Sunday, 22 September 2013

What a difference a couple of weeks back at school makes!

My last blog update felt quite negative, we had a fairly trying couple of weeks and I think that we were both really exhausted by it. The next couple of weeks however, couldn't have felt more different. Almost instantly when the boys when back to school, things lifted. The boys clearly thrive on routine, and as soon as we were all back in to the normal swing of things, everything seemed to settle again.

Joe has gone in to year three and Charlie in to year one, and we've made quite a fuss of the fact that they are getting older. Having always treated the boys very much the same, we've now told Joe that as a Junior, he can now stay up later for a bit of 'adult time.' That small change has really changed the dynamics of the evening routine, for the better. After bath time, Joe now comes downstairs for half an hour. That means that we read to Charlie on his own, he loves that 121 time and it's meant we've introduced him reading to us as well as us reading to him. Meanwhile, Joe loves the grown up time he gets without his brother, and sits and watches a bit of grown up time with me or G. It's made bedtime a lot calmer and more enjoyable for all four of us.

We've made more effort to have family play time, and the boys love the times we all sit around the table playing cards together. I try to lessen my naturally competitive nature, not always successfully!

We had a contact session with the boy's older sisters last weekend. We met up with them at a soft play centre and had a lovely few hours. The four children play so well together and we love catching up with their respective foster carers. The good news is both girl's foster carers have applied to permanently foster them, meaning they will have a home until they are 18, and we are absolutely delighted about that. The girls are lovely and clearly adore their younger brothers. Knowing they are settled is a great weight off our minds, I am sure time will come when the boys will want to know why we didn't adopt the girls too, at least knowing that they are in a loving home will be easier to explain to the boys why they couldn't all stay together.  It was interesting this time hearing their change in language, there was a time where they didn't want to accept us as the boys parents, but separately they both referred to 'your son' when talking to us about Charlie. We always feel a bit apprehensive about how contact sessions will run, but the boys always seem to take this in their stride.

The boys have settled in to their new classes with ease too, all the things they tell us will be flash points for adopted children, but the boys just seem to lap it all up. For Joe in particular there's been a big change in his confidence with reading and writing. It looks like he'll soon be caught up with his year group. He's back at football and also starting Rugby. Charlie is getting additional support and this is helping him to focus. He's also started to read some simple words and we're working on this. G in particular has so much patience with teaching the children. I've got more involved with the PTA, I feel that we've had so much from the school we owe it to them to give back in a small way.

Last week we had a couple come to visit, who are contemplating adopting a sibling group. Social services had asked if we would meet with them. It's an odd thing really, inviting complete strangers in to your home and then talking about the most personal of subjects. But we love it! It's a funny thing with adoption, but meeting other people in your own shoes is very quickly bonding, and it's always lovely to be able to talk to people that really understand the special gift and process that adoption is. Tomorrow I'm off to speak at an adoption prep course, about our experiences as adopters, and again, I'm so excited about doing so - I feel like a real advocate for adoption and I love talking to people at the start of their own journeys.

So, apologies for the moaning of the last update, but pleased to report that things feel like they are back on track!


  1. Thank you for your entertaining, heart wrenching and truly honest blog. My husband and I are adopting and await our panel date. It is nerve wracking to go through but reading your blog made me laugh, cry, and all sorts. I had so many pictures of you guys running through my head! Thank you for a truly inspiring blog :) x

  2. Thank you for your kind words Erin, and I am pleased to hear that the blog has helped you in a small way. Good luck to you and your husband. I know it's easy for me to say now, but panel isn't as bad as you imagine it will be, just relax and go with it. I hope you soon find your family. x

  3. Thank you for your honest and open blog. My husband and I are currently waiting to be signed a social worker and the idea of what to come was terrifying. You have really helped us to envisage and prepare for what is to come. Thanks to you we are now open to consider a sibling group, something which had never come up in it discussions before.

    I wish you G and the boys all the love and happiness in the world. I think you've all found the people you were meant to spend your lives with!

    1. Thanks for your message Mrs D. It has made me feel all warm inside ;-) Good luck with your own journey. My best advice it to be as open and honest and relaxed as you can be, and accept that the process is what it is, you won't change it, so best to smile take a deep breath!!