Friday, October 24, 2008

Home Study

 We had our first visit from the contract social worker on Wednesday evening.  I had spent the prior two weeks unpacking the remaining moving boxes, cleaning, trimming the hedges, re-grouting the bathroom, and generally freaking out.  So I was surprised that my social worker did not even ask for a tour!  She just sat down at the kitchen table, and chatted with me about doing this work and why I was interested in adopting.  Period.  She mentioned that she had already received two recommendations (thanks Megan and Tiffany!) and together with the information I had supplied in my application materials, had already sketched out part of the home study.  She said that she would visit us once more, and then generate the report within ten days!  In many respects, this adoption process has been moving along at a pace I never imagined.  At the beginning of the month, I received the Dossier paperwork and began a veritable scavenger hunt for supporting letters.  Though the effort expended to gather all the pieces is considerable, as a new transplant to my town, it has been a way to get to know my community.  I needed a notarized letter from my bank, another from my workplace, another from the police station, my doctor, and so on.  I needed to learn where the town hall is, and how to renew my passport.  I found the closest photo shop and post office.  All in all, I have met a lot of nice people and feel a bit like I'm in an episode of Sesame Street.  "Who are the people in your neighborhood, in your neighborhood...?"
Last weekend I also spent time with Ethiopian friends, learning some Amharic words.  We are all hoping that the new child actually understands Amharic, as there are over 70 spoken languages in Ethiopia.  But it will make travel easier, regardless.  My friends are wildly excited at the prospect my adopting a child from their birthplace.  They assured me that just as their home is a second home to Najma and myself, so it will be for the new addition.  I watched the mother prepare injera, the sourdough flat, spongy bread that is the mode of transportation between hearty Ethiopian stews and one's mouth.  It is a lot of work.  They were amazed, and very touched, to hear that American families are trying to learn to make injera and cook with berbere spices for their adopted children.  Auntie encourages all of us to just purchase injera, and save the hours of labor for the new children :).  
I continue to try and collect my needed letters and put my home in order, but after this week, I feel more relaxed.  I feel the prospect of mothering another child is lightening my spirit.  I know the wait will seem odious at some point, but at this moment, I am buoyed by the progress I have made so far toward my child.  

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