It was a yes. 8 people sat around a large table in what must have been the hottest room in England at that time and debated for 3 minutes. And then they said.. yes.

That's when I cried. Actually not quite then. It was when we got the feedback, but I'll come back to that.

The time of our "hearing" haha was 1.30pm and it was roughly 2 hrs away. So obviously we set off at 9.30am! You know.. just in case. As you would expect we were ridiculously early. We parked up and walked into town to have brunch and my goodness did we make that pizza last!

We went to the office and met with our Social Worker. She told us what would happen and we made terrible small talk, in a pretty typical "social services" room, whilst the nerves set in. We met her at 12.30 and she told us she'd be called in at 1pm to answer a few questions.

20 mins late the lovely Chair came out and said that they were sorry for keeping us but some information was missing! Our SW went out and we were left to royally panic for another 30 mins.

All the time I had thoughts of our lovely SW getting all the panel members in a headlock until they agreed to approve us! In my mind, the longer they took, the more they must have been arguing over whether or not we were fit for purpose.

The next thing we know, the Chair came out and then the SW ran past the door! PANIC! The Chair confirmed my worst fears.. no way are we getting approved.
Just kidding :) Apparently they couldn't find references from the places we have been volunteering with children and through our SW has said they were great, they were sticklers and wanted to see them for themselves.

They finally called us in. Wooooweee was that a scary moment! Opening the door into a room with a massive table surrounded by 8 scary faces. They had to shut the window because of the traffic and as a result, as the afternoon wore on it get hotter and hotter..

The 3 of us were sat close together at one end whilst they proceeded to bombard us with questions. They had worked them all out in advance and wanted to ask them in a specific way (though they changed that as we gave some of our answers). They wanted to know first how we found the process, which was the easy one.

And then it started.. they wanted to know first of all about our housing. We rent and they wanted to know if the landlord would be happy for us to stay there longer. They asked us why we wanted to adopt.. If you've read the blog, you'll know that one's a big one! But we managed to get through and I had to stifle a sob towards the end haha.

They asked my husband about his sister and his relationship with her. He got quite a bit of stick actually bless him, but I think he answered the only way he could. There was an adopter and someone who had been adopted and I can't remember which it was, but they really battered him over the head about it. They seemed to be digging for him to say that he felt differently, or that he noticed things about her, or something related to the fact that she's adopted. But a) he's a bloke... he doesn't say much generally and b) he has known her since she was 8 months and he was 7. She is his sister. The End. Yes he is aware that she is adopted but he doesn't analyse everything she says or does in case it's adoption related. He doesn't think about it. He feels no different. He could tell they wanted more but genuinely didn't know how to answer. Our SW was amazing and stepped in and said, the fact that he feels no difference is why he's struggling to give them what they wanted. I think at one point, he said he didn't care that she was adopted. They were very upset about that! He may not care, but his sister would care. Of course that's not at all what he meant, but they took from it that he was a bit naive about identity.

More questions... and then it was over. Think we were about half an hour. It FELT like the whole day. Then we went and waited back in the little room.. we waited. And in under 5 minutes the Chair came out. Thank Gods, before she was all the way in the door she gave us the news. Unanimous yes...

The shock! We hoped.. well I hoped. My husband being that kind of guy "knew it" apparently but he certainly looked nervous before we went in! The lovely Chair said that before we went in that had some concerns. Young, newish relationship that hasn't had to face adversity (though we have individually, just not together), the fact that we have chosen and aren't coming to it after years of fertility treatment... but after meeting us they were very happy. The feedback was actually quite wonderful. She said some lovely things about us which I can't repeat here. I would sound like one of those trumpet blowers and I'd make myself cry lol. But cry I did.. when she told us that they thought a child would be lucky to be placed with us, I'd held it off for long enough. Sobbed lol. Proper hands in face job.. how embarrassing! :)

We drove home in near silence.. after 9 months of assessment.. we did it.

We bloody did it!

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