Friday, January 29, 2016

Available situation- sibling group of 5

       I got an email this morning from one of the adoption lawyers I follow, and he asked that this situation be shared so that the right family can be found for these kids that will allow them to be together again. I'm just going to copy and paste the email, as he has given permission for public sharing. Just because the situation involves the Florida foster care system does NOT mean that the adoptive parents need to live in Florida. I don't have any involvement in this situation whatsoever, so contact him directly with questions or interest. Also feel free to share further!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Post Placement Visit 1

       About an hour ago, our social worker left from our 1st post placement visit. Like the earlier homestudy process, the post placement process will vary by state. This variation will include both the number of post placement visits required for finalization and their content. Our social worker actually had a print-out with her since Roo's birth state (which will also be the state of finalization) has a specific list of questions that they want asked, and these questions are different than the standard questions of our home state.

The joys of genetic variation

      You don't see many lighthearted things related to adoption, so here is one: sometimes, having a child who does not share your genes is awesome. Researchers have found that sleeping through the night is largely genetic. In other words, good sleepers are born, not made. Our son woke up every 3-4 hours until right around his first birthday-- something that my mother has said that I did, as well. Apparently, he got the "it's okay, no one around here needs to sleep" gene from me! When we began planning for another baby, I was prepared for another year of exhaustion. Baby Girl (who I have decided to call Roo on the blog because of her love of being worn around in my Kangaroo carrier*) is a month old today and, for the past week or so, has gotten in a routine of only waking up one time between her 8pm bedtime and 5am. It is glorious. She has "I like to sleep genes." Lord knows she wouldn't have gotten those from our gene pool.

* I have this LILLEbaby babywearing carrier and LOVE it! We used it with our son for about a year (even went hiking with it!) and now are using it again with Roo. They hold up well in the wash and aren't as hot as the Ergo's, plus they are super comfortable with the extra padding on the back supports.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Where to find available unmatched situations

        Hi all! Baby girl is almost 4 weeks old, and all is well. She is happy and healthy and loved. We have our first post placement visit next week, which I will write an update about after it happens. I'm starting to go through and delete all of my copious adoption-related notes from my computer, so I'll be sharing some random things here and there as I find information that I saved that others might find helpful. Today, I'm going to share some links to pages that post available, unmatched situations that anyone who is homestudy ready can apply for. Sometimes, agencies have expectant mothers who cannot be well matched with any PAP who is signed with that agency. When this happens, they often post the situation as an "available situation" or "unmatched situation" on webpage so that other PAPs are able to see the profile and apply. All of the links that I am going to post do not require a fee to see the page, nor do they require a fee to inquire about a situation, nor do they require you to become a client of the agency to submit your profile for consideration. This is an important point because many agencies maintain an "available situations" page, but if you write or call to inquire about one of the situations posted, they will not give you any information or allow you to submit  profile unless you first sign with them.  We actually matched with Anne through one of these pages rather than through our own agency.

Monday, January 4, 2016


    ICPC (or the Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children) is one of the most unpredictable parts of the legal half of the adoption process in terms of trying to make a timeline and figure out logistical plans. In a nutshell, ICPC is the process that supervises placing a child born in one state into the care of parents who plan to transport that child to another state, given that each state is given quite a bit of freedom in developing their own adoption laws and protocols. As adoptive parents, you cannot legally leave the state that the child was born in until you have received ICPC clearance.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Newborn Withdrawal (NAS- Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome)

        Trying to research NAS was one of the most nerve-wracking things of the last weeks of Anne's pregnancy. Would Baby Girl go through withdrawal? How bad would it be? Would she have to go to the NICU? Would she suffer?
       I learned this week in the hospital that the reason there is no concrete information available about NAS is that it is totally unpredictable. The doctors told me that they have seen multiple instances of two women with the exact same medication/substance use profile, and one of their babies has absolutely no withdrawal symptoms but the other one will end up in the NICU for 3 weeks. They have seen women on extremely high doses of methadone give birth to a babies who end up with a couple of mild symptoms, while some women on doses of opiate pain relievers considered to be safe for pregnancy watch their babies suffer from serious withdrawal for days or weeks. Even in Anne's case, there were some doctors and nurses who looked at her chart and said "I wouldn't be worried about that baby" while others said "You should prepare yourself for the baby needing step-down therapy in the NICU." So, first and foremost, no one is going to be able to give you a prediction about if the baby you are hoping to adopt will go through withdrawal and if so, how bad it will be.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Hospital Stay & Discharge

   Yesterday afternoon, we got to take Baby Girl home from the hospital. She ended up being there for 5 days, which is the minimum recommended for NAS (withdrawal) monitoring and observation. Since she never ended up needing to go to NICU, we were able to leave after this minimum monitoring period. She did have some NAS symptoms, though-- I'll write more about that later. But for now, I'm going to summary what our hospital experience over the past 5 days was like.