Friday, December 2, 2011

Confession Friday

Hey there - yes we are still here. We have little in the way of updates. We are still missing one important piece of paper - this paper is standing between us getting to court. So, if you think of us (and a few other families) please continue to pray that this will all be cleared up real soon.
And now for my confessions:
*this week Bedi turned 1. Yep he had his birthday on Monday. I actually made it through the day without being a huge mess. I never imagined we would have him home for his birthday but i imagined by now we would be waiting for his visa. It is hard to think of him being in the orphanage for so long and without us. Next year will be the party to end all birthday parties! We love you sweet boy - Happy Birthday.

*I know that you have heard me say this wait has been hard... hard doesn't cut it. There have been time (are times) that we aren't sure that we will get Bedi. In the past weeks hope and despair can live in the same moment. Our friends and family have been wonderful in the encouragement department and in the prayer department - continually lifting us up. And i can feel it and it gets me through those tough days. Thanks peeps. Most of all Mike has been a rock. We often take turns being the 'strong' one - but lately its been all Mike. This song was on the radio today and it is so true for us.

God Gave Me You
I’ve been a walking heartache
I’ve made a mess of me
The person that I’ve been lately
Ain’t who I wanna be

But you stay here right beside me
Watch as the storm goes through
And I need you

God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
For when I think I’ve lost my way
There are no words here left to say, it’s true
God gave me you

There’s more here than what were seeing
A divine conspiracy
That you, an angel lovely
Could somehow fall for me
You’ll always be love’s great martyr
Ill be the flattered fool
And I need you

God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
For when I think I’ve lost my way
There are no words here left to say, it’s true
God gave me you

On my own I’m only
Half of what I could be
I can’t do without you
We are stitched together
And what love has tethered
I pray we never undo

God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
God gave me you for the ups and downs
God gave me you for the days of doubt
For when I think I’ve lost my way
There are no words here left to say, it’s true
God gave me you, gave me you
Gave me you
Blake Shelton

Friday, October 28, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess:

*Its been a long hard week. Actually it's been a long hard 4 months since we got our referral. Last week we finally got an answer as to why we don't have a court date. We aren't even eligible for a court date... To make a long story short, we are missing paperwork in Bedi's file. This mysterious paper work has been missing for about 4 months and we weren't told. It is tiring and scary and we would just like some answers.

*We got new pics of our Bedi yesterday. He is getting so big!! He looks healthy and happy. Today he is 11 months old.

*I have the day off and feel very little ambition to get out of my PJ's and do anything constructive.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

While I am Waiting

This waiting has got to be the hardest EVER. It does not get easier people! I was reminded of this song and how i would like to be waiting... Truth is i have been just about as far opposite from this song as i could be...It is hard. Today is a new day.


I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Takeing every step in obedience
While I'm waiting
I will serve You
While I'm waiting
I will worship
While I'm waiting
I will not faint
I'll be running the race
Even while I wait

I'm waiting
I'm waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I'm waiting on You, Lord
Though it's not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve You while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting
I will serve you while I'm waiting
I will worship while I'm waiting on You, Lord

John Waller

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

The Adoption Community

When we began our adoption we never guessed that we would become a part of the 'adoption community'. I didn't even really know that one existed. I remember thinking that we were 'the only ones'. I knew it wasn't true - but it can be a very lonely path. Back in those days i had no idea of people we would meet along the way.

First of all i stumbled upon my first blog. I didn't even really know about blogs much back then. I learned so much. I saw photos of families home with their kids. I joined the journey of others - sometimes laughing and sometimes crying.

Then i joined a chat group - huge step for me. This has been a source of encouragement and sometimes frustration. From there I actually met a few people and we have become close friends!!! There are others that I email.

Last night we met, in person, a couple who are adopting Bedi's roommate. Our kids are just weeks apart in age and have been in the same orphanage for quite a few months. They live 5 minutes from our house. That is right 5 minutes - a short walk. Here they are in our little old town. Our kids have been living together - and they got to see Bedi when they met their sweet girl!!! Who would have ever thought???

These people 'get it'. We walk this journey together. They understand like no other. If you are beginning your adoption journey, consider getting involved, stepping out and meeting others.
Today we heard sad news in our community. A mom who just brought home her son in the spring has passed away. And so, even though we never met or knew each other, i grieve her loss and pray for her husband and son. We are part of a community and we hurt.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Summer photos

There has been nothing new to report. We are still waiting on the courts to reopen. Still mostly hanging in there.

Thought i would share some photos.











Monday, August 15, 2011

a smile to my face **plus edit

You have heard me say this before - i am sick of waiting. I am sick of being patient. I am sick of smiling and saying 'he will be home soon'. So, if you don't feel like listening to me complain, that is fine - you can move along.

