International Adoption: Hope on Hold

  The desire to love and parent a child is so strong for many people that cost, wait times, and uncertainty are all deemed worthwhile to fulfill this dream.  Families that have welcomed their child home will tell you they would do it all again, despite the arduous journey.  

 

The desire to love and parent a child is so strong for many people that cost, wait times, and uncertainty are all deemed worthwhile to fulfill this dream.  Families that have welcomed their child home will tell you they would do it all again, despite the arduous journey.  

As each day gets colder, the sharp ache of waiting deepens, cutting through her soul like ice.  This time last year, Bobbie Sue* believed that by now she would be overseas meeting her beloved child, and basking in the joy of finally being blessed with a forever family through international adoption.  But as the leaves fall, and another season passes away, she wonders if her hope of becoming a mother will ever be fulfilled.

Her journey to parenthood began in Africa almost 10 years ago, when the idea of adopting from the place that stole her heart was first sparked by a very poor birth mother, burdened with the responsibility of caring for 7 young children on her own, suggested to Bobbie Sue that she could adopt her youngest child. At the time, she simply shrugged off the idea, as she knew she was simply not ready to become a parent.

Now, while friends, family and colleagues celebrate their new bouncing bundles of joy, and embark on the adventure of new parenthood, she sits alone at home each night, trying to sort through the chaos of this journey called adoption, and enduring the uncertainty of not knowing if or when she will be so blessed.  Her pain is silent, her suffering invisible to the outside world, but she prays for the courage to have hope.

After living overseas for several years, Bobbie Sue returned to Canada about 2 years ago and started the rollercoaster of international adoption, starting with the PRIDE course and the excruciating home study process (which left her emotionally raw and vulnerable), followed by the vacuum of a four month wait to be deemed eligible by MCYS to adopt a single child from another country.  The flurry of gathering what seemed like a lifetime of documentation for her dossier kept Bobbie Sue very distracted for a few months, but as soon as that binder was approved overseas, the oppressive vacuum of waiting quickly returned. 

So it’s been 22 months and counting, and waiting, and hoping. That might not seem very long to others, but to Bobbie Sue it feels like an eternity, especially when the rollercoaster has taken some very sharp turns in the past 2 months, including a significant slowdown in the paperwork process overseas and the risk of a change in the law which may disqualify her from adopting as a single parent. In a moment of pure desperation and utter frustration, she almost gave up on the journey, declaring that she was just going to walk away from it all.  Now she stands at the crossroads of deferred hope and unfulfilled desire, and wonders if the next phone call or email will be the one, THE ONE, that will make her heart soar…..

The desire to love and parent a child is so strong for many people that cost, wait times, and uncertainty are all deemed worthwhile to fulfill this dream.  Families that have welcomed their child home will tell you they would do it all again, despite the arduous journey.  


*A pseudonym has been used in this story

Disclaimer "These stories are the perspectives of awaiting parents. Adopt4Life aims to give parents a voice, and as such stories remain unchanged even if they may appear controversial. It is the hope of Adopt4Life that by bringing awareness to the thoughts and feelings of families, together we can work to bring change that benefits everyone."