Frustrated

I know I should stay away from adoptuskids.org but on some days when I am really ready to be licensed and on our way to being matched I check out the new faces. It’s always sad, and I’ve written before about how conflicted I feel about photo listings of kids. But today I noticed SO MANY new North Carolina kids, single kids and sibling groups, that we would have loved to welcome into our home. We still would love to welcome into our home. And it just makes me so pissed that there are social workers, permanency specialists, adoption specialists that are standing in the way of really good families for these children. I can only hope that these children are not on the website long, that there are wonderful families waiting for them already… I can also hope to expedite our process through Pennsylvania and work on loving some great PA kids! Our meeting with the permanency specialist and office director is next Tuesday. I can’t wait!

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New Week

Sorry no post Friday, I didn’t have it in me. I was… defeated. Last week was a rough week. Little One stayed with my mom, the dogs were boarded in the pet hotel, my husband was in Pennsylvania, and the movers came Monday. They packed up Monday and loaded the truck Tuesday. They were pleasant and efficient. Because we were supposed to move in Friday the 10th, most everything was packed. I kept out a little bit of clothes for Little One and myself. I kept it low key, sneakers and Uggs, PJs and the bare essentials for cosmetics. All of her new toys from Christmas were packed. I would come to regret this later! I spent the rest of the week cleaning the Raleigh house in preparation for it to be listed. And while I was there one day (that super cold day) a pipe burst and I had to have the water turned off and pay a (very nice) plumber $400 to fix it. Awesome.

Dealing with Wells Fargo for our mortgage, however, was not fun. I don’t know whether to write a brief synopsis or all of the crap that happened because it has been total BS. Basically 5 weeks after we went under contract, Wells Fargo denied us the loan that is HALF of what they pre-approved us for. And not because we don’t make enough money, we make plenty. Not because of our credit, we are in the top credit tier. Not because we have a bad history with them on our current mortgage payments, because we’ve never missed one. Not because we’ve had a bad history with them on our car payments, because we’ve never missed one. They denied our loan because they can’t verify my husband’s commission. Which is about 40% of what he earns. My husband works for a large tech company, and there are probably about 70,000 other people in his company that make salary and commission like he does. I can’t imagine this means that NO ONE at his company can get a mortgage with Wells Fargo. They also have to count our current Raleigh house as debt, even though we have a guaranteed buyout from my husband’s company. So basically instead of moving into our new house on Friday, we were pulling things together to find a new lender and writing angry emails to people at the relocation company that referred us to Wells Fargo and to any Wells Fargo executive we could find. My husband got a call from someone with Wells Fargo in their “National Escalation Team” who is trying to salvage our loan and we’re working with a local bank who can process it no problem. Well, securing the loan is no problem, there is a huge glaring problem for us going with the local bank… our closing will be postponed by 2 weeks. Which is 3 weeks from now!! My daughter is sleeping on an air mattress and I am sleeping in my parent’s guest room. I love my parents, but 3 more weeks of staying with them is a really freaking long time. My poor husband is all alone in a very expensive furnished studio apartment. And I have 4 pairs of yoga pants, no hair dryer, nothing to wear to my nephew’s baptism in 2 weeks, etc. The dogs are boarded, which I feel so horrible about, and that costs $50+ a day. Yuck. Last week was a nightmare, to say the least. We have no idea when we are moving in, no guarantee yet from Wells Fargo or the new lender, and we’re not even sure if we can get the house.  We’re hoping to find out more today, but at the rate this is going I won’t be surprised if it’s Friday before I know when we’ll be able to move in!

Another (Small) Update

Happy Monday y’all! Hope you survived the weekend.

