Yes, expectant mothers choose the waiting families.
The caseworkers take the profiles of the waiting families and the situation/needs/wants of the expectant mother and scans starting at the top of the list for a handful of potential matches. The expectant mother reviews the handful of profiles and decides. If she's not sure, she can ask for more profiles to view. Typically there will be a meeting between the mother and the waiting family or families before the final decision. At this point, both parties decide whether they believe the match will work.
The list is set up to try to make it fair to the waiting families who have been in the pool the longest but there's always special cases (like the call we got last week) where you can be farther down and get a phone call. During our education class, the caseworkers mentioned that you really don't want to get to No. 1 because that typically means they are having trouble matching your needs/wants with expectant mothers' situation/needs/wants.
One more tidbit. I believe that we were called and asked if we wanted our profile to be shown because the situation was out of the norm compared to our checklist. I don't think they would necessarily ask us if we wanted our profile to be shown if the situation is well within our parameters. I think they would let us know that we are being profiled.
That's it in a nutshell! Class dismissed. ;-)
I feel like we have no control. I realize it's normal to feel this way but when I was talking to my boss about how to divvy up my projects once I go flying out the door for three months, it hit me. My lack of control over the situation affects everyone I work with. Some of them will get stuck in the middle of a project I started, or my boss will have to ask the client if we can delay until I get back from maternity leave. At least with a pregnancy you can sort of plan!
Today I hope to buy a really cool dresser to double as a changing table. Keep your fingers crossed for me that it isn't sold by the time I can drive an hour across town to look at it! I like Crai.gslist and getting good stuff for cheap but geez, it can be a hassle.