The clichéd saying that “patience is a virtue” may ignite some frustration when it comes to families waiting to adopt. You know there will be an adoption wait time when you start the adoption process, but when you go into the process so hopeful, any amount of waiting can be challenging.

There have been many families in your shoes who have gone through a long adoption process, waiting and wishing while ultimately trying to decide if it’s right for them to stick with it.

Fortunately, these families are offering up a little advice for those who feel like they’ve been waiting forever.

Timing Is Everything

There’s no other way to explain it sometimes. Timing of the process, the universe, and everything else just has to align. For Adrian and Vicki, the decision to renew their home study for another 12 months was their own perfect timing.

They had been with American Adoptions for two years, awaiting an adoption opportunity through a test of patience.

Two weeks after renewing their home study, they received the call. A birth mother was interested in them. And they were finally on their way to becoming parents.

Adrian and Vicki also have some words of wisdom for families waiting to adopt a child.

“Patience, sticking to your plan, not compromising—you landed on your profile for a reason because you made those choices you were comfortable with,” Adrian suggests.

“The other important thing is talking with your American Adoptions counselors who are helping with your case to determine if there is anything else you can do,” Vicki adds. “It’s also a lot of open communication with each other because it’s hard sometimes as a couple on you—this long wait—and you have different mixed emotions about it. So, talking about it openly and honestly is always good, as well.”

Find Something to Stay Busy

For many adoptive parents, you are not part of the pregnancy process. You don’t get to be around as the baby grows inside the birth mother while your family is waiting to adopt. So, to stay busy and keep looking forward to the future, adoptive mother Kristin created a nursery for their future baby.

“When you’re pregnant, you physically do something for nine months, whereas with adoption, after all of the paperwork, there’s nothing you physically can do,” Kristin says. “That helped me, getting the nursery ready.”

This, of course, may not be helpful to everyone. But finding other things to help you look forward to the future with your child can help. When you’re not focused on how long the wait time is to adopt, you can put your energy to use in other parts of your life to prepare for your future baby.

Remember Why You’re Doing This

When it comes down to it, you have to remember why you’re doing this. For adoptive parents Natasha and Cameron, after three disruptions, they knew they wanted to have a family and kept waiting for the birth mother who would choose them. Currently, they are raising their son, Ellis, fulfilling the life they had envisioned for years.

“Everyone always said this to us: When the opportunity that comes to you comes to you — the one that is supposed to work — you just know,” Natasha says. “I don’t know if there’s anything anyone could have said to me or to us that would have resonated after multiple disruptions. I don’t know if there’s anything anyone could have said that I would have been like, ‘I’ll just hold onto that, and that will get me through.’ The only thing I could say is, try to remember the reason why you’re doing it.”

Learn more from adoptive families who have gone through long wait times before getting their call. Families waiting to adopt have many resources to help them on their journey, including their adoption specialist. You can reach out to your adoption specialist anytime at 1-800-ADOPTION.