Friday, March 18, 2011

Legislation Confusion

So one of many things I do to fill my time waiting is bugging my representative in DC. I've written Peter Welch again tonight. I wrote to him last summer only to receive very inaccurate information (his office informed me the only tax credits were for families adopting children over 12 or children with disabilities). I wrote back in October to inform his office that there was a tax refund that expired December 2011 but wanted to know if it had been extended. His office claimed to have attempted to contact me despite me calling weekly for 3 months. I finally spoke with someone in February. I cried on the phone (UGH!!) when I explained to his staffer that the legislation is just not fair.

1) Families adopting domestically and internationally get the same tax break. My problem with this is families that are adopting abroad are typically are spending more money to adopt children in countries other then our own. Women that place their child for adoption in the united states are doing so for many reasons but it always boils down to they are not in a place to raise a child. By creating an adoption plan she gives her child an opportunity to be raised by a family that is ready. If she raised the child despite feeling unprepared likely she would have required additional support from society to do so. By my raising the child everyone involved benefits (the woman, the child, my family, as well as society).

2) There is no legislation in that requires employers to give the same paid leave to their employees that adopt as those who give birth. Many employers provide paid leave through short term disability. As I will never become "disabled" when I have my child through adoption I do not get paid time off. I will take my time and it will be unpaid but I am fortunate that DH and I are on the same page in feeling that although it will be tough financially its important. I will not have had the benefit of bonding with my baby while he/she was in the womb so our first months together will be that much more important.

So after all of that... I learned tonight that it looks like the tax benefit was extended and signed into law by Obama in December of 2010 and will now expire in December 2012. I am not sure that it will be at the same level as the one that expires December 2011. So I had to write him again. I'm frustrated because at the point in which I spoke to his office in February the extension would already have been signed into law. Adoption benefits I think are lacking in our country. Canada it costs 10-15,000. In the UK its FREE. Based on my Blog statistics I know there are others from Europe that are reading the blog. How much is a domestic adoption for you? The United states the range is $5000 (the child likely has disabilities or expected disabilities) up to $40000+.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"If only you knew what it took to adopt a baby"

"If only you knew what it took to adopt a baby" is a direct quote from a woman I had just met. A beautiful family photo was on her dresser and I commented about how gorgeous her grandson was. She shared with me her dtr-in-law had several miscarages and was unable to have a baby. They "were unable to get a baby here (the united states) that was not drug addicted" (this is a common misconception and I highly doubt the truth for them unless they were hoping for a quick adoption) and had adopted a baby from over seas.

I had two reactions to her story:
1) How proud she was of her Grandson as well has her son/dtr-in-law. She also was able to identify how challenging the process was. It was nice to be able to tell her that I DID know what they had to go through and that many parents could not complete the process successfully. Then my pessimistic side took over...

2) Does her dtr-in-law know she shares her infertility history. I hope my mother-in-law does not explain our infertility challenges when she comments on a photo of her grandchild is what I was hoping. Maybe we should let our families know that its not for public sharing (though I think my family realizes this). I think she was trying to explain why her grandson was a different ethnicity then his parents but still... as far as I was concerned until she told me about the miscarriages they had chosen to adopt for reasons not identified.

Friday, March 11, 2011


I had a dream the other night that someone had a baby. I was smelling, snuggling and talking to the baby. Then the person who's baby it was told me "you can't have him." I responded by saying I didn't want the baby. It was if this mother felt like just because we are waiting to adopt I was eyeing every baby for the possibility of keeping them. Strange.

I did talk to my supervisor about adoption benefits. I felt a little strange talking about it. The company I work for is large and as an employee I'm very distant from corporate as well as HR. I couldn't find my packet of information I got from the Dave Thomas foundation so she ordered more information to be sent directly to her. I know that the benefit would not help me because if it ever happened it would hopefully not be before we had our baby (as I hope the process is quick not because I dont want the benefit). I told her that it would be a nice offering and it would make me happy even to know someone else benefitted. I think my company actually implementing the benefit is a bit of a dream... but we were on the topic of dreams.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Things never to do with baby

1. bathroom renovation
We have one bathroom which had serious mold problems. We knew when we moved it that it was going to have to be renovated. Since we only have one bathroom we decided to hire a contractor as we didn't want to be bathroomless for months. We demoed the bathroom ourselves and in the process the pipes in the basement started to leak. So what was supposed to be only a 24 hours of lack of toilet when the tile guy came during week two turned out to be 3 days of no toilet. Dust and chemicals from the project has me sick. We used the showers at DH's work and my aunts house but roughed it for the toilet. I cannot immagine doing this with a baby, toddler, or any child for that matter.

2. Car accident
So I've been in 7 car accidents. I was only at fault in 1. This last car accident I was in was a bit of a wake up call. What if I had a baby in my back seat?! So call me a planner but I purchased my Mazda during my senior year of college with safety for a car seat/baby when I bought it. I figured I was 22 and in 10 years I'd have a baby or two. My Mazda never got to transport my kiddo's but it did provide me with endless safety. In picking out a new car again I looked at child safety as well as thought about cargo space to truck all their stuff. I know this car will be the one to transport my babies. So I bought a Honda Fit.... 13 hours later the car's check engine light came on... 30 hours after that the dealer offered me a new car (because I sent a letter explaining how I wanted to feel safe in the car). I didn't share this but I also wanted to make sure that my babies will be safe in my car to. Though hopefully this will be my very last accident I know that we will all be safe in my new car.