Yesterday we said goodbye to our social worker. It was harder than I had anticipated.
I spent snippets of the afternoon getting teary eyed as I selected a few photos, chose a card, and thought about what we should write on the inside.
Losing our social worker, for me, has been akin to losing a family member. She's been such an active part of my daily life for the past year, such a fantastic support, and it's going to be hard not to pick up the phone on a whim to connect with her.
She's been my confidante and somehow made the whole process of adoption seem much less invasive than it actually was. This woman knows everything about Wifey and I. And, yes, I do mean everything from our familial histories and financial situation to our sex life and values. That's how thorough the volumes of paperwork that Children's Aid had us complete in order for us to be considered as adoptive parents.
We've just said good bye to the woman who helped us create our family, who picked us out of over 50 applicants to parent Bella and Bubaloo. I'm thankful for her and the role she's had in our lives.
Our social worker is leaving the Ottawa CAS to be closer to her daughter who has a high risk pregnancy, and to do so, needs to move to another city.
Her departure doesn't mark the end our connection to the rest of our social work team at CAS. We're a minimum of two months away from adoption finalization and more likely a year from having all of the necessary paperwork in hand. Once the adoption is finalized, we'll actually get to see and hold our children's birth certificates for the first time!
I never expected to have a relationship with our social worker. It's been organic. I've learned so much from her. She's learned so much from us. It really was a great pairing and I only wish other adoptive parents would be so lucky to have the experience we had.
That's not to say it was perfect. Because it was far from that. There were often too many players at the table. Significant negotiation, mediation and intervention was also often required.
Though, I think it says a lot at the end of the day where we're able to recognize CAS for all of its faults - and there are many in both the organization and the system - and that Wifey and I are still willing to stand behind and to support CAS and the work that it does.
I thank my social worker for our adoption experience. I thank my social worker for helping to make us a family. And, I thank my social worker for have a role and an impact on my life in so many other ways that I don't think I'll ever be able to articulate.