I'm happy to say that the visit with the Social Worker (SW) was great! (Phew!!!) I was ready to go but oh so nervous. Even I, who likes to talk, wondered what we were going to talk about that would take 3 hours this week and the same amount of time next week. Did I have that much to say? Yes! (I'm sure none of you are surprised!)
I was ready around 8:00am for our 8:30 visit, coffee was brewing and cinnamon buns were baking (oh no....burning!) in the oven. (Hey, I'm a master chef at cooking up these morsels. I can pop that can with the best of them but this time they burned! Oh well, nothing a sharp knife to cut off the bottoms and a candle to try to eliminate the smokey smell couldn't hurt. Guess I was nervous...I can normally do these in my sleep...practice makes perfect and I've practiced a lot!) If you want me to come teach a Pillsbury cooking class to you just let me know. Cinnamon buns, sliced cookies, and my own personal favourite...open a package of frozen cookies, place on tray and bake. You name it, I can usually bake it. Yup...that's me...Ontario's own Martha Stewart!
OK - now to get back to what you're really interested in:
The SW arrived right on time and we quickly got to work. He plugged in his laptop and we began to chat. I handed over my police check, RCMP check, fingerprints, Notice of Assessment and we listed my assets vs. liabilities and signed off the paper with him stating that I agree to work with him as a SW acting on my behalf with the Ontario Government. Basically, lots of legal stuff to begin with.
After that it was a wonderful trip down memory lane. We discussed myself, my parents, brothers, education, medical history, educational history, my jobs, what did I like to do for fun. Just a ton of things, many that I hadn't thought about in a long time but that made me smile.
Towards the end of the morning he looked through the house (Yeah! All that cleaning was worth it!) and then discussed what we'll talk about next week:
- International adoption
- Potential problems of adopting a child who has been in an orphanage
- My parenting plan
- Support system of family and friends
- Initial thoughts/plans re: daycare
- Support systems available in my area for potential physical/emotional needs the child may have (Sick Kids Hospital is in Toronto and there's a clinic in Mississauga that specializes in internationally adopted children)
It seems we're more than half way through the homestudy and just have next week's visit + a few references to receive and we'll have my homestudy finished. We're hoping it will be done by the end of November and so far that looks like a reasonable target.
In my 'ideal plan' I'd really like to see it go to the Ontario Government for their approval as early in December as possible. With more holidays than normal during Christmas & New Year's, I'm guessing approvals will slow down. Lately it seems referrals are running about 9 months from the time a file is logged into China until the referral is received. If the time frames remain similar to what's happening now, I'm thinking it may be early in 2007 when I will travel to China with my parents to get precious baby Hannah! In some ways that seems like forever yet I'm sure the time will fly!
Thank you for your continued interest and prayers in this wonderful journey! I am so happy to be able to share this with you and am encouraged daily by people asking me how things are going. Please feel free to ask and also to ask any questions you may have. I've learned so much and I like nothing more than sharing with you. If you have a question...ask away! You can email me (link is to the right of this post) or ask a question in the comments section.
One more big step towards mommyhood....CHECK!