So as of April 18th, we had done everything we needed to do.
We had heard rumors about DSS sending out letters to potential adoptive parents about them suspending the adoption program for 6 months! We never got a letter, so I called. I was told that if I was supposed to get the letter, I would have received it. Since we didn't get one, I took that as a good sign!
The DSS office was having some major employee turnover problems, and we were without a case worker for several months!
And for 4 months we didn't hear anything!
Finally in October we got an email from our new case worker! We had been assigned to a certified investigator (CI)! That meant we would finally be starting our homestudy!! We also scheduled our fire inspection and a Inspection with DHEC had been requested!
November 12 we got a phone call from our CI to set up a homestudy visit. She would need to do two visits total. We scheduled the first one for November 20th.
November 17 we had our Fire inspection and we PASSED!! One step closer!
On November 20 we had our first homestudy visit with the CI. She interviewed both Andrew and I together, and then separately. She also took a short tour of the house. We also scheduled her next visit.
On November 30 we had our second homestudy visit. She only interviewed us together this time. Now we just had to wait for her to write up her report and get it to DSS.
Plus, We were still waiting for DHEC to schedule their inspection.
By now, we have been in the adoption process for a year!
On December 11 we got an email from the CI saying that she was finished with our homestudy and sending it in to DSS!
By this time, I was getting very frustrated with DHEC so I called our case worker to find out what the hold up was! She said that they are behind, and it had to be scheduled within 90 days of the request, which meant it had to be done by January 28th. Well, I didn't like that answer and called DHEC myself. I spoke with a very nice lady and she said she would write an email to the person who does the inspections to see what they can do. So we waited...
On January 4, 2016 we finally got a phone call from DHEC to schedule our inspection! It was scheduled for January 20.
So on January 20, DHEC shows up for their inspection and of course, we passed!
Now all we were waiting for was DSS to finish going over our homestudy and approving it.
On January 20 I also got an email from a new case worker, yes we got another one! She informed me that we needed to update some of our paperwork, and sign some new papers, since a bunch of ours would be expiring the next week! So we took care of all of that over the next few days.
On January 25 we got a copy of our homestudy to review. DSS had finished reviewing it, so it just needed our approval. We made a few changes, and clarified a few things for DSS, and sent it back.
February 2, 2016 we got an email stating that we had FINALLY been approved to adopt!! All we had to do now was go sign the papers!
On February 4, 2016 we went to the DSS office to review and sign official homestudy. We are officially approved to adopt!!
So then the real wait started!! We were waiting for the phone call saying that we had be chosen!!
DSS was sure to tell us that we wouldn't hear from them unless we had been chosen. So just because we weren't getting any updates, didn't mean things were not going on behind the scenes! And that was so hard! Just waiting and never hearing anything.
Up next, the phone call we had been waiting for...