We've officially been on Stage One since early October and we have already completed much of what we're required to do at this time. So far, everything is going well. A lot of what is required during this initial stage is completed by our agency so at the moment it doesn't feel as though we are doing that much in the grand scheme of things. We know references have been requested and most have already come back which is great! Apparently one of our references was returned within a record amount of time - impressive!!
Sam had his medical several weeks ago - what fun that was! Over an hour spent with the Doctor going through his entire medical history since birth and a number of health checks to confirm the current health. The medical itself is the only cost you have to pay for throughout the entire adoption process. Costs can vary so check with your Doctor beforehand just in case. James has his coming up soon and once that's done - that's more or less most of the process driven requirements complete.
In the meantime we both have to complete a thorough and very detailed self-assessment booklet which we need to submit by early December. The self-assessment asks us to provide our comments about our life history, work experience, experience of working with children, relationships, family and support networks to name but a few topics. We've both been working hard on these and hope to return them before the Christmas period really starts. We are also required to document our learnings - any websites/book/podcasts/news articles etc that we read or listen to, we need to document as it forms part out the assessment.
Once we have returned our self assessments thats more or less us done for Stage One and then it's a waiting game to hear about moving on to Stage Two! EXCITING!! We recently received notification about our allocated Social Worker, so we're very happy we found out who will be taking us through the assessment and Family Finding at this early stage.
We'll keep you posted as things progress!