Recently I was on a parenting web forum with an adoption section where one waiting mum asked ‘what to do while waiting?’

Well! That is the million dollar question isn’t it!

When we were at our official introduction seminar they suggested that every one waiting 1) gets a dog and 2) renovates their house.

Well we are no different in a lot of ways. Because we found our Indai at the pound and she came to live with us in Feb 09. And after living in our house for over 2 years now we are… renovating!

But we have done more then that too. Here is a list of the things we have already done and some we will intend to do more of – in no particular order.

  • Joined ASIAC – an adoptive families support network for my state. I reccomend it – so if there is a similar one for your situation or in your state then I think it is worth looking into. ASIAC can be found here 
  • Went to a Tibetan Buddhist centre for a Green Tara puja. You can read more about that here (removing obsticles)
  • Started reading: tonnes of reading! Read lots and lots of books and other resources about Adoptive Parenting, bonding, attachment, adult adoptive experiences and so forth – it has been invaluable
  • Joined other on-line communities that are more Thai adoption specific (more then ASIAC – which covers inter country adoptions). These groups are google groups, facebook etc. I have not been able to articulate what this means yet. But a friend from the US recently articulated that really really well (she is a much better writer then me) so I will link to her blog post here  (although her blog is on my blogroll – so you can read her insightful and witty posts anytime!)
  • But also began learning about parenting in general! There has also been reading of non-adoptive parenting books, learning from parenting forums about parenting in general, learning from friends etc who have become parents.
  • Became an Aunty and Uncle! This has been helpful so that we have more contact with babies/ toddlers. Helpful to observe how my sister in law handles things (she does a good job! – lots of good tips). It is also helpful for Indai to learn how to be nice to little people.
  • Started to create a welcoming environment for a child in our house. We have not got a nursery set up yet but the room we think will be the playroom is coming together – with children’s books, toys, some great art etc.
  • Renovate! We have just started – by doing some of the small stuff ourselves. The bigger stuff is going to be done by professionals. But we don’t want to be elbow deep in a renovation when we get the call – imagine trying to baby-proof a house where they are building walls!
  • Met other adoptive parents. I have met a few face-to-face as well as the on-line connections. I find both really helpful, sometimes encouraging – sometimes more like a reality check 😉 such as here
  • Connected as much as we can with our future child’s culture. This may mean learning  Thai language (!) or another language, learning cooking etc visiting the country whenever you can etc. But embracing the culture in your life and heart as it will become part of your life. Some posts on that here and here

Obviously this is not a checklist for anyone else. Just a list of the things we have done. And I do intend to blog in more detail on each of the points.

But essentially I think all of the above can be broken down into three things;

Prepare your mind for the arrival of your child

Prepare your heart for the arrival of your child.

Prepare your home for the arrival of your child.

People may choose to do all of the above but may do them in completely different ways to Husbot and I. For instance; preparing your home. Some people do not set up a nursery or any room in their house before they are allocated – some do.  It is pretty rare to have a clear picture of the age and gender of the child you will be allocated so some people prefer to wait until they are allocated before buying things. Others don’t set up a room because they don’t want a daily reminder of wait staring them in the face – an empty cot to some might symbolise hope – to others symbolises despair.

But this is just chronicling the things we have done, so far, while waiting to get ourselves prepared for our babies arrival.

And there is still so much more to do!

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