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Showing posts from June, 2016

Are You Sure?

Love all the comments! So interesting to see how everyone handles the name change aspect. True Story, Sarah asked me how to spell her new last name tonight. And her first.....(Face Palm)
One of the questions I got was why we didn't need to be at the final court hearing.
Each county in Illinois does their adoptions differently. In theory we could have filed the adoption in any county in Illinois. From what I can tell each requires two hearings. In some counties the family goes in person to the 1st, in others you go in person to the last. Some counties only do adoptions two times a month, others four days a week.
The county their case was out of was almost 2 hours away and very small county. Our attorney wasn't familiar with their procedures but offered to file in that county if we wanted to. We liked the idea of the same judge handling the adoption but by the time we got the point we could actually petition for the adoption we decided it wasn't worth the hassle.
The county we l…

Reader Question: Did You change their names?

Yes we did. We actually started using their new names shortly after their good bye visit with Sheila last August. So the only name that really changed this week was their last name (kind of, one of them actually had our last name). We had started using them so we wouldn't have to try to do a name change mid-school year. Plus the kids had only been in the school the last 1/2 of the year so they didn't know everyone yet. The school was great about going with the new first names.
At some point Simon spontaneously asked his teacher if he could change his name tag on his desk to our last name. He was tired of waiting on the legal stuff. He started to write Simon Almost Last Name on his papers. So we asked all the kids and they asked for the same update. Their report cards and benchmarks still had their legal names. 
The name change was a bit cumbersome at first. We sounded like owls because someone would ask for a person by their birth name and we would all answer "Who?". W…

That Time My Kids Were Adopted And No One Bothered To Tell Me

So after the whole "we need to continue the adoption finalization date because we forgot to put one of your kids' names on some important paperwork" thing, the judge didn't care and entered in the final order of adoption on the date originally scheduled.
Except no one called to tell me until the next morning. So while I was having my 2am Pop-Tart meltdown, my kids were actually mine.
But that's foster care. Critical information (Hey your names changed! And you are now financially responsible for day care.) but no one bothers to give it to you.
Our attorney called at a really frantic moment as I was trying to get myself and the 5 kids out the door to drop off at two different daycares and I was totally caught off guard when she told me it was final.
Let me tell you, I couldn't really enjoy it because I was so frustrated by the chaos they all created just days before in messing with my schedule. I had no sleep, was late, and totally overwhelmed by the idea that it …

Can't Sleep

We talked about famous adoptees in family therapy tonight. I can't sleep so I went from looking for lists of famous adoptees to searching on the Adopt Us Kids website. Did you know JC Chasez (From 'NSync was adopted from foster care? By his birth mother's former foster family.

I need to start running again to help manage some of this stress/emotion. And probably get back into therapy for myself. The one therapist I had started seeing last summer didn't have kids and practiced Mindfulness. That's not what I need. What I need, is a safe place to cry for an hour a week. Someone who has walked this same path who will just let me talk and cry. Otherwise I am sitting in the dark eating a pop-tart at 2:15Am while typing on my iPad and wiping away tears with a paper towel.

The call with my Mom yesterday was really triggering for me. It brought me back to just before the Fab Four went home. I feel like we barely survived that. There is so much more complexity to our curren…


My nerves are fried today. Mostly because I'm just tired of living in foster care land. I fully recognize that we have had a better experience than a lot of people, but I'm just ready to be done. 
I had over an hour in the car alone with my thoughts on the way to Solana's permanency hearing this morning. That's a long time to be alone with your thoughts. Especially with very little sleep because a certain 10 month old decided she was going to scream the house down from 12:30 until 1:30 when I decided she and I both needed to be in my bed asleep. 
Today was her 1st permanency hearing even though next month marks a year she will have been in foster care (her whole life). Neither bio parent showed up.  Which doesn't reflect well on them except all the reports were positive and showing progress being made towards the case plan. This of course meant the judge only had Caseworker #4 and myself to talk to. (Neither attorney had heard from their client.) So when he asked me i…

Open Adoption- Visit

I had reached out to Sheila to let her know the adoption would soon be final and to set up a visit so she wouldn't have to ask us. We were a few months away from the year mark of last seeing her and I thought it would be better if she could see all that we are trying to do to keep our children connected to their birth family. She of course put the ball in our court to plan the visit, so we did. 
We picked a garden in her town that the kids enjoying going to. It's the type of place you can only spend a few hours at so there would be a natural break in leaving. It's about an hour away so we also planned on getting lunch at a habachi resturant we really like.
Overall, I think the visit went well. We had prepped the kids at family therapy about things we wouldn't want to discuss (like Solana's permanency) but things that we were sure she'd want to hear about. School, camp, swimming. The kids were really nervous but afterwards they told us it was easier than they expe…

Damn Disney Decals

So back during one of trips to Disney with the Fab Four we bought those stick figure decals for the minivan. I never put them on the car for fear Maria would see and take offense. When the kids went home I sent their stick figures with them and hung on to mine, Hubby's and the dog. 
On a subsequent trip, we bought new stick figures for the final four. They've been sitting in a drawer for at least year. Well when Simon puked in my car two weeks ago I had justification to spend the money on a detail service. (I'm a little spoiled because they actually come to our office parking lot each Thursday.) And since the car was freshly washed I though it would be a good time to apply the stick figure forever family to the window.
Wrong move. The kids were like "what about Solana? Where is her's? Is there room for one? Can we get her one?
With their permanency seems to come a harder time remembering that their sister is still in foster care. Or maybe they just have more bandwidt…