So. Two weeks ago we went to the profile evening, not really knowing what to expect. Turned out our social worker had been approached by the social worker for a sibling group of three, so within minutes of walking through the door, their profile was thrust into our hands and we were asked to watch a DVD. They sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star perfectly nicely but we have always said we are looking for two siblings, not three, so despite being pounced on by their social worker, we said no. (She was clearly desperate to place them, but even so, being in our faces like that didn’t do her or them any favours.)
However. Among the 20 or so children whose profiles were on display, there was one pair of siblings – a nearly-three-year-old girl and a 16-month-old boy. Gorgeous. Giggly. Sounded like a great match for us. We enquired. Watched a video of her reading, him playing with cars, and them both running round the sofa. Told our social worker we were interested. Came home. Emailed their social worker. Got excited. Waited.
After a few days I had a reply – she couldn’t do anything until we’re approved (now 3 weeks away, in theory). And today our social worker came to go through our PAR with us and said actually they’re approaching two other (approved) families about those children and will only come to us if they both say no. So what was the point of us going to the profile evening and getting all excited? We now feel all deflated – not just about those children, but about the whole system and how we’ve been messed about. Our PAR was full of factual errors as well as spelling, punctuation and grammatical mistakes. We’ve been running around collecting information to help our social worker complete her forms when she phones out of the blue and needs things like the number from our marriage certificate. We’ve been spending every spare moment decorating the children’s bedrooms so they’re ready to photograph for our portfolio. And yet she still can’t get our dates of birth right, nor can she tell us for certain when we’re going to panel, because some member of her admin team hasn’t chased up the local authority searches, and currently only one has been returned. Aaaargh. The whole ‘pregnant without a due date’ analogy seems very fitting, particularly as one of my best friends is about to give birth while we still wonder who and when and what if after 18 months in the process.
So today it is taking all the self-control I can muster not to raid the kitchen for chocolate, crisps, and all things unhealthy. (I’m on the Tesco GI Diet, and it’s working, but it’s hard work.) Feeling deflated and fed up. Pass the Ryvita, someone?