I should probably add the word "Officially" into my title. Like I mentioned before, we have been considering adoption even before we were married. For us, it's something that we have always planned on doing. It was just never the right time. So for the past 8 years or so I have been researching, reading and asking questions. Anytime I come across a family that has adopted I asked questions. In the last year or so I have started joining adoption blogs and message boards so I could gain some insight. I talked to people that adopted infants from private adoptions, people who did international adoptions, and people that have adopted from foster care.
Private infant adoption sounds wonderful because the transition period is easy! The baby eats, sleeps and poops! Each child will still need to come to grips with their adoption at some point and in their own way. The downside for this one for us is that most birth mothers would not choose a family of four that has no infertility problems. Also, because we would be dealing with private agencies the cost can be rather high.
International adoption has always appealed to me. When I was in high school I wanted to adopt a little girl from Romania. By the time I was married and started looking into it more Romania had closed their adoption program. From what I have found, most countries will not allow us to adopt from their overfilled orphanages because we already have four children. Their are a few countries in Africa that would allow us to do adopt. We may still consider this at some point in the future.
We have chosen to adopt from foster care. Please don't confuse this with foster-adopt. We will be matched with our children before they come into our home and so the time period from when they enter our home until we go to court will be less than a year. These are children who are wards of the state and are waiting to be adopted. Many people choose to foster-adopt, but we have decided that it will be important for us to know from the beginning that those children really are ours :-) Also, by going about it this way it will enable us to homeschool all of our children instead of sending some off to public or private school. I think that this will be one thing that will greatly help our bonding as a family.
Once we decided on foster care started looking for agencies. We narrowed it down to two and met with both of them. We decided to go with the second agency that we met with. We filled out the application and our training will start in late July. I set up a baby-sitting/piano lesson swap so our kids will have friends to play with while we spend the total of 24 hours in training. After that we have the dreaded home study! While I am nervous about it I also realized that I've never met someone that failed a home study. So what's to worry about?
Anyway, I just thought I'd give you a peek into how our journey began. Now that you're up-to-date I'll be filling you in as we go along!