We adopted our son in 2014 and because so many people find the process fascinating (we do, too!), I thought I'd post our timeline for you all here. This post explains the history of Dear Mushka, which heavily began as a way to raise money when we began the adoption process.
september 2012: katie feels a call to adopt for the first time but robert (her husband) does not. "we haven't even attempted having biological children yet, for goodness sake!" knowing this is not something we casually enter into, we spend the next 1.5 years simply praying about it.
may 8, 2014: we submit our home study application. we chose our home study agency simply by word of mouth and constantly praying that god would make our next steps very clear. (we went with this one if you're curious)
june 5, 2014: we finish all home study requirements and schedule our first home study visit. home study requirements include things like: a copy of your birth and marriage certificates, reference letters from other people, a background check, a clean bill of health, and general q&a on the adoptive parents.
june 25, 2014: we have our first home study! jackie walked around our home, confirming that we had proper space for our child and first aid available. then she talked to us both, separately, asking some questions about our childhood and hearing our hearts on adoption.
july 7, 2014: we hear about a potential private adoption situation. it will probably not turn into anything.
july 14, 2014: we officially cross that private adoption situation off our list and keep moving forward with our original plan with an agency (this one).
july 24, 2014: we have our second and final home study visit. it only lasts 30 minutes. we loved our social worker and will miss her until we see her again- when our baby has been home 3 months!
july 28, 2014: we get a call at 10 pm letting us know that the private adoption situation that didn't work out a few weeks ago was a possibility again. the baby is due in two weeks. we freak out (she wants us to name him the name we'd already picked out. whoa!), pray a lot, and then surprisingly fall asleep easily. god is good and we trust him.
july 29, 2014: we call our social worker and explain the situation, see if she can expedite our home study finalization, and ask her what the heck we do now. she suggests getting an attorney in alabama, the state the baby will be born in, so we do. he has us call a social worker in the state of alabama who will be in charge of contacting the birthmother, getting family medical histories written down, getting signatures that say the baby has been given up for adoption, etc. basically, she does it all and we love her already.
july 30, 2014: robert starts researching alabama state laws, targets around the hospital the birthmother will deliver at, and other logistics things.
i start praying hard for financial provision (since this is happening quicker than expected) and researching important things like "newborn photos" and "nursery decor" ;)
july 31, 2014: our social worker still can't get in touch with the birthmother and we get a little nervous... has she changed her mind? up to this point, it has all been hear-say. robert is anxious about the situation, already feeling so attached to this baby boy. but he's being an absolute rockstar talking to our attorney's office, getting updates from our social worker, and communicating with his alabama family.
meanwhile, i'm calling all the people who once offered to let us borrow baby items "when the time comes", letting them casually know that the time might possibly be now.
august 2, 2014: our social worker finally makes contact with the birthmother! happy day! robert and i spend the night quickly going through all the emotions. we're getting a baby- fear! oh, this is the end of just the two of us- sad! let's go to target and buy baby things- happy!
our brains feel like they might explode.
august 4, 2014: i call some family members and fill them in. everyone is excited and also shocked that an adoption is progressing so quickly; this was not how we had planned things!
we get a zillion logistics squared away in preparation for us being gone a potential month: haircut, car tags renewed, extra house keys made, closing down my etsy shop and getting out final orders, etc.
we learn that there are some crucial papers that haven't been signed by the birthmother and we pray god continues working miracles to make everything happen. this timeline is extremely expedited and we're so thankful for an attorney's office and social worker who are so willing to work with us on everything.
august 6, 2014: our birthmother and social worker finally sit down to talk and hallelujah, it was a great conversation!! not only were papers signed, but we also learn that the birthmother hasn't had alcohol or done drugs while pregnant and that she is still excited for us to adopt her son. she doesn't know if/when she wants to meet us and that's okay; i'm content to love her from afar for now.
we talk about writing her a note, getting her a gift, just doing something to show our love and admiration for her. i think she's amazing.
august 7, 2014: robert and i share our fun news on facebook and with our church; we are BLOWN AWAY at people's responses. I immediately get texts from people willing to donate baby items they no longer need, the funds start pouring in, and we know we're being covered in prayer. so so cool.
august 9, 2014: surprisingly, it feels like we don't have that much left to do. we have to wash clothes and get packed, but other than that... i think i'll get a pedicure? it's what most moms do before they have a baby right?
august 9, 2014: baby shower day! my friends are the best.
august 12, 2014: we spend the whole day awaiting a phone call that doesn't come. this is your due date baby boy! come out!
briefly, we both panic that the baby has been born and we haven't been alerted. did she change her mind? what now? etc etc etc. but then we talk to our social worker who says she's talked to the birthmother. all is good, she went to the doctor today, and everyone is still healthy- just not ready to come out yet.
i make a baby quilt and can't wait to wrap our sweet son up in it.
we eat at outback to celebrate life and love and all things baby.
i love this man god chose as my husband.
august 13, 2014: we're literally out of things to do. okay, that's a lie. i have an impending pile of thank you notes that need to be written, but i've decided that they'll be better once he's here so i'm waiting on those. i sit outside in this gorgeous fall-like weather. we eat some food. robert gets bored because he keeps not going into work and then a baby keeps not coming.