This chapter concludes the process of signing the first round of paperwork to adopt Paige.
Anita smiles at us after we give back the paperwork.
“I have a few questions and then we’re all done. Feel free to answer no to any of them; they’re just standard procedure.” We nod our understanding. “If any of Paige’s siblings are removed from the home, do you want to be contacted for visits?”
As far as we know, Ruth and David had no other children. Sensing our confusion, Anita clarifies. “What I mean is if mom or dad have another child who gets removed, is it okay for the foster or adoptive family to contact you?”
“Yes,” we respond in union, without hesitation.
“If any of Paige’s siblings are removed from the home and become available for adoption, do you want to be offered the chance to adopt first?”
My first thought is Hell No! But then I have second thoughts. What if there is an older sibling floating around who we don’t know about? Or what if they have another child who doesn’t come into the system until an older age?
“No,” Andrew says promptly. I hesitate.
“I don’t know…”
Andrew’s eyes widen so much that I wonder if his eyeballs are going to fall out. “You can’t be serious?”
“You never know what sort of situation could come up. I’d like to keep the option open.”
Anita jumps in and clarifies. “In either case, your answers aren’t a commitment. They merely give the County permission to get in touch if the opportunity arises.”
I look at Andrew and he shrugs. “As long as there’s no commitment by saying ‘yes,’ then go ahead and list us. What harm can it do?”
We all know what “harm” it can do. But it’s best not to remind Andrew that this “harm” is the reason we’re sitting in Anita’s office in the first place.
“Congratulations on the newest member of your family!” Anita stands up and hugs us both.
Anita escorts us out of her office. “I’ll contact you with the final court date after I file the paperwork. I normally attend the signing but I’ll probably be on vacation.” I make a sad face. “But I’ll be in touch before then for a visit with Payton.”