We had our fourth and final home study visit today, this time at our house. Our caseworker was here and gone in about an hour.
Today consisted of a home tour, so I've spent days cleaning and trying to make the place look presentable so she wouldn't think we'd be questionable parents. There was still some dirt. I kind of feel like our master bedroom looks like a bachelor pad. My bed still doesn't have a quilt or bedspread on it and probably never will. And our guest bedroom -- which I had to show her -- was still a hot mess from moving. If you recall, we moved last September. It's June. Let's be honest; that room is probably only going to look presentable when we have a second child. But, we live here and honestly, a little dirt and mess isn't so unreasonable that it should keep us from being parents.
Aside from the home tour, we discussed some other minor things for our home study. Most of our discussion was centered around next steps, travel, and post-placement.
From this point, we have a big packet of information to submit to our caseworker. This includes documents I've worked on off and on for a few months now: doctor's visits, background checks, employer and friend references, marriage license, budget, etc. Our caseworker will compile that paperwork, plus her notes from our four visits, into the official home study document. She writes it, her supervisor reviews it, the agency's China caseworker reviews it, we review it, and then it's finalized. All said and done, we're probably looking at 6-8 weeks from this point to complete the home study.
In the meantime, there will be more paperwork to complete. We will also need to start doing our research on medical care, matching the special needs we said we were open to with doctors in the area that specialize in that field. We'll also need to decide on an international adoption doctor and we need to find a new primary care physician for ourselves too.
Once the home study is done, then we will start on even more paperwork for our dossier. A completed home study will also open the doors for us to apply for grants.
All that to say that from this point, we're still probably 12-18 months away from bringing our child home. May was a nice break from most things adoption, but I am glad that the ball is finally rolling again.