All of this time (the past 3+ years) - the light at the end of the tunnel was getting a referral. That is the big ticket item. That is the day you hope and pray for and dream about. The day that you learn who your child is. Is it a boy or girl? How old? and seeing that picture of your child... is a priceless moment in life. The ultimate is the day you meet and bring your baby home - but the big deal is the referral.

Friends had told me that the wait AFTER the referral was the worst. I thought - how could that be? The guessing game is done, you know who your child is and you have a rough estimate of when this ordeal will be over and you can begin your life as a family of 3. I thought to myself "how can it be worse than this"? But guess what, they were right. If you are still waiting for your referral - please know - its not all sunshine and roses. Sorry, maybe it will be different for you. I really hope so. You just need to be prepared. Its kind of like post-referral-depression or something.

The referral is a definite high. Its what you have been dreaming of and waiting for. I printed a million copies of those grainy photos and put them EVERY WHERE. I can not take too many steps at home or at work without seeing Bedi's face. and its torture. I made a comment on the chat group that it might be time to take some of the photos down so it didn't hurt so much - but i just couldn't do it. How can i put his sweet face away?

Here are the facts that my head knows: Bedi is being cared for at a very good orphanage. I have heard first hand from multiple sources that this is true. I know that adding 2 or 3 months to a 3 1/2 year process is really not that big of a deal. I know that we have a child who is (almost) ours and we will have the rest of our lives to be together. I know he is being loved. I also know that Bedi has and will suffer more than we can imagine. He has lost his birth parents, will loose his birth country, his language, his culture, his heritage. We will do what we can to make up for that. And so, my impatience and 'suffering' is nothing compared to that. My head knows that God's timing is perfect - His plan is perfect. We are in His hands. October is not far away (when the courts open again and hopefully will find out when we go for our first visit).

Here is what my heart knows: I am not the one caring for Bedi. He is getting bigger, growing and changing - he probably looks nothing like the 2 little photos that i stare at all day long. We don't know when we will travel. This court closure thing sucks. I feel like my faith is very small right now and that i am complaining and whining alot. Right now, if you ask me, I will tell you and complain and give the 'real' answer.

And so, you might ask - why the title. Doesn't seem like you are smiling much. While i am feeling pretty crappy about this whole thing, I have been given a little nugget to hold on to. A bit of faith that i can grasp.

There happens to be a couple in a small town about 15 minutes from where we live. They are adopting as well. I have always known 'about them', heard about them from different people - but never met them or made contact. Until last week. Their little girl is just weeks older than our Bedi and came from the same city. As i type they are living together in the orphanage. They are buddies. D's mom emailed me and let me know that she has SEEN our precious Bedi. She has talked to him, tickled him and made him smile and laugh. She said he thought he looked healthy and like he was a good weight. Music to my ears. What an amazing gift this has been. Its making it just a bit easier. And so God provides just a little something, a little bit of hope just when i need it.

It's a nugget, a tiny glimpse of our son. I am still complaining and feeling like crap. But its just a little something to take the edge off.

EDIT:
to add to the story of our new friends and their visit with Bedi - i have now found out that they do not in fact live 15 minutes away in another town - but actually 5 minutes away - just down the street in our own little town!!! Our kids would likely go to the same school!!! How cool is that? Looking forward to meeting you E!!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Helping

By now, you will have heard about the famine in East Africa.

Its hard to explain how international 'news' touches you when it involves your child's homeland. It feels like it is happening to my home. There are many ways that you can donate to help with the relief effort. MCC (Mennonite Central Committee) is one of them. Right now the Canadian Government is matching donations.

http://canada.mcc.org/eastafricadrought/cida

I often wonder how our country would manage if we really had a disaster like this. I pray others would help us as we have to opportunity to help Africa. Please give if you can. Not everyone can give and that is ok. Prayer is also an important response.

