Friday, January 11, 2013

The bitter with the sweet

When "the list" comes out every month I usually try to forget it's the first week of the month and ignore my email.  Most of what I get in my gmail is junk or advertisements so it's not difficult for me to do.  But for some reason, this week was different.  Maybe because I have the expectation that we'll meet our little boy this year.  Maybe it's because I see how much Jack changes every day and it makes me that much more ready to have our little one with us so we don't miss a moment.  Whatever the reason, I waited anxiously this week.

In fact, I watched my phone almost hourly during working hours to see if anything had "popped" in.  I thought at about noon today that maybe it wasn't coming until next week since it was already late on Friday.  My heart sank every time something else hit the new mail list and it wasn't from our agency.  But finally, as promised, we got the email.

And it is something to rejoice about.  It is!  But we have to take the sweet with a little bitter.  The sweetness is that we have moved up to #16 on the list!  That is very exciting!  And the truth is, as I have stated before, we could be called at any time with a referral.  But the reality is, that is not likely to happen.  That's where the bitter comes in.  Not only were there no referrals in the last month, but the timeline (which was 6-8 months when we started this journey) is now 15-18 months for a referral.  We started on the waiting list last April which means it could be October before we get a referral!  And that's assuming the timeline doesn't get extended anymore.  And then getting a court date takes another few months.  So while I started the year thinking we would have our little one here by Christmas, that may not be the case.  Despite my frustration, I think what is really weighing on my heart is that the only thing that's holding up this process is bureaucracy.  It's not that the number of kids that need family has diminished, no, it's just one more step in the process added which means the number of children waiting is, if anything, increasing.

I know I've said a million times that I am glad they go through the steps they do to ensure all these children cannot find homes in the country or with family members.  And I am happy for that because it is the ultimate goal.  But that doesn't make the wait any easier.

So we take the bitter with the sweet, remember that we're #16, and pray for patience and stamina in the waiting.  God's timing is perfect!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Welcome to 2013 and all it may bring

This last year has been filled with amazing blessings for our family.  The spring semester allowed my husband to stop working in the restaurant world and work full time as a teacher.  He was blessed with a great job and is seeing his passion come to fruition by impacting the lives of young people. We saw Jack turn one this year and have enjoyed watching him grow and change and learn every day. We've watched him learn to walk, talk, and his personality develop into a vibrant, hilarious, little boy. As usual, I got to travel this year to multiple international places for work. Since our family has grown, it has become more emotionally difficult for me to travel internationally.  However, this year brought two amazing trips for me! In August I got to go to Italy and Paris with my sister, Sita.  Never in a million years did I think this trip possible and it was so fun! It brought us so much closer and just makes me long to live near her family.  In September I got to go to Japan with my Aunt Lynn.  Again, never did I think this trip would happen but it was such a blessing to me and was a true emotional rejuvenation!  I feel so blessed to have these women in my life and am over the moon to have had these experiences with them.

2012 allowed us many travels near and far, time with family and friends, some beautiful weddings of dear friends, new beautiful babies of dear friends, birthdays, anniversaries...overall a pretty amazing year of life.

With our adoption in 2012, we finalized our homestudy, received our immigration approval, and landed on the waiting list.  We ended 2012 at #18 on the list and, given the current timelines, are hoping to see a referral between April and July.  Four months seems so close but seven seems so far!  We believe our little boy, James, was born in 2012 and we are praying we get to have him in our arms in 2013.  We do not know what the future holds and we know there is a risk in every step of life, but this risk is well worth taking.

I hope and pray that by the time I write this post next year I get to tell you about our amazing trip to Uganda, and our beautiful family with our two little boys, Jack and James.  But I only know for certain what is today, and I want to live each one as it comes.  At the same time, I look forward to the future when our baby boy will be home and our family will be closer to completion.  I am reminded of Hebrews 11:1 which says "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."

Hope your new year is filled with love, joy, and many blessings!