Our Adoption Story: pt. 3

Read part one here.

Read part two here.

We continued to visit with them on the weekends and talking on the phone during the week. Billy was able to get every weekend off for several weeks in a row so we could have time with them.
I felt very strongly that we not buy them gifts or take them to many places in the beginning. There is a tendency to give foster children lots of stuff, I guess to make up for the shitty life they have. But i think all that does is create more problems for them (and their parents) later on. Things can not replace love and attention. Once we've established love and attention and trust, then buying them things is not taking the place of anything.
Simply put, we (my husband & I) had to be enough. Just us...not what we could buy them.
So we had picnics, went to the park, hung out in our pool and played games, and during those times, we talked and we listened.

My mom & Jacqueline in front of our home:

This next post is from 3/18/03 and was titled "We just spent our first weekend with the kids".

I'm wiped out! LOL
Not so much from them doing anything wrong...just from having three kids in the house, well four if you count my husband. Guess who broke my gazing ball with the basketball on Saturday and a drinking glass by pushing a swing to hard on Sunday? No, not the little kids...it was the big one...the 37 year old one!
The weekend was pretty good. There was a lot of testing and watching us from all three of them. Their foster mom sent them with a lot of their toys so they had a lot to play with. She told us to keep all the stuff she packed at our house and that she would send them with more things every time we pick them up. They have more stuff than i did at their age! Cimion (the 10 yr. old boy) even has his own computer! We discussed how to treat my dog & iguana and that went over well. We went over some of the rules, like no hitting and not going into our bedroom.
We're picking them up again this Saturday and they're staying with us for NINE DAYS!!!!!!!! It's spring break and their case worker asked us if we would like to have them and of course we said yes. Our placement won't start until school ends so it'll give us a chance to get used to having them in the house.
Looks like we're moving right along.

Easter 2003, in front of our home (the white fence is lo longer there):

Over the next several weeks, we continued spending time with them, meeting with their case worker, talking with their foster parents and getting to know them, and then getting to know us.

Here is an update post I wrote on 5/503:

We're still visiting with the three kids when school is not in session, like weekends and holidays. When school is over, we'll do a 10 day visit, then they'll go back to their foster home for about 4-5 days, then they'll come back for a 3 week visit, which will bring us to the end of June. Towards the end of that 3 week visit, we'll meet with our case worker and let her know if we want to start placement. If we're all in agreement, they won't leave after that visit and our placement will start July 1 and continue for about 3 months. If that goes well we'll probably finalize late September, early October.

Things have been going okay, nothing we haven't been able to handle. Cimion (the 10 yr. old boy) is on his best behavior for fear that we'll send him back. It isn't like he's a behavioral child to begin with, he's pretty easy going but right now he's just to good to be true. I know he'll let his guard when he feels more comfortable and as he trusts us more. Chawna (8 next month, girl) is a handful. One of the issues she's got is terrible social skills; never says please or thank you, doesn't share, doesn't take turns etc. She's like a 2 year old in that way. She's got some other issues but this is the one that really needs some help fast. Jacqueline (4 yr. old girl) has been acting out lately (tantrums, whining) and it's all coming from this confusion of being adopted and having to leave her "mom". She's been with their foster mom since she's 9 months old and, to her, this is her mommy.

Things are actually going well though! We have boundries, rules & consequences set in place. It'll be easier to enforce them when they move in and for right now we pick & choose our battles. We've met with their therapists & teachers and they all say that they talk about us in a positive way and that they want to be adopted.

Billy & I are attending the adoption conference in Orlando this weekend (Thursday-Saturday) and then picking up the kids for an overnight visit until Sunday so I won't be around until after that. We're looking forward to the conference, the agency is paying for our registration & hotel. I'll tell you guys all about it when we get back and the kids leave.

Billy & I with our adoption case worker Pat at a weekend long adoption conference in Orlando. She nominated us and we were chosen out of all the couples in our county.
Here is a picture of us with Pat, at the conference:

Continued in part four

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