The Blue Notebook and Big Emotions


Hand-stitched dad and I have a lot of big emotions around adopting.

  • Excitement for working even more closely together as parents.
  • Anticipation over who might join our family.
  • Frustration that so much is in the hands of other people.
  • Fear that we might be deemed ‘not good enough’ to be adoptive parents.
  • Anger at people for withholding or limiting support for adopted children.
  • Empathy for birth parents who struggle with the chaos of their lives.
  • Sadness over our shared losses: the children, their birth parents and us.
  • Admiration for the remarkable people who find security despite traumatic experiences.
  • Hope that we can be a family that belongs somewhere, together.

Amidst all these emotions (and more) are important details and decisions. So, I started a Blue Notebook as a communication record, filled with dates, names, phone numbers, and notes of conversations and meetings related to the adoption process.

As I told the social workers: unlike many people beginning this journey, we are not in a hurry. Adoption thrives on preparation. After spending the last few years in books, blogs and forums, we are starting to branch out into telephone calls, meetings, and visits. Once we apply to an agency, we will join a preparation group and meet other prospective adopters. We will have home study visits with a social worker (or two), who simultaneously educates and evaluates us. Then, when we all agree we are ready, we go to panel to be approved (or rejected) as adoptive parents.

I genuinely hope this takes time. I want time to build my confidence as a therapeutic parent. I want time to make decisions about what sort of children hand-stitched dad and I are best suited for. I want time to build new relationships with experienced adopters, with our chosen agency, and with other new families. We need time to manage all of the big emotions that are stirred up in this process.

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6 thoughts on “The Blue Notebook and Big Emotions

  1. glad to have found you – it really is a process – I too have a notebook, wherer I have written everything along the way – it is a useful resource at times: journal, diary, notes, names, numbers, questions, meeting minutes, notes, scribbles, answers. I will keep it once it is full. A memory. Enjoy the whole process as you discover more about yourselves and the system and what might lie ahead. Preparation really does help.

  2. Hi there and welcome to WASO, thank you so much for linking up to the Weekly Adoption Shout Out.
    I wish you all the best, and I hope you find the process to be reflective, supportive and informative as you stitch together not only your family, but the next bit of your lives…
    I very much look forward to reading more 🙂

  3. Hi there sorry to get to your blog so later but so pleased you’ve joined in. Good idea to have a notebook and make notes when you think of things. I used to have mine by the bed so at night if things were jumping around inside my head I could get them down and hopefully sleep. Look forward to following your journey and thanks for linking up with the Weekly Adoption Shout Out.

  4. I don’t use the Blue Notebook for anything but names, numbers, and notes of conversations. I like your suggestion though! I will have a think about different ways to use it.

  5. Keep records, keep it all. Your kid/s will love it when they are older and want to ‘unpick’ everything and understand their journey. Mx

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