Thanks for considering it.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess:
* I almost didn't confess - it's just too hot
*We had a wonderful lazy vacation. We were camping up north and it was so good. Mind you it was really hot.... I am talking high 20's and low 30's in the shade. Then again we weren't doing too much but sitting by the water, swimming and reading so that was ok. We did get eaten alive though.... every sort of biting bug got me. My feet look like a mine field!!!
*Every year i look at all the families at the beach and i dream of what it will be like to be a family of 3 at the beach. We did enjoy our peace and freedom but won't it be fun to introduce Bedi to the fun of camping.
*we took absolutely no pictures during our holiday. Except for a few shots mike took of the food we were cooking one night... it was really good. So, just picture the 2 of us lounging with a book in hand and that would be our holiday.
*one high light for me is the fire flies. i have never seen so many fire flies as we see at this park. Every night they come out and flit about. they are so magical to me, so pretty and so random.
*Poor kid - we have been calling him Bedi - and when people ask me about Devin I have to think about who they are talking about. I guess i think of him as Bedi - until he is ours at least. Maybe Bedi will stick though.
*I worry sometimes that this is just a big joke and that Bedi will never come home. I like to think that i am ok with this whole court closure thing adding 2 more months to his time in an orphanage. I try not to get anxious or upset - what good does it do? But oh do i wish he could just come home. I guess i am getting used to the not knowing thing - but it would be really nice to find out when we go to E
*We had planned to do some traveling into the country when we go to E the first time. If you haven't heard there is a drought going on and lots of people are starving. I think i will feel guilty driving into the country side and eating whatever i want. I am not sure what we will do. I want to see where Bedi comes from and help if we can - but i don't want to be a 'rich foreigner' or take from anyone else. Dealing with a country and poverty is one thing but dealing with a drought and people starving is something totally different. I really want to respect the people...

Friday, July 1, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess:
*its friday but i really didn't know what day of the week it is!! We have been on holidays and this week feels like a repeating Saturday!! Probably because i have done alot of cleaning and house stuff. As you can see from Mike's post - our bedroom is getting an overhaul and it's looking great. Still have some trim work to do and paint and some curtains to hang and it should be done!!! Looking forward to the 'finished' pics and moving on to our next project :)

*We went to the Toronto Zoo yesterday and were a bit disappointed. I guess i was expecting to see more animals... Some exhibits were empty, some poor animals were hot and tired and you could just barely see them... We decided it will be alot of years before we take Devin. There were lots of kiddies having lots of melt downs!!!! Its a huge place with lots of walking.

*We finally were able to sign the forms to accept our referral. There were a few complications and i was getting worried that it was going to fall through... But its all signed and sealed and now we wait to see when we will go for court. Not sure if we will sneak in before closures happen or not.

*Momma bear instincts came to the surface when we found out wee Devin was in hospital last week. He had a flu that lead to dehydration. Poor fella. I have been feeling good about the care he is getting - but when i found out he has been sick, i just want to be the one to look after him!!!! He is doing better now and is back at the orphanage again.

*I think i have a decorating idea for the nursery... finding it fun to think about getting it finished!!!

*Today might just be a lazy day. After our trek at the zoo yesterday in the heat, it might just be nice to chill for today.

Happy Canada Day!!!!!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Work-cation

So, we decided to take a week off work to get some projects done around the house. One such project is our master bedroom. Here is what it looked like before: (well, minus the ladder and with a little more furniture!)

I (Mike) did find some wiring issues that needed attention too. No surprise in a house this old!


The ceiling has been changed from a taupe to a flat white:
...and the walls from beige to "black pepper"!
Brenda has a good eye for colour, and accessories. She is the brains behind this outfit, an I provide the labour! Our house is slowly coming together, one room at a time. The next project will be the game/toy room! It looks like I had better get to work on that soon, before Devin gets home!!



Monday, June 20, 2011

The Referral Story



Where to start??? So much to say! It has been a whirlwind since last Thursday June the 16th - the day we found out we have a son! It sure was a shock to us. As you can see, the post before was quite somber. I was pretty down about more waiting and wondering where our paperwork was. I was definitely not expecting a referral on that day!!

First of all let me say thank you for all the warm wishes - phone calls and emails. I haven't been able to get back to you all yet - but give me some time and I will. The weekend was a busy with showing off our beautiful son to anyone who would listen :) My mom and sister managed to sneak in a surprise birthday party as well on Saturday. What a great time to show off Bedilu to all my girlfriends!!!!

Our boy is amazing. His eyes are huge and beautiful - and his cheeks are ready to be pinched. He is so sweet!!! I wish I could show you all his photo - but we will need to wait till after our court date.

We have not officially accepted the referral but hope to do that in the next few days. This should put is in a good place to have a court date in August!!!!!! That has my head spinning!!!

So, on to the 'referral story'.

