Still buzzing about our acceptance onto Stage Two, we have the option to take a 6-month gap before we start the next step. However, we don’t want to waste any time.
We email Caroline like a pair of excited gays front row at a Lady Gaga concert. We ask for her to email us some dates for the 3 Day Preparation Training Day, which we have to attend. Its the morning of June 6th 2018 and the next 3 days are intense!
We have just entered the room and been introduced to 3 other couples who are sitting there just as nervous and excited as we are. We start the inductions: Darran & Tim, Matt & Katie, Cassie & Glenn and Matt & Rossi. Little did we know that the next three days would start a blossoming friendship and a WhatsApp Group that won’t stop going off 🙂
We learnt many things on Day One like ‘The Development Wall’, Attachment, Experiences of Neglect and Abused Children, Toxic Stress and Making it Better. We ended the day with a bit of Theraplay and a WARNING that Day Two would be an emotional one. Tim and I went home and thought that Day One was tough and wondered why Day Two would be so emotional…..?
We start with a little introduction…Again. The Social Workers start to talk about loss in a child’s life and that we will be talking about loss within our lives. I’d not long laid my Granddad to rest and struggled to come to terms with what had happened.
I start the conversation off by talking about my Granddad and how I dealt with it. Surprisingly to me I held in my emotions talking about how I missed him and how important he was in my life.
We go round the room and after hearing everyone’s stories of many different types of loss, we were all a mess and very teary, some left the room and tissues were passed around by the bucket load.
Here is where our friendship grew stronger with these 3 couples we had only just met a day ago. We’ve all just shared some personal experiences and we needed to take a break. We finished Day Two with ‘Contact and Making it Better’, ‘What is Resilience’, ‘Family Finding’ and viewing some children’s profiles.
We also got to listen to some of the Mothers accounts of how their children came into care and the Adoption Process. This was hard to watch and hit Tim like a truck. Again we headed home and the journey was silent, not a word spoken to each other and the music was at a minimum (normally blasting out in our car).
The day was so intense we just needed time to reflect and get over what was an emotional day. All I can compare it to is like going to a funeral and crying most of the day, it takes a toll on you and it sure did hit us like a tone of bricks. Although the day was hard we totally understand why we had to go through it, because at some point our forever child will go through loss and probably already has.
It was also a great way for us as a group of people to be able to share personal experiences with a bunch of strangers and show that we all have a heart. This also shows that we are willing to do whatever we need to do to complete this process and help a child have a happy ever after.
This day was a lot lighter than the day before and by the end of it, it was clear that we had formed a close friendship with all 3 couples and continue to do so. We learnt about: ‘The Assessment Process’, ‘The Adoption Panel’, ‘Linking and Matching’, ‘Life as an Adoptive Family’, ‘The Parents Job’, ‘Asking for Help’, ‘Learning to Live Together’ and what we have to offer as ‘Prospective Adoptive Parents’.
I sit here and write the words “Prospective Adoptive Parents” and it gives me chills to think that one day me and Tim are going to be parents. our parents become Grandparents and our family of 3 (onyx the cat) is soon to become a lot bigger.
Stage Two has also consisted of many, many training days which we’ve attended and still have some to attend. There are a few more stages to so I suppose we should find out what’s next… So, what is next?