Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Near Miss

Whether you're actively waiting in a pool to be picked for an adoption or you know people that are, that means that you have likely found yourself at one point asking/answering the question "Have you heard anything new?"

After being in the waiting pool for over 17 months, our highlights of that period have been limited to responding to the occasional screening email, updating our materials, and getting a new counselor.  Effectively, we didn't have any updates that got us any closer to an adoption than we were on Day 1 in the waiting pool.  On Monday, we had a case where that changed, albeit briefly.  That day, we got a high priority phone call for a screening.  In this case, it was for a last minute placement which meant we had to call back with our answer in less than 2 hours.

Just like all other screenings, saying yes to the situation only meant that our profile would be presented.  However, the unique situation with receiving a phone call from a counselor about a case where a baby girl had already been born was much more real (in comparison to the typical screening email).  Andy and I talked through the situation and said "yes" to being presented.

When I called the counselor back to say "yes," I also learned that a relatively small number of families were being contacted.  Being the engineer I am, the situation made it even more of a realistic possibility that we could be selected within hours out of a small group of adoptive families.

After months of waiting, it was tough not to daydream about the possibility of being chosen.  I found myself filling out a FMLA form for work, looking forward to spending time with a newly expanded family, and trying to pick out favorite baby girl names off our list despite telling myself that the odds of being chosen were still well under a 50-50 chance.  The sheer change in perspective from waiting indefinitely to possibly being chosen in mere hours or minutes was transformative.  Unfortunately, it was only temporary.

By the end of Monday, Andy and I had not gotten "the call."  We assumed that we were not chosen.  Tuesday morning, the counselor that had originally contacted us was very kind to follow up by email.  This sort of follow up rarely happens for screenings, and it was helpful for us to have some level of closure to know that another family was chosen.

Moving forward again, this doesn't really change anything.  We are still one adoptive family among many others waiting to be chosen to parent a child.  However, for a short time, we were able to experience clear optimism, excitement, and hope.  These sorts of feelings remind us just how much we've invested into having a second child and how much we still hope for that to someday happen.