Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Training - check!

We finished our Bethany training last night. It was the last of 8 sessions, and for this one we had to appear in person. There were three other couples with us, adopting from Ukraine, the Philippines and Russia. Two of them already had referrals.

We talked a lot about adjusting at home, dealing with grief, and the basics of creating a Lifebook. This is a scrapbook you compile throughout the adoption process that tells the child's story. It may include information about his caretakers and orphanage, photos and history of the country, mementos, even details about his circumstances presented in a positive way. I'll write more about it when I've had a chance to read up on it. I think it will be a good project to start once our dossier is on its merry way.

I have to say the training has been really good, but after 20+ hours, I'm ready for a break or just a sappy romance novel.

A word about I-171H's: You don't have to go far to get bad news, like our trainer who said her last one took 5 months and they had to get their congressman involved. She had some criticisms of USCIS too, but it appears things have improved since her last adoption. I'm feeling pretty positive we'll have our approval within the 8 weeks that they estimate.


Demarie said...

The training sounds like it was very informative, but 20 hours is definitely a lot! :-) I'm confident you will receive your I-171H within the eight weeks; hopefully, well within that time frame!

Craig & Cindy said...

I could tell you a few things about USCIS, but I won't... virtually all of it is unrelated to adoption though. :)

I hadn't heard of doing a Lifebook before, but that sounds fantastic.

Craig and I are going to start on the Hague training soon.

I'll keep my fingers crossed for your I-171H. :)


Lori said...

I am glad that you are done with your training, you deserve a sappy novel now! Hopefully your I-171H will come quickly and painlessly. That will be my prayer for you!

Cris said...

Very glad you finished training - I'm sure that's a big relief! Hope your I-171H comes soon.

Holly said...

I truly hope you do not have to wait as long as we are waiting for the I-171H; I started to get really impatient around 5 weeks after fingerprinting.... now at 9 weeks since fingerprinting and 3 months since original I600A application, I've given up on seeing it any time soon. Hopefully I'll be pleasantly surprised next week or even this week yet. Despite calling my congressman and having our SW email USCIS, we are still waiting for any info... :(

beth o'malley said...

hey--come visit my site. It's all about lifebooks. I'm a social worker, writer and adoptee. You can sign up for free tips and a monthly newsletter. Take Care Beth O'Malley