This waiting time was interesting. I was invited to a local Coffee Morning; this was an event where social workers presented what they called hard-to-place children that were still looking for forever homes! This was for me a weird day, being told about these children and who they were looking for as parents for them. I remember one child in particular who was 3 years old and they were looking for a two-parent family for them. The social worker that presented was actually sitting next to me and I mentioned to her “what is wrong with a one-parent family?” I spoke to her at length afterward and she suggested that if I was interested, I could put my name down, which I did. I heard nothing more!
I also went to an event in London which was even more bizarre. This event really tore at my heartstrings imagine a fair scenario and lots of catalogues detailing lots and lots of children. When I first saw the set up I wanted to run and hide, it was just too much knowing that these were all children in need of a home.
I pulled up my big girl pants and walked into the room and slowly worked my way around and spoke to a few of the social workers about the children! It really was heart-breaking! This yielded nothing for me.
Time was ticking by and I got to the point that I did not want to go out just in case the phone rang. But one day I was in contact with a friend who was in Canada, she was actually one of my references for support. She offered for me to go and see her. I booked to go for 3 weeks at the end of August 2008. And would you believe it, I was contacted and was being looked at for not 1 but 3 different children. One I was not prepared to look at as it was just too much. The 2nd one the Social Worker decided that I was not the right fit and the 3rd one was a good match. I was given a photo and a video of this little boy. Which came to Canada with me. I was so happy to be able to show my friend these things!
After my return from just an amazing trip. I met with this child’s foster carer we got on really well I went on to the Matching Panel in October 2008, yet another group of people with the child’s best interests at heart who interviewed me! I then had an agonising wait to find out what their verdict was!!!
I had to wait just 20 mins but OMG it seemed forever. The answer was YES!
I can now tell you that this little man that I was matched with and was to become my son was the same child that I asked about right at the beginning almost a year earlier!
The Next Step
I now had my work cut out to get the house ready for a child he was 4 at this time and I also had to make a video introducing myself (I was known as Mummy Jennifer) and showing my house and of course his bedroom, I had decorated it for him and on the bed, I placed a furry Grizzly Bear that I was planning on giving to him! I actually bought it in Canada just for him! (Yes, he still has it!).
I also had to produce a book with photos that introduced my immediate family and my cats which I had two of!! As a creative person I really enjoyed doing this and because it was for this very special little boy it was even more precious.
Another meeting with social workers hashed out how the introductions would go. When you adopt a child, you don’t just take them there is a process of introductions that takes place so that they are not overwhelmed and also gives time for the foster carer to prepare the child. It really is a delicate and vital process.
My introductions were planned for mid-November and would be for 12 days, initially a quick visit for a short time.