Even though our wait has been much longer than anticipated (we were told 12-15 months and it's been 20), there is no doubt in my mind that we made the right choice to adopt domestically with this particular agency. When I think back on how naive we were when we made our decision and how much we went with our gut, it's almost frightening. We made the decision mostly on how we felt after going to the agency's informational meeting without a lot of other research.
Our agency creates a relatively controlled environment, there's the list for one thing, and the matching when the mothers are close to giving birth rather than months ahead of time. I thought this was how it goes...then I started reading blogs of families who go through all different avenues for domestic adoption. There's using facilitators, lawyers, traveling to other states, using agencies that work in several states, and good old fashioned networking. The possibilities are practically endless when you talk about domestic adoption. It's no wonder that the general public is confused about adoption. I see it in my workplace with the questions I get from certain people. One co-worker obviously has issues with adoption (or just doesn't know how to ask questions). I've heard the following come out of his mouth: "Do they wisk the baby away from the mother and don't let her see it?", "So, you have to give them pictures for a while but then you can stop all contact, right?" Luckily it's only one guy who says this crap out loud.
I'm not sure I have a conclusion to all of these observations, they're just observations. Sure, it's tough to read about people getting matched right away or even being presented with opportunities to adopt even before their homestudy is complete, but then there's the stories much like mine. Waiting, waiting, and more waiting. I'm really counting on the wisdom of those who have come before me: That the pain of the wait fades quickly once you bring your baby home. Sometimes, that's all that keeps me going.