Our Adoption Story: Pt. 4

Part one is here
Here's part two
Part three

Our placement started July 2, 2003. This was a very big step for all of us. It was during placement that they were returned back to foster care by the other two familes that originally had wanted to adopt them. I knew that Cimion & Shawna were hesitant and scared and they had a very right to be. here we were, the third couple telling them that we were going to be their "forever" parents and that they could trust us. To them, those words means next to nothing.

We met Jennifer Grillo (their case worker, on the right) and Sheila Aja (their guardian ad litem, on the left) at the DCF office.

We had to sign a ton of papers like paperwork giving us permission to get them medical treatment and enroll them in school.

When we were done, we sealed it with a kiss. Jennifer said no other couples had ever asked her to take a picture of them kissing after signing. LOL!!

At this point, we had been visiting with the kids since February and had done several overnight visits. It was getting difficult to move to the next level with them going back and forth between us and their foster parents. We tried to keep their lifestyle as close as possible to the one they had with their foster parents so they wouldn't get to confused. Things like bedtimes, certain rules, meal times.

When they moved in we spent a lot of time working on the house to accomodate three extra people and their stuff. School was out so we had lots of free time to hang out and get to know each other better.

Cimion was on his best behavior all through placement, as he had been throughout our visting period. We knew his true self would emerge soon and we were ready.

Cimion & Shawna continued with their speech/language therapy, occupational/physical therapy, med. check ups and mental health therapy throughout all this.
We also went to register Jacqueline for kindergarten. (If I knew then what I knew now, I would have homeschooled her from the start)

Some highlights during this three month period was the kids calling us mom and dad, Shawna telling me she hated me and Cimion insisting he had an uncle that was coming to get him. Never a dull moment!

During this time also, we started calling the youngest one by her real name, Jacqueline. She had been called Jackie up to that point but we weren't really fond of that name. Also their foster parents told the kids that they should start calling them by their first names, Pat & Bill, instead of mom and dad.

The following pictures were all taken during our placement, from July-October of 2003.

Swimming in our pool:

We invited their foster family over a lot during that time (and we currently still keep in touch with them). This was one of the visits with their foster mom Pat, foster brother Lance (who got adopted the following year by a couple not far from us and we enjoy getting together.) and their foster sister Jessica.

Playing dress up with Billy: (Isn't he a cutie?)

Jacqueline's 5th birthday:

Cimion's 11th birthday:

Continued in part five

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