First off, I apologize it has taking me so long to write this update. This week has been crazy with the new job and to be honest, it took a couple of days to decompress from the meeting itself and sort out what I thought about it.
The meeting went overall, really well. Nothing too surprising happened, with the exception of finding out that there is another family interested in adopting the children as well. That was surprising but not too unexpected. The two boys that we are interested in adopting have lower special needs and a high desire for a family. The workers said that they wanted to explore that family as well to make sure they find the right family for the boys. They stated that they wanted to at least meet with them. I totally understand what they mean and I want the workers to make sure that they have the right family. At first when I heard this, I admit that I was anxious and unsure of how to feel, and at times when I think about it I still am. However, I have to keep reminding myself that God already knows who these boys’ parents will be, the workers are just making the decision now to place them where they should be.
Besides that information the meeting was full of information! It went long, an hour and 45 minutes long, and there was questions and answers the whole time. I feel like we clicked really well with the workers (there were 5 workers for the boys there, our worker and us) and answered all the questions they asked of us. We got more information on the boys and their needs and abilities as well as the reasons behind placements in the past. They asked us about our work schedules, parenting ideas, and many other things.
There was one aspect of the meeting that surprised me. All the boys’ workers present at the meeting had already reviewed our home study. In our home study, there is a section that discusses my past trauma. The workers were very interested in hearing about the effect of the trauma, and spent about 20 minutes asking me questions about it, the effect on daily life, how I cope with x y and z. I have to admit, I had thought that I was prepared for all aspects of the meeting and what could possibly be asked. It is no surprise that the trauma came up. Any good worker would need to make sure I had done my own personal work, especially if children with trauma were coming into the home. What I did not expect is the detailed questions being asked of me. At the time it felt, not invasive per say, but judgmental in a way. I never experienced how difficult it was to explain what is and is not a trigger, how I specifically deal with triggers, and other detailed aspects surrounding life after trauma. Through no fault of their own, I left the meeting feeling like the major aspect of “Katie” that the workers learned about was the trauma. That was NOT how I wanted to present myself to them.
At the beginning of the meeting the workers said that if either of us wanted to not answer any question to just tell them. I was so proud of myself that even through all the detailed questions about my trauma and the effects, I never said I didn’t want to answer or broke down. I know why they were asking and genuinely felt like attempting to explain the things they wanted to know. If they were attempting to make decisions about where to place children, I wanted them to have all information possible. Luckily, I HAVE done to hard work with the trauma and I can talk about it openly and honestly, letting others know what may be hard and what would not be. I hope it come off as open and honest and that they got the answers they wanted. It just bothers me that people may see me as “Trauma Katie”, especially people with such important decisions to make. I don’t see myself like that, but I left the meeting feeling like that. The workers even said “We should ask Joel some questions so Katie doesn’t feel like she’s the only one with stuff to work on”. Talk about intimidating!
At the end of the meeting, the workers encouraged us to give some serious thought to if we wanted to move forward in the process with the boys. They would consider if they wanted to move forward with us in the process too. They mentioned that they would make a decision between families “quickly” (whatever that means in the social services world). At this point we adjourned and indicated that we would get back in touch once decisions were made about moving forward. With this case, “moving forward” means another meeting, this time at our home where we would get copies of redacted profiles. At the end of that meeting the same decision process would take place to decide if both parties want to move forward for the third and final meeting.
Now we are waiting. We have made our intentions clear, that we are more than interested in continuing the process with these boys. My guess is they are waiting to meet with the other family before deciding which direction to go and what with the holiday this week I’m guessing we won’t hear for a while. God keeps trying to teach my patience! This time is a bit easier, thankfully! 🙂