Most parents want to know some ways to help Gotcha Day go smoother. Gotcha Day is the day of your adoption when your child comes into your care for now and for always. It is a day that can be very exciting but can also be stressful, both to you and your child. These are some ways to help Gotcha Day go smoother.
1. Accept It May Not Be an Easy Transition
This is one of the first ways to help Gotcha Day go smoother. Just realize that it may not be an easy transition for your child to be transferred over into your care. Even though your child may be young, they are leaving all they know and all that is familiar to them. That isn’t easy, especially when you are little and don’t have the understanding an adult does of a situation like that. Adjusting your expectations can make the day easier.
2. Plan for a Variety of Emotions
It is wise to plan for a variety of emotions from your child. They could be thrilled to see you and happy to go with you. They may be frightened and combative. They could have a huge variety of emotions. Try to be mentally prepared for any emotion they may have.
3. Take Some Small Gifts
It can be helpful to take along some little gifts on your adoption Gotcha Day. Sometimes it can be just the thing to make your child comfortable with you. It is also a little distraction you can use if they are upset. Something small that they can hold is a good choice. There will be time for bigger gifts later.
4. Let Your Child Set the Pace
It may take a while for your child to warm up to you, especially if they are very young or if they haven’t seen you before or have only seen you rarely. It is best to be patient in this situation. Allow your child to set the pace. Let them warm up to you. Taking a little extra time to allow them to get comfortable is very well worth it.
5. Take Photos Sparingly
Of course this is one of the most exciting days of your life. You may have anticipated it for months or even years. And taking pictures is fine. But you don’t want to turn the day into one continuous photo shoot because it could make your child feel uneasy. It certainly won’t add to their feelings of comfort. Take a few pictures and put the camera away.
6. Don’t Make Big Plans for the Day
If you can, try to schedule a down day for your adoption Gotcha Day. Of course you want to show your new child off to everyone but day one may not be the best day for that. You want to give your child time to grow comfortable. The change in their living arrangements and transfer to your care is a lot for a child to adjust to, in and of itself. Save the big plans for another day.
7. Expect They May Need Some Medical Treatment
You child may need some medical care when they you receive them. This may be especially true if you are adopting internationally. Be prepared that your child may be ill when you receive them. It can be good to schedule an appointment with your pediatrician as soon as you can. Even if they have a clean bill of health, it can be reassuring for you to hear that from your pediatrician.
These tips can help your adoption Gotcha Day go easier. Do you have any tips to share? Your comments are always welcome.