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So many lawyers, so little time...

"The prospect of hanging focuses the mind wonderfully"--Samuel Johnson

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Location: Louisville, KY, United States

Gastroenterologist, cyclist, cellist, Christian, husband, father, grandfather.

Monday, February 05, 2007

On the cutting edge

We passed one of the major hurdles in the international adoption process last Thursday: the home study visit. Keeping details to a minimum for now (office starts in 5 minutes), the home study people, who have gotten to know you extremely well from all the paperwork and interviews that they have done up to that point, spends a minimum of three hours in your home. Their mission is to make sure that you are a suitable family, that you have the means and resources to take care of a new child, and that you're not a pedophile or some other low life. We think it's a very good program. We also think that if we had to provide the documentation for one of your "natural" children, the human race would die off after two generations.

There are some "hot buttons" in the home study process. One of the biggest is the question of firearm ownership. The home study agency doesn't want little kids getting into the family armory and raising havoc with themselves and others. Ideally, you should not own a gun, but if you do, it should be kept under lock and key, preferably in a safe, preferably at the gun club. We were questioned about it several times, and, no, we don't own guns. I get nervous with my son's paintball gun in the garage.

We take the home studier around our house. We show her my son's house, which is astonishingly clean. She nods in approval as she leaves the room. My son is turning very pale.

He had layed out, very neatly, on his dresser, his knife collection, some ten or twelve knives, ranging anywhere from a scrimshaw pocket knife to this huge machete that his brother-in-law had brought back from Guatemala. There was enough cutlery to slice and dice everyone in the neighborhood without having to use the same knife twice.

Only guns kill people, I guess. It certainly didn't bother the home study people.

Our paperwork now goes to the CIS/INS. We hope to hear from them in six weeks.


Blogger The Medicine Man said...

Congratulations on your progress! Not only have I been there myself (we adopted a baby girl from China three years ago) but gluttons for punishment that we are, we're going through the process again.

By now I'm sure you've developed something of a support network (whose main purpose, I'm convinced, is to spur each other to ever higher levels of anxiety) but in case you haven't, feel free to email me and we can exchange phone numbers. My email address is on my website.

Good luck!


9:20 PM  
Blogger Alec said...

I highly recommend Dan Savage's "The Kid," a book about a gay couple going through the adoption process. From reading your blog (which is fantastic, by the way), it sounds like Savage is your kind of humorist, although gay and not a physician.

5:05 PM  

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