Ten Tips for a Better Adoption Trip
1. Get to know the lay of the land before you travel. Buy guide books, talk with people who have been there, click through the hundreds of links at AdoptionTravel.com
2. Arrive a couple days before you are scheduled to meet your child so you can acclimate to the time change and the culture. This is especially important if you are a first-time parent and/or this is your first trans-Atlantic or trans-Pacific trip.
3. Bring every over-the-counter medication you think you might need: antihistamine, acetaminophen, melatonin (for jet lag), and a large bottle of Pepto-bismal-not the cute travel size! Have prescription medications in their own labeled bottles.
4. You may get sick-real sick-with a foodborne illness. Use Pepto-bismal, not an immodium product. Pepto-bismal will slow the diarrhea and let the "bug" flow out. An immodium product will trap the bug inside. Also, bring a half dozen or so adult size diapers. You may become sick on a day of travel and you will be glad you have them! Bring your favorite comfort foods. We brought instant oatmeal.
5. Bring a copy of your entire dossier - including a photocopy of your child's VISA approval (I171-H).
6. Don't bring a lot of jarred baby food. Wait until you get home to introduce your child to new foods. Bring soy formula and transition to regular formula at home.
7. Bring a stroller, and for babies a snugglie, or a Sarah's Ride (1-800-LITTLE-1) for toddlers.
8. Save money-fax notes home. Send e-mail if you can find a connection.
9. Before you leave, make an appointment with the pediatrician for complete medical examination once you return, including stool and blood work. Give a copy of Dr. Dana Johnson's article to your pediatrician. (To order a copy call 888-436-5461.)
10. Also before you leave, prepare children who will remain at home for your extended separation and the incoming sibling. Read a book like Seeds of Love together. It will make the time apart easier for all of you.
© Mary Petertyl, Folio One Publishing, AdoptionTravel.com
Author of Seeds of Love: For Brothers and Sisters of Int'l Adoption and creator of the NEW International Adoption Travel Journal, available at http://www.adoptiontravel.com/order.htm or call 888-436-5461 or 616-365-0650
Published on 6/1/98