As I've posted before, the wait to adopt a child from China is long and growing longer. I've been following various China adoption blogs, and I've come to fear that Kevin and I are in a very precarious position. I estimate our current wait to be about another 4 years. Yup, you read me correctly. I'd like to have a child before I'm 50, and we're concerned that by the time we're given a referral, CCAA will deny us, due to our ages and the added issue of Kevin's MS diagnosis. We could very possibly hang in for the next 4 years and then be denied at the point our dossier finally makes it to the matching room.
So here's the new plan. We've decided to switch to China's Special Needs program. China designates adoptees who have one or more medical conditions as well as children over the age of six as special needs. Many of these medical issues have already been treated or surgically corrected. By switching, we can very likely reduce our wait time, and possibly have a referral come to us at any time. We've submitted a list to our adoption agency of medical conditions that we feel we'd be able to handle, and that generally have a good prognosis. So, I'm figuring out how the process works as we go. From what I've learned so far, CCAA sends a monthly shared list of waiting children to all adoption agencies participating in the special needs program. When the list goes out, there's a kind of scramble among the agencies to match children to their prospective parents. When they find a match, they have to lock in that child so no other agency has access. They can hold that child for 48 hours to give the prospective family time to decide if they want to move forward with the referral. After 48 hours a child's file can be locked for 48 hours two more times to give more time to review medical records and make a decision. This month's list apparently came out last night. I've had my phone in my pocket all day, hoping it would ring. It's now 9:30pm and no call. Most likely our social worker was unable to find us a match today. So..., this is the drill that we will go through each month until our agency finds us our match!
Here's a few other details. We are now connected with the Yale International Adoption Clinic. We met with a doctor who helped us make our decision about what special needs we can comfortably handle. When we get a potential referral, we'll take the records there to be reviewed. If we accept, we then have to send CCAA a Letter of Intent, and then we wait for a Letter of Approval. If we're going to be denied, this is when I think it will happen. If we're approved, the current time frame for how long it will be before I go to China, is about 4 months.
The following is a list of the special needs we've said we can accept:
Atrial Septal Defect (ASD)
Ventricular Septal Defects (VSD)
Strabismus (Crossed Eyes)
Ptosis (Droopy Eyelids)