We have been approved!
I spent the morning keeping my emotions buried very very deeply, so I could cope with a NO. I was outwardly calm. We left quite early, so we could stop on the way for petrol and coffees. The plan was to be there at least 15 minutes before our appointed meeting time of 11:15. We arrived at 10:30, and sat in the car until almost 11. We signed in then were greeted by T, the social worker manager. A few minutes later our s/w came and the four of us went to a separate building into a waiting room.
T was very positive but understanding, as he was with us 7 years ago when we weren’t approved by the Local Authority where he was a s/w manager at the time. During the waiting time, we talked mostly about nothing important, but we did briefly touch on a few things that are differnet now compared to our last application to be adopters.
A woman came into the room and introduced herself. She was the panel manager (I think that’s what she said, so I’ll stick with that description), and explained that she was going to ask the s/w and manager to come with her and that she would be back up for us in a few minutes. As soon as they left, I stood up and started pacing. I couldn’t be still. And I needed the toilet (again) although I didn’t know where one was and realized that it was just stress, not a real bodily need! I think my pacing made Hubby nervous, as he mentioned that I was making the floor creak. Couldn’t help it…
Eventually the panel manager came up to get us. I was so nervous, and judging how Hubby’s hand felt when we sat down and he reached for my hand, so was he. There was a table with 8 people around it, and space for the two of us. The panel manager re-introduced herself, then asked the others to go around and introduce themselves. There were the following, in addition to our s/w and her manager: the panel advisor (non-voting) who delivered most of the training we’ve had over the past few months; an adopter; a social worker; another adopter; the minute-taker (non-voting); and the medical advisor.
The panel manager started out talking through our strengths. I was worried she’d go on to weaknesses, but she didn’t. She then asked the panel members if they had questions. There were only a few. One was about how Hubby’s daughter felt about us adopting (she’s very happy that we’re doing it, btw). One about Hubby’s commute to work and shifts. One about the demographic of who we want to adopt. Then the panel manager asked us if we had any questions or comments.
If you read my last post, you know that we pre-planned some comments. We wanted to express how far we’ve come since our last adoption application. And that was it. We went upstairs with our s/w and her manager, and waited a few minutes. It didn’t take long. The panel manager told us that we were unanimously approved. I burst into tears and Hubby hugged me (and said later that he almost cried). Then we sat there for a couple of minutes talking to s/w & manager before we left. As we left, our s/w reminded us again to register with Adoption Link.
Then we sat in the car for a few minutes. First we phoned Hubby’s daughter to let her know the good news, then sent messages to lots of other people. Then we drove home. 😀