Adoption placement day is such a wonderful day for adoptive parents. It’s the day when our children get to come home and we officially become parents. However, it’s also one of the most nerve-wracking days because you won’t really know if you officially will be parents until all of the papers are signed. As an adoptive mom who has been there, done that, I recommend 5 things to bring with you to the adoption placement:
1. An infant car set carrier.
This is the only practical baby item on this list, and the reason it’s on the list is because you won’t be allowed to leave the hospital without it. Our car seat carrier was the only thing my husband and I purchased for our son before we knew with 100% certainty we’d be taking him home. Do your research and find a good car seat carrier that meets all of your needs and will be a safe place for your baby to travel back to his home.
2. Mindless games on your phone.
My husband and I arrived at the hospital about an hour before the lawyer and social worker were going to do the surrender with our son’s birth parents. We signed all of the papers we could sign before the official surrender/placement, and then we waited. And waited. And waited. We were told the surrender could take an hour and a half, and let me tell you, every second felt like an hour and a half. I couldn’t focus enough to watch TV or read a book. The only thing keeping my mind off of what was happening was candy crush. I’m almost embarrassed to admit how many games of candy crush I played while waiting to sign our placement papers, but it was honestly the only thing I could focus on—probably because it requires very little actual concentration and lots of repetition.
3. A rosary (or some other religious symbol).
When I wasn’t playing candy crush, I was praying. Praying for my anxiety, praying for my husband’s strength, praying for the baby who might eventually become our son, praying for our son’s birth parents for peace and comfort in whatever decision they would make, just praying. For me, there was comfort in praying the repetitive prayers of the rosary. Again, I think it goes back to the whole “I couldn’t focus on anything, so I found comfort in the repetition” mindset.
4. Your spouse (or someone to talk to).
It sounds silly because why wouldn’t your spouse be there? But if you’re a single adoptive parent or your spouse is deployed or can’t be there for whatever reason, bring a friend or family member you can talk to, or not talk to, depending on your mood. Even though my husband spent most of our waiting time watching TV or playing on his phone, just the fact that he was there made everything better. Knowing that I wasn’t alone and someone else right next to me was going through this same emotional roller coaster was comforting, even if we didn’t say a word to each other.
5. A positive attitude.
It’s easy to get bogged down in the “what ifs” of adoption, but remember: you were chosen by these birth parents to raise their child, you are being given the greatest gift, and you are ready. Think positively about all of the wonderful adventures you are about to have with your new child. Think positively about the entire experience, and remember, one day you’ll be telling your child exactly how you felt on this day you got to bring them home.
Adoption placement day is one of the greatest days of your life, but it’s always important to be prepared for any situation, especially when it may involve lots of waiting and anxiety.
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