Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Now what?

When we realized our homestudy was done we looked at each other and said "now what?" It seems like the homestudy totally ruled our life for so long that we didn't know what was next! But, it seems like more paperwork is in order. Ethiopia wants a few more things that Canada didn't want - no big deal - just a few more pieces of paper.

Right now as we speak our homestudy is on its way for ministry (provincial) approval. This can take 8-12 weeks we are told. So... hopefully by October(??) we will go to the next step and send the paper work off to Ethiopia.

So, now its a matter of sitting back and waiting -that's the name of the game from now on out I am afraid. Part of me says - we have waited this long whats another year or so and the other part says - bring it on now!!!!! oh boy. definitely not looking forward to the waiting.

The good news is that i am on holidays for 2 weeks!!! This week is a do stuff around the house and R&R week and on Friday Mike and I leave for camping. Can't wait!!!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Homestudy done - check!!

We just got back from our AP - with a copy of our report - signed, sealed and delivered. What a day!!!! Its hard to believe we are done and will now join the ranks of 'the waiting'. From here on out its a waiting game - waiting for ministry approval, referral etc etc. But i am not complaining!!! It feels so good to be on to that next phase and to get one step closer to our dream!! Yippeee!!!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Is the room spining or is it just me???

Wow - what a week its been! Thursday i did get most of the cleaning and fixing up done. Mike did more on Friday afternoon. At first it really freaked me out to only have 2 days notice before the home visit - but it was kind of like riping the band aid off fast - it hurt for a short while and then it was all over. I am sure if i had weeks to clean i would have driven mike and everyone else crazy.

I am very good at playing head games. The adoption world has a very definite 'sub-culture'. There is so much support out there. So many people have blogs, there are chat groups and info everywhere you look. i have loved to read other people's blogs- they educate, inform, support, give hope and are fun. I love to see pictures of kids that are home and read the stories of how they are adjusting and bonding in their new families. I was also shocked/surprised that other prospective adopting parents are reading my blog - i felt almost famous -almost anyway. thanks for joining in. Anyhoo - all to say that all this info is very helpful but can also freak you out. I often compare my situation to others and then get into trouble. That is one reason (i think) that i had a major melt down this week. As i mentioned earlier this week, our home study was just really dragging along. We had done all the paperwork - and it felt like nothing was happening. Then all of a sudden things really picked up. Then i started 2nd guessing myself and this process. it seemed to be moving too fast - i had totally convinced myself that it was moving so fast because we were getting rejected. Now some of you will scoff at that and say - are you kidding - chill out. But you have to realize that having a family is out of our hands. We are asking other people to assess us to see if we will be good enough to be parents - its really scary -they have to power to deny us. Of coarse - i know we will be great parents - but does the rest of the world?? I know God is in control - but we all know that I would like to be in control - its a lesson that i learn over and over... Anyhoo - thanks to Nancy for keeping me grounded (at least she tried) on Friday. Also, it seemed that our home study was progressing in a way i had not read about and it freaked me out. Fast forward to Friday evening - the AP came - loves our house (even the dirty windows, crazy renos and creaking floors) and loves us. We have passed with no objection on her part. We got to read her report and i was very impressed. She asked if there was anything i wanted to change - and i was just so happy we weren't rejected that i couldn't think of a thing.

Today - i feel like a HUGE weight has been lifted off my (our) shoulders. I am happily doing the million loads of laundry that i hid all around the house. We are on to the next step... We will go Monday night and sign the 'document' and then it gets sent to our agency and then to the ministry. Now - believe it or not - there is more paper work to be done. Our Ethiopian Dossier requires a few more things that our home study didn't. I have been ignoring it to concentrate on the home study so - its time to get that done too. We are one step closer!!!!!!

In the last week 2 different people have reminded me that at the end of this circus there is a real live baby that we will meet and bring here. Some times the baby seems like an abstract concept to me. Maybe its a coping mechanism (we have had lots of disappointments)- and really - its still a long way off - but we will have a baby!!!! These 2 friends have reminded me that God has one specific child in mind for us - the timing of home studies and medicals and visas all happen for a reason - that one child will be ready for us when we are ready for her/him.

