Another birthday and still I hoped and waited.
They sent someone from the Local Authority regarding my initial Adoption query during the Christmas break.
An informal chat.
It would go to a Moderation Panel she said.
When is that, I asked, hoping it would be soon.
In January she said. If successful at Moderation Panel, I would be invited to their Preparation group. When would that be? I asked. March or April, she said but that is full, so probably Summer or October 2011. I nodded and thought: by then I will be another year older before I even start on this journey.
I tried to remain calm.
Preparation group is 4 days she said and is used to reach an agreement to whether you might be suitable to go to the next stage of several months of Assessment to be a Prospective Adopter. Assessment as a Prospective Adopter takes a further 6 months or so, she said.
My skills, experience and the fact that I have been adopted myself would work in my favour, she said.
Yay, this is positive, I thought.
She also said me being single would go against me. Factor#1 against.
She said they already have 4 single people on their books.
There is clearly a list, I thought, slightly crestfallen.
She said whilst my professional work, currently within Education, would be a positive string to my bow it would be seen as negative the geographical area where I worked. What? I said. She said that most of the children they have for adoption would be from around where I worked and this would therefore be seen as a conflicting of interest. Factor#2 against
Then she said that my age would be against me. Factor #3 against
(I am too late I told myself. Why have I left this so long, I cried, internally.)
Finally she said that they don't have many children available for adoption on their books, so it would be doubtful that they would take me on. Factor #4 against
I felt crushed and hope seemed a very dim and distant light in my dark tunnel of deep desire.
But what else am I to do?
I want to be a Mum.
It seemed as if before your potential Parenting skills, gifts, talents, expertise, housing, personality, finances etc are considered, your status was top of their list - in a somewhat hierarchical - and archaic - tick box kind of way. It seemed as if they had an unspoken limit on each category. The categories seemed to be: married,with a partner, single, gay, ethnicity.
So, Moderation Panel seemed to be the first hoop before form filling in could begin or any preparation group or training or assessment as a prospective adopter could begin.
This was beginning to feel like stumbling bocks rather than hoops to jump through.
1: positive factor and 4: factors against seemed a bit grim.
And that was before I have even got to Moderation Panel.
Was there anything else I could do?