I heard someone refer to their upcoming adoption as being "paper pregnant" and I liked it. Waiting for a child, no matter how God brings them to you, causes worries, joy, massive food consumption (stress induced or not), room preparations, feelings of panic that your life is about to change forever, insecurities, lots of informational reading, tossing and turning at night, and impatient excitement.
However, in adoption, unlike in pregnancy, you endure these things often for over a year! Being more abstract than an increasing belly, people forget there's a child growing in your heart if not in your body. And like the feelings of discomfort when a baby is almost to term, adoptive parents huff and groan and become exasperatedly impatient as we wait...and wait...and wait...
In pregnancy you mark time by weeks and trimesters, adoptive parents mark time by application deadlines, home study approvals, and licensing dates. Here's how we've marked time this past year:
February 2010- We both felt God call us to adopt now.
March 2010- Filled out applications with One Heart Family Ministries to start licensing classes.
June 2010- Begin licensing classes and start our home study (and lots of paperwork).
August 2010- Finish 9 weeks of foster licensing classes, lots of paperwork, and complete our home study.
September 2010- Finish adoption licensing classes.
October 2010- Wait....and take First Aid and CPR certification class.
November 2010- We're licensed foster parents!
January 2011- Get our first foster placement call but decide it's not a good fit for us.
March 2011- We're licensed adoptive parents! We are searching and waiting and praying...huff...groan...huff :)