Can't wait to meet you baby!!!!!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Be careful what you wish for...

Oh boy - just the other day i was complaining that our home study was taking FOREVER!!!! So i sent a quick email to our AP on Tuesday. She said - well why don't you come by on Wednesday! So we had our second meeting with her last night. Then last night she said " why don't we do the home visit on Friday" - good thing her back was to us cause i just about fell off my chair - oh sure, ya that should be fine i said. so of coarse instead of cleaning and getting ready i am blogging. We also set a date for our last meeting - Monday. that means our home study is very close to being done. Wow - all of a sudden things are moving at a crazy speed - hope i can keep up. We also decided last night to stay with the Ethiopia program. The only real reason i wanted to switch was in the hopes that it might be a faster program. Our AP advised that new programs can have big problems - and the less 'surprises' the better. Which i do agree on - so Ethiopia here we come. Now back to the cleaning... Why did we ever buy such a big house?????

Sunday, July 6, 2008

one more thing...

I just wanted to add one more thing about the starfish blog. i really hope you don't get the idea that mike and i are 'saints' because we have chosen to adopt. That is not at all how we feel about ourselves or this whole process. actually i feel selfish - for wanting a baby to complete our family when there is a whole bunch of older kids out there who need a good home. This baby will be giving up alot in life to be in our family - his culture/roots/people. we hope to teach and instill as much as we can regarding his culture but in some ways he is getting the raw end of the deal. International adoption is not easy for anyone. So - no we are not saints and adoption is not the solution to the millions of AIDS orphans in Africa but we are doing what we can.


I really hope that you aren't counting on this blog for entertainment. I haven't posted anything because it really feels like nothing is happening. We are waiting on our Adoption Pract. to have our next meeting. I had this idea that our home study would take a month or so - but now i am thinking i wasn't very realistic. All of our paper work is in so we are assuming we will meet with her again very soon. We need to meet with her 4 times - so i am guessing we wont be done the home study till the end of the summer. Then she will write her report and i am not even going to guess how long that will take. Its kind of frustrating especially when this is the part that is supposed to go fast. Anyhoo - enough of that.

One good thing is that we got our physicals done. We are just waiting on our HIV tests. The Dr says we are both healthy as horses and great candidates for parenthood. One more thing off the list - yippeee.

We received news that our agency has opened a new program in Ghana - which is west Africa - one country south of Mike's dad Chuck (who is in Burkina Faso). We are investigating this new program. When we decided to adopt internationally we really didn't have a preference as to where to look. Africa in general did seem to call to us. Its still really up in the air if we would switch - we have learned so much about Ethiopia and it would be a bit of a upheaval to pick a new program. We are still able to switch at this point but would need to decide soon. This is a bit of a curve ball. The program looks like it will run smoothly with shorter wait times - but you never know where the catch will be. We are definitely considering it. We wouldn't really be too excited about being one of the first to try it out - but you never know. The Ethiopia program is only a year old so we have the benefit of the experience of those who have gone before. It just seems like there are sooooo many people in line ahead of us in Ethiopia. I am really just being impatient!!!!!!!!!

In other news...We went to the beach today. i love the beach -we went to the Pinery at Grand Bend. It was so beautiful and there was a great cool breeze. Mike is a bit lobsterish. Live and learn i hope.

We also started a reno project this week (i hope the Adopt. Pract. will be able to see our 'vision' when she comes here to inspect the house!!). I am taking holidays in 2 weeks and decided i would like to paint the upstairs hallway when i am off. Well - painting has lead to the walls (old plaster) coming down, walls coming down lead to ceiling coming down, lead to new lights and who knows what all before we are done. The demo is great fun and hopefully the rest will be as well. Its a nice feeling to be making some progress in the house dept.

Anyhoo - that's about it for now. I am going to add a bit of a time line so you know what we are working on - we are still at the very beginning. Ahhh - some day i will be so busy with a new baby that i wont have time to fool with a computer!!!!