I guess the universe heard me Friday with my post on waiting to hear from the county regarding foster care training. We received a small packet in the mail on Saturday inviting us to the next MAPP session, which starts October 19th and is 5 Saturdays long (9:00 am to 4:00 pm). The letter also stated that some but not all background checks are done prior to training, so there is a chance after training that you will not be able to proceed due to past criminal/traffic history. While I don’t believe this applies to us, I definitely would prefer to be cleared prior to training! I get a background check every year for work so I’m not worried about mine but I wonder for my husband. They sent an RSVP of sorts with the letter, where you could say YES! I will start MAPP training on the 19th. You can mark NO! I cannot make it but I am still interested in foster care. And lastly you can mark NO! I am no longer interested in foster care. It’s amazing to me that they didn’t send any packets of info regarding foster care or want to meet with us prior to training. Unfortunately with my husband’s work schedule we can’t do Saturday classes. So I reluctantly sent back the RSVP NO! I cannot make it but I am still interested.

In other news, my husband has a second interview for the Pennsylvania job. We’ve just gone through this and he didn’t get it so I am trying not to plan as much this time and just go with the flow!

Small Update

Or non-update. We sent in our application to our county’s foster care division of their Social Services office nearly 4 weeks ago. I guess I will be calling Monday morning to find out if they have everything they need to proceed! In other news, my husband is interviewing again for a promotion. This one is also in Pennsylvania, but in the Harrisburg area. So glad I kept my info on foster care and adoption in Pennsylvania after the last round!

How To Help

So I am sure there are many of you out there like my family, waiting in limbo to be licensed for foster care or adoption. Or right now it doesn’t fit your family situation (work, marriage, house size, etc). But there are other ways to help! For my job I have worked with a wonderful nonprofit in the Raleigh area called The Hope Center. They work to help the homeless and nearly homeless find jobs, housing, transportation, counseling, etc. Because a large part of the homeless population was at some point in foster care, they also work with children who have been or currently are in foster care to make sure they graduate high school, get into college or find a job. They have mentoring for these children and also tutoring. Many need tutoring to get their GEDs. I am lucky to have been accepted as a tutor for this program and I am very excited. You can read more about The Hope Center at their website (link below).

AdoptUSKids also has a great list of other ways that you can help in your area. These include becoming a mentor, volunteering a service like photography, help to fundraise or donate to foster care organizations, and becoming a court-appointed special advocate (link below).

It is hard sometimes to look past our own lives since we are so busy with work, family, errands, doctor’s appointments and the like. But many of these activities could only take up a few hours a month and be done as a family. I hope you’ll consider other ways to help!

AdoptUSKids: http://www.adoptuskids.org/join-the-conversation/ways-to-help

Hope Center: http://hopecenteratpullen.org/

I heard back!

The “Child Centered Recruiter” that I emailed from our previous agency regarding an available sibling set posted on Facebook has returned my email! She said that we need a “pre-placement assessment” in order to forward it to the social worker assigned to that sibling set’s case. So I emailed the woman at the agency (“Jane Lynch”) that we met with in July to see if we have such an assessment or not. I am guessing that we don’t, but I really am not sure what they consider a “pre-placement assessment.” What I found online for pre-placement assessments, in regards specifically to North Carolina and adoption, states this:

“A Pre-Placement Assessment consists of minimally two interviews with the prospective adoptive parent.  Couples must complete separate and joint interviews to provide background information, discuss desires, expectations, and work on any concerns or barriers to providing long-term care for a child.

Prospective adoptive parents must also complete new finger prints even if they were previously finger printed as a foster parent.”

We definitely had the interviews and we paid for our background checks but we stopped at finger printing because of the indication from the woman at the agency that they wouldn’t be able to place us with young children. She emailed me back this morning regarding the status of our file:

You are correct.  You do not have a PPA. You withdrew your application shortly after your first interview and your case was closed.  If you wish to follow through with the adoption process, you will need to reapply.  Please be advised that the children that you are interested in will likely be placed long before we can complete your PPA and they are not indicative of available children, in general.”

So basically I spend about $60 early this summer for them to tell me that they don’t have children in their care that fit my family. Then, three months later when the agency advertises them through social media she assures me that this sibling set is an anomaly and that if I am interested, I am more than welcome to pay again to have all the background checks, marriage license, etc re-run. But it probably will take too long to be considered for this sibling group.

What do I take away from this situation? If we had continued with her agency in July then we would have our pre-placement assessment by now. But she said they don’t have sibling groups like this one available, so we sought out other resources. The logic (or lack thereof) of it all is just making me go insane!