….just became my favourite date.
We used public transport to get to Reading, pre-empting celebratory or commiseration drinks. We’d already discussed questions we expected the Panel to ask and used this time to run through suitable responses.
We arrived with enough time for me to buy a pastry and spill a coffee. It would appear that nerves exacerbate my inherent clumsiness! The morning was overcast, but humid, so we arrived at PACT’s offices suitably sweaty and anxious, N arrived a few minutes later and ran through the structure of the meeting. After 20 minutes of awkward chit-chat, the chair and vice chair came in to introduce themselves and let us know the questions we would be asked:
- What have learnt throughout the process thus far?
- You have been together for a comparatively short time (5 years), how will you safeguard your relationship?
- Why a sibling group OR foster to adopt? What makes you think you could support three children?
- How would you support the children if faced with discrimination (in a same sex relationship)
- What are you most looking forward to about parenthood
- Pretend I’m a child and I’m crying, how do you comfort me?
We were given 30 seconds to process and ushered through to the meeting room. Blimey it was intense: a huge table with 12 pairs of eyes all focused on us. I’m used to talking to groups, chairing meetings and giving presentations, but when faced with a dozen strangers holding the future of our family in their hands, I turned into a blabbering idiot.
Thirty minutes passed in a blur, we were thanked and taken back to the holding cell. I immediately burst into tears (standard Anna behaviour- I’m an emotional being) feeling like I’d let the team down, Cara (who was bloody fantastic) reassured me and N recounted a time when the couple were so anxious they couldn’t speak! Just a couple of minutes later the chair came to retrieve us. I was shaking so hard, Cara had to grab my hand lead me, we returned to the giant table and took a seat. The chair announced that they had unanimously voted to approve us. There were more tears.
So what better way to follow up being approved as adopters? well ask Cara if she wants to get hitched of course – in for a penny in for a pound 😉
She said yes.
Cue lots of drinks, food, champagne and two very happy girls.
The tenth of July will always be a date that changed our lives and will be forever special to our family. Thank you to Cara for being my everything and our friends and family for for being so supportive*
*a special thanks to Ellie for the #biscuitgate balloons. What a legend.
I’m a very lucky person,