I’m often asked –“how long did it take?” Obviously, this differs case by case. From the time I picked up the phone to our little one coming home, was 12 months. Not long at all. Not really that different to a pregnancy. But at the time, going through all these stages, it often felt like an eternity.
After assessments, it was very tempting to go full steam ahead and get “baby ready” but of course a) you don’t know if you’ll even be approved and b) what age your child will be if you are. Very different to preparing for a new-born. A reminder you are not on a “normal” path to parenthood. Panel do need you to be well prepared though in case of a quick match, so it’s a hard balance to get right. You do have to start the preparation process to a degree. I had pretty much waited 10 years to be a mum. I was desperate to buy cute outfits and to finally walk into the likes of Mothercare with a real purpose. I needed to be just a little more patient for this.
I did masses of research and read all sorts of adoption guidance books. Generally, I learnt a lot from these. But I must be honest; some of them really made we worry. Reading peoples accounts of their difficulties with attachments and having to deal with signs of trauma made me question if we had taken the right path. What if we couldn’t provide a child with all they needed? I knew deep down we could, but I got myself a bit worked up. It was time for a break from it all. From the intensity. I didn’t need much convincing when my husband suggested a holiday. Our last one just the two of us.
Within a few days of arriving somewhere warm and sunny, I could feel the worries lifting from my shoulders. It ended up being the most relaxed holiday we’d had in years. This time we weren’t running away from all the disappointments. Despite all that was in front of us, we had a new sense of calm. Especially me. A belief, even if still a little cautious, that we would soon be parents. Finally starting to let go of anxieties I’d carried for so long.