Step 1: APPROVED!!!

Well.. informally at least :-)

After 2 hugs on my way out of work and advice about not swearing! (I have a bit of a potty mouth when I get going) - Against my nature I turned up 15 minutes early. The offices are professional but not scary, and everyone smiled as they passed by me on the way in/out. No fancy reception or anything, which gave me comfort that they were about the business in hand.

I met the young woman (J) who interviewed me at the Information Evening and already thought she was lovely and she was. Just.. "normal". Like a normal person that has to ask me some questions and wants to help me.

I was there just under 2 hours in the end and she gave me a load of information about the process, the make-up of the team, about the kinds of children they place, etc. In the main though, it was for her to ask me a load of questions. I've listed them seperately (here) to give others an idea in preparation for your own interviews :-)

I asked at the beginning if she would tell me straight away the outcome of the interview and she confirmed that the Practice Director had the final say after reading her (J's) report and that if there was anything that concerned her during the interview she'd tell me and give me advice on what to do before trying again.

I admit to making a tit of myself right at the beginning. I was so nervous and before I'd left one of my lovely pals told me not to swear lol (I have a bit of a potty mouth when I get going!) so I was watching what I said. I sat down and straight away had to apologise for stomach grumbling really loudly and then she asked me to tell her why I wanted to adopt and I burst into tears lol. Not proper ones, no snot, but I couldn't talk for a few mins whilst I sorted myself out! She was lovely though and although a few times the old voice wobbled, I was alright after that :-)

So.. biggest worries on her side? None. She said "your background is quite complicated" lol which I laughed at and the only thing she said was that on the one hand it shows that I can go through "stuff" and come through it and also that I have experiences that will help me with a child that has been through stuff too. But she said that on the other hand, the social worker would obviously want to make sure I was ready and had dealt with everything, etc.

And biggest on mine? They want to contact BOTH my ex-husbands for a reference!! So.. that'll be interesting. She said that if they couldn't find my first hubby it didn't matter. It was only a basic reference but as we lived together, it's really to confirm that I wouldn't ever hurt a child. Which is fine but.. well.. the partings weren't exactly amicable.. I'm not too worried about the first. I only have our old address and I doubt he's still there 10 years on but I don't know what to expect from my latest. He's a good guy and I know he will know how much I want this, but he was hurt when we split and pain can make us do a lot of things. I might ask one of my friends to talk to him first. Or should I.. we haven't spoken since it happened!

Anyway.. the best news of all is towards the end, J confirmed that she would be recommending me that they take me on!!

I know it's only the very first in a long line of steps but she said that though of course they don't know what will come out of the home visits and interviews, etc. they really wouldn't take me on if they didn't think they would be able to work with me. And they won't put me forward to panel if they don't think I'm ready, but will work with me till I am. It's.. it's.. so wonderful to hear from someone in authority that you're not crazy. Or too young, or whatever.

So now.. she'll write up her report and the Practice Director should read it Monday and get back to me with my confirmation in the next 2 weeks. They'll send through the application form and as soon as they get it back, I'm on the clock and they look to get me to panel in 6 months.

I am so excited. I am so so so excited. And overwhelmed. And emotional as hell lol. But.. OMG!!!!! This Christmas.. could be the most amazing ever.

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