minutes, but our ACW’s supervisor came out to let us know is was going to be a little while since they were running a little bit behind schedule. Great, no problem. I sat there with my foot propped up on my laptop bag. I saw 1 person I know that I was introduced to via email and then met at several events.

When we were taken back to the conference room, we met the panel: Paula, Allyson and Becky (via phone call). Paula explained about the review process based on both our background and on the state of things these days. She asked us questions if we had any concerns. Then asked why we decided to adopt and a little bit of our background.

She said the reason we were there was 2-fold:

  1. bc husband had a blip from the FBI on his background check. He explained what it was from and that it happened 22 years ago. He elaborated where I’m not going to in this blog.
  2. bc I was in therapy for anxiety. I told her the reasons behind my therapy, which I won’t go into detail here as there are people that could get hurt if I write about it. I told her about my learned coping strategies, that I’m still in touch with my therapist, and that the last year was spent doing a lot of pre-adoption and parenting type therapy.

After we answered the questions, she told us what happens next. We don’t get the results today. (I actually knew this coming into the ARC since I asked a friend what to expect.) They will write up a report, hopefully by tomorrow afternoon, and submit it to the administration. The administration will read the report, check out our file and then give us the approval or denial. They couldn’t tell us if we were approved, but it seemed like we were. However, we’re waiting for the actual official approval before I jump for joy.

She did recommend, though not mandate, that due to our backgrounds, we look into parenting class at either FRC or one of the other agencies. It would help us to make new parenting choices and not fall back on what we grew up with.

After the meeting and we said our good-byes, husband and I were leaving when Paula came out to catch us. She said from the sound of things, her family and upbringing were a lot like mine. We chatted for about 15-20 more minutes about different things like getting firmly entrenched in the local foster/adoption community (that I am and just A-D-O-R-E!), finding friends with parenting strategies we want to emulate and asking them about it, and reading up on as much as we can to learn about foster kids problems, attachments, etc. Regardless of how prepared we think we are, we’re not. And rather than fall back on not ideal parenting strategies, we should start now forming behaviors, etc for our children.

She’s amazing. Seriously. She’s one more amazing person that I’ve met along the way in the past year.


I’m still here…

Untitled-1I know it’s been well over a month since my last entry, but there is literally nothing to report. We are completely stalled and haven’t had a response to the many emails I have sent to our case worker. It would appear that we are not unique in this either. Of the other classmates from our PRIDE class, only 1 couple has a completed home study and only bc they had extenuating circumstances and already had a child identified. All the others, from the informal survey myself and another classmate completed, no one else is even close. Not even the potential foster parents which surprised me.

We graduated on September 10th and were told they had to be completed by December 10th. Hi, it’s December 16th. We haven’t heard a peep since November 20th when I received an email about an adoption picnic event. From the get go, it’s been very difficult to get in contact with almost anyone from our agency. We’ve actually looked into switching agencies in the hopes of completing our home study faster, but it seems like they are all pretty slow. Joining and attending the association meeting is pretty eye opening. We’ve learned a lot about the process talking to other families.

I’ve had so much more luck talking to my friends at Our Kids than hearing a peep from our own agency. No, I take that back. I was called a couple weeks back by one of our awesome PRIDE instructors asking about placing a child with us. Unfortunately, he was way far out of our criteria and also not having a home study, we couldn’t have accepted him no matter what.

This whole process is just extremely frustrating and painful. I know that one day we will have our little one in our family. But until then, I am struggling. And with every new post about my friend’s pregnancies, my heart breaks a little bit more. Don’t get me wrong, I am beyond excited for every single one of them, but it still breaks my heart that they will all likely have their babes before I have mine we have ours. Even the ones that just announced in the past week.

Having an inordinate amount of stress at work isn’t helping either. I am currently wrapping up the largest event of the year that we’ve been working on for months. And come January, I am taking a new job. In being fair, I’ve given my boss the opportunity to meet the salary of my new job, but it has an expiration date on it.

Plus, we were really really hoping to have a child in our home – or at least going through the visits – by Christmas/ New Year’s.

To the person/people that read every single post in my blog on December 5-6, I am in awe. There is so much that I’ve written over the years that I’ve even forgotten most of it. Hope you enjoyed it!


This is so not OK

On May 19th, after finding out that CHS was full until September/October, I emailed all the other agencies in Dade county. We obviously had great luck and responsiveness from FRC as they are the agency we’re working with. No one else was really responsive.

Until Tuesday. Yep, 51 days later.

HHCH* replied not with a “oh we’re sorry for not responding sooner but would love to work with you,” but with an invitation to their PRIDE classes.

And they used way too many ALL CAPS for my taste. Ew.

So I responded with “No, we will not be attending. We are working with another agency. I don’t know anything about your agency as no one has ever been in contact with me since I emailed you 2 months ago.”

And she promptly responded to apologize and that she’s not sure what could have happened.


Thursday morning, another person emailed me about it. I am not planning on responding to her. The only reason I responded on Tuesday was bc it was that I had to RSVP to the class. This email is a total cop out. If your class was full or I had incorrect information, then freakin email me back and let me know. Not an adoption agency? Fine! I don’t want to work with you anyhow as you recommend foster to adopt and we’ve specifically ruled that out.

Hi Becca,

I want to apologize for not emailing you earlier and if I remember correctly the reason was that we had already begun a class and our next Orientation was not until 7/18/13 and you were interested in starting a class right away. In addition, we are not an adoption agency, although you may have the opportunity to adopt a child if the child becomes available to be adopted. We usually recommend our families to foster to adopt where you will have the privilege of fostering a child and/or children and may possibly adopt that child (ren); however, it is not a guarantee.

You may have already begun the classes with CHS on 6/20/13. Please advise if you have not and if you were still interested.

Thanks so much!

Here to Love and to Serve His Kingdom,

* In all fairness, I was hesitant to even go with this agency as their website tells about their mission which is very… religious. Neither of us are religious – spiritual, yes, but not religious – and just reading through the site made me a little uncomfortable. So like KB said, everything happens for a reason.