After a few minor corrections in syntax, it looks like our first major step will be finalized early next week – our finished home study. That will be shortly followed by our next major step – sending in the check for the home study. And, for now, that’s likely the most we will know.
As we have mentioned before, we are doing a form of what is termed in the adoption business (and it is definitely that) as an independent adoption (or private adoption). In other words, we have not contracted with one particular adoption agency. Instead, we did partner with one agency, Adoption Assistance, to help get the initial steps out of the way, including our home study. Once finalized, we are legal to be considered as an adoptive family. If we have not started the process on an adoption within a year, then it must be renewed, but the process won’t have to start all over at any point. The child that God has for us may indeed come through their agency, but it could also come through any agency from any part of the United States. Clear as mud?
Basically, now we have to finish up our family’s profile so that when we do choose to list ourselves with agencies, birth mothers who are considering putting their eventual newborn up for adoption (or have already chosen to) can look at our profile versus the thousands of others as they choose the right situation for their baby (and, if Mrs. Huey reads this, it only looks like a run-on sentence). In other words, Jaclyn’s marketing classes in college could really come in handy about right now. We have already been advised on how to best “sell ourselves” to make our little family more appealing to birth mothers.
I consider myself and Jaclyn to both be fairly intelligent individuals. Jaclyn has a degree in accounting (pre-requisite for all of the greatest children’s ministers), and I have two degrees, and will be finished with a third by the end of next summer. Neither of us have been asked to join Mensa just yet, but still should be able to carry on a normal conversation in most places. So, figuring this out should be a problem, right? Well, herein lies the problem in that. We aren’t marketing ourselves to peers. By and large, birth mothers today that are choosing adoption are 18 years old and under. So, we gain no advantage by writing the right words or expounding on the great reasons why we would be a great family for their baby. No offense to anyone , but today’s generation is not easily impressed by words, but rather by something visual that catches their eye. So, while one young lady may look at the pictures of our kids with the horses and quickly move on, the next one may stop looking there and call the agency. There is no “right way” or “wrong way” to present yourself (except dishonestly, I suppose). I guess one gamble would be to embed text language to try to connect. (lol, btw, imho, omg, u2, ?)
I think about the Andy Griffith episode where Floyd the barber panics because the female that he has been corresponding with via letters over time is coming to pay him a visit. Floyd has built a persona for himself as a wealthy entrepreneur and is worried that the wealthy widow on the other end will be disappointed. The ruse goes so far, that Andy poses as his eldest son, Opie as his youngest son, and Aunt Bee as Floyd’s maid. Even though he is an ordinary barber on the true inside, he polishes up his outside to look like something she would like much, much better. The lesson learned at the end is obvious, especially when we find out that his lady-friend is a phony, running a scam to bilk wealthy widowers out of their money.
Isn’t this what we do every day? We smile and exchange pleasantries to those we come in contact with, even when we are sad or otherwise upset on the inside. We are quick to point out to those around us when someone outside our circle doesn’t meet our social or cultural expectations, despite the fact that we all have flaws. Even our kids know that we will clean the house more vigorously than any other time when friends or family are coming over than what we might normally do, because we know their houses stay spotless all the time.
I am reminded of the story in John 4 about when Jesus talked to the woman at the well. This woman had to come get water in the middle of the day in the Middle East all alone. Talk about being ostracized – the other water-seeking ladies didn’t want her around and she knew it. Among whatever else she had done, we know that she had a long list of men in her past that at least contributed to her reputation in the community. But, Jesus didn’t care. Oh, he mentions it, but only so she knows that He knew who she was and that He was talking to her anyway. He looked past everything to see the real her and let her know that what He had to offer applied to her as much as it did to anyone else. My prayer for me is that I don’t let an opportunity to pass by making surface judgements of others based on where they fit into what I think is the right mold.
So, having said all of that, we are just going to put out there who we are. We will write about who Jaclyn and I are, about the personalities of Kara, Gabe, and JP, and about what life as a Scott is like. We don’t pretend to have mountains of money. We don’t pretend to be anything we are not. What is true is that we are two people who, in less than a year, have gone from blatantly disobedient and oppositional to God about even the concept of adoption, to a couple who cannot wait to welcome a new life into ours.
1 Corinthians 1:27 – “Instead, God has chosen what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen what is weak in the world to shame the strong.”