On Tuesday this week, our long wait will hopefully come to an end and OB will officially become the son he has been to me for so long.
I'm worried that it will be something of an anti-climax!
Somewhere in the city, a judge and some other officials that I have never met will sit together in a room that I have never seen, and go through a procedure only imperfectly understood my me. Shortly after, I'm hoping to hear that it's all done, although I don't know whether I'll get a letter or a phone call or what . . . or whether it will take an hour, a day or a week for the news to filter through!
This is why I am so glad that there will be another 'fake' hearing, or celebration hearing in a few weeks. When I have mentioned this to some people, there have been raised eyebrows and quizzical looks as if to say, 'why bother?'. But to me, this day will be very important.
Parents expect to be present for the birth of their child. Adoptive parents don't get that. Our 'adoption day' has to stand in for our 'birth day', and if adoption day passes by in a strange, distant place, and is marked only by a phone call, or a letter that arrives several days later to tell you that you have a child, it seems, well, not that much of a special day really!
So, the celebration hearing aims to bring a sense of occasion to something that really should be an occasion! All my family will be there, as well as OB, and we'll celebrate together. We'll have some sort of meal afterwards, and maybe a party for my wider circle of friends. There will be talking and laughter and photographs and memories.
In the meantime, there's the issue of what to do with 'final hearing day'. I made the mistake of underestimating the impact that 'adoption panel day' would have on me. The outcome seemed so certain that there was really no tension or uncertainty, and so I made no plans to celebrate or mark the occasion, mistakenly assuming that it wouldn't have much impact on me. Of course, I regretted this afterwards as it turned out that the experience was far more thrilling and emotional than I had expected. Over a week after the event, I finally managed a celebratory breakfast with a friend!
So I'm glad that our final hearing date on Tuesday happens to coincide with a week-long visit from my parents. They will be here with me and we'll be able to celebrate the occasion together. As a single adopter, finding someone to share your joyful moments is important, and who better to share this one than possibly the most doting grandparents in the world!
Roll on Tuesday!!