Wow! Where to begin...
Hi everyone! Thank you so much for visiting our site! We're sure you've had plenty of time to look around, so we are going to skip with the introduction and just get to the good stuff - what we've been up to the last month and a half!
We'll start with the good stuff... We are nearly finished with our home study. The past month or so, we have had essentially every piece of our life completely scrutinized. We have submitted more financial documentation about ourselves than we even knew existed, we have read novels and written book reports, we have taken drug tests and had medical examinations, we have taken online classes, we have spoken about every intimate detail of our lives in about six different ways (autobiographies, interviews, questionnaires, references, etc.) No stone goes unturned! This week we had our home inspection. We cleaned our house from top to bottom. We even learned how to re-caulk a bathtub - we're pretty proud about that. Because of Covid, the inspection itself was pretty brief, but we think it went really well! Toast was so excited to have someone in our house for the first time in months - maybe even a little too excited... Our social worker was so nice about all of the extra love Toast gave her.
Our fourth and final interview is in a month. We have answered most questions about our life from birth to present day. Our next conversation is about our careers and our parenting styles (daycare, discipline, sleep training, etc.) We would have had our meeting sooner, but we found out our FBI background check/fingerprints are delayed 12-18 weeks due to Covid. To put things into perspective, it usually averages 3-5 weeks. We're bummed to hear about the major delay, but we know it will be worth the wait! In the meantime we are going to work with our agency to develop our "fact sheet" which is a one-page biography they show to expectant parents who seek their services. Kind of nuts we have to summarize our entire life into one sheet!
Of course, if you know anything about Lindsey, you can pretty much imagine our nursery is nearly complete. We painted the room and purchased furniture and some decorations. We are absolutely in love with our crib. We want to paint a design on the feature wall - once that's finished, we will be sure to post pictures!! But guys - it's so cute!!
We are currently making lists of everything we will need once Baby Mondine arrives. For those of you who have little ones in their lives in any capacity, we would love recommendations for products you have found to be life savers - let us know in the comments below!
We started a fundraiser on Bonfire selling t-shirts and it's been a huge success! To date, we have sold over 100 t-shirts! The outpouring of support has been nothing short of incredible. We are so, so grateful for our friends and family. We know Baby Mondine is going to be loved beyond measure. If anyone's interested, there's one week left to buy a t-shirt. You can do so here: https://www.bonfire.com/making-the-mondines-adoption-fundraiser/
Once the campaign is over and the shirts have been shipped, we want everyone to share pictures of their family wearing the shirt! They say it takes a village, and you all have proven to be the best village around! Now on to the... weird... stuff. Although we have only been on this journey for a month and a half, we have already learned so, so much. We went into the process with so much naivety. Shortly after we made our initial announcement about our intent to adopt, we were contacted by a lovely expectant parent who seemed like an incredible fit for us. We spoke with her for a few days, and she never gave us any indication that would cause us to be guarded. We understood the risk of financial scammers and knew to watch for the signs of someone asking for money, and this wasn't the case with this girl. Eventually our conversations got to be constant. It seemed as if she was texting us every minute of every day. If we ignored her texts for even five minutes, she would get angry with us. We were completely powerless and our lives were consumed by this girl. Eventually, we told her we had to set healthy boundaries and she said some pretty inexcusable things, thus ending our relationship with her. Here's where it gets interesting... This whole thing wasn't sitting well with us. So we decided to do some research and we learned of the world of emotional adoption scams. There is a small and well-known group of people who just want to emotionally toy with hopeful parents. They steal the identities of legitimate pregnant women and catfish adopting couples. They don't do it for financial gain; the only thing they get out of it is attention during the conversations. At some point, they end up stopping contact. These people are good - they have convinced many agencies and adopting parents have gone as far as showing up to hospitals across the country only to find out the person never existed. There is one person in particular who has been up to this for many years and runs hundreds of fake profiles. We won't be using this platform to give her any notoriety, because we know that's exactly why she does this. Let's just say, there's even a Dr. Phil episode about her. We have already spoken to her three times. Fortunately, we have joined a group on Facebook whose mission is to expose this person, so we know every time we speak to her to just end the conversation and block her profile. While the whole experience was wild, it really opened our eyes and made us realize we need to be patient and guarded. If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. We don't tell you all of this to get sympathy. We said from the beginning, we wanted to be as transparent with this process as possible, simply because most of our friends and family don't know all the adoption journey entails. Sometimes, that means negative things too, and that's okay, because it's all part of the process. We hope someone in the future can learn from the things we have gone through. We are in such a vulnerable position, asking someone to share the most incredible gift with us, and we know someday we will be blessed, but we have to trust the process. We have so many exciting things coming our way. We can't wait to continue sharing about our journey. In the meantime, we hope you're all staying safe! We are counting down the days to warmer weather...