Thursday, June 16. I was out of the office for most of the day. We had a team building 'staff day'. It was a good day. Most of the staff enjoyed a picture scavenger hunt but i stayed back to help a friend get the bbq lunch ready. We had a nice visit and talked about all sorts of things including the adoption and next steps. At lunch i sat with 2 co-workers who have adopted and they each told the stories of adopting their kids. It seemed like i was talking 'adoption' alot! Near the end of the day, I gave a co-worker a ride to a store near our house and then decided to go home. I actually turned into the driveway but then decided i better go back to the office (5 minutes away) as i still technically had another hour of work. As soon as i got back i noticed a phone message. I was expecting a message from one of the stores, as i realized i forgot to do a message saying i was out of the office. It was a woman (who's name i didn't recognize) saying "we just sent you a very important email, you really need to check it, you will be very happy, please check it right away". I knew instantly what 'it' was. I was shaking so hard i could hardly think straight. Not sure how many tries it took to dial Mike's cell phone. I have no idea what i said something like ' you need to come home NOW - we have an email, we have an email!!!!!!' I was just beside myself!!! I got my stuff together and found the only other person in the office - i am pretty sure i scared to socks off of her!! i was jumping up and down, babbling away - we got an email, i have got to go - we got an email!!! she looked at me like i had 10 heads, she hugged me and then i left. I do remember that she had tears in her eyes.

I got in the truck and i remember thinking i need to settle down or i would get in an accident! So, i took a deep breath and drove home. A bit down the street, a few more co-workers were returning and i pulled over and rolled down the window and said 'we have an email!!!!' and then i sped off. They must have thought i was off my rocker!

When i got home, i opened the computer and saw the email - sent at 10:30am - and by now it was 3:30pm! I called my mom - still shaking!!! She kept me on the phone till Mike got home, so that i wouldn't open the email without him!!! It seemed like forEVER till Mike got home. He rushed in, and we hit the button and the face of our beautiful SON appeared. It took a while to figure things out because i just couldn't focus long enough to read the details. Later on Ange would ask things like, what orphanage is he at - and i had no idea cause all i could handle was that he was a boy named Bedilu. What a moment!!!! The first time you see your Son's face. So amazing!!!!!!!!!!! He is absolutely wonderful. I just looked at Mike and said 'we have a boy!' Its so crazy, cause we have been waiting for 3+ years and still nothing prepares you for the moment you see your boy!!!! Eventually, Mike had to go back to work - and i starting calling anyone who would listen! I still wasn't making much sense... I left alot of messages on machines where i was pretty much just screaming - and got quite a few call backs of screaming in my ear!!! SO MUCH FUN!!!!

That first night i didn't sleep too much - WAY to excited!!!! But you know what? I now have a peace about where he is and how he is being cared for. I didn't expect that - I thought i would be worried more. Do i wish it was me rocking him to sleep and feeding him? Of coarse i do. But now that i know where he is, i can relax because he is being well cared for - the folks in that orphanage are doing a great job caring for him - I have no doubt about that. Up until now i just didn't know where he was or if he was being cared for and now i have no doubt about it.

It is still sinking in. I look at Mike a few times a day and say 'we have a boy!' It feels hard to believe!! And then i see the photo and i just can't stop staring into his eyes!!! I can't believe that we have such a beautiful boy!! He is the cutest baby i have ever seen!!!! I am sure that you will all agree with me :)

The rest of the weekend is a blur. A great day of shopping and hanging out on Saturday. A wonderful day on Sunday celebrating Father's Day and here we are. We are so blessed to have our son. It is just amazing to me to have him in our lives. I know that its been a long haul and lots of times that i didn't believe it would happen. I need to thank all of those who rose up after the bankruptcy and made things happen. I didn't believe in it at first. I just didn't believe it would work. I need to thank all you - our friends and family for encouraging us and praying for us through this whole process. We couldn't have made it this far without all of you. Thanks to God for blessing us so much more than we imagined or expected. We are humbled by the honour of parenting this amazing boy!

WE HAVE A BOY!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

not nothin

WE HAVE A BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Got the call today - story to follow

he is the sweetest thing ever!!!

7 months old - born Nov 28/10

cute as can be

so excited

praising God for His faithfulness and goodness to us and to baby

his name is Devin Shawn Bedilu

must try to sleep

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

nothin

I got nothin for ya. No new news. I have been told that we are at 'the top' of the list. Which i have already found very tiring. Every time the phone rings you jump and wonder... but we could be at the top of that list for a long time. My dear friends R&A have been at the top of their list for over a year now...

Paperwork is still an issue. Misplaced is a better word than lost and i think things are on the right track again. Its supposed to all be done in 2 weeks - so ask me then. It should have been done over 2 months ago but who's counting. It all got 'lost' in the shuffle of the handover from Imagine to MoT.

And so we continue to wait. Feeling a bit frustrated and frankly tired. The best thing ever was meeting sweet little Addis last week. Oh how wonderful to hold and play with that little guy. I am so excited for my friends as they begin their journey of parenthood!!! And for me it was a good reminder - this will end some day with our baby home!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Secret Daughter

I just read an amazing book called Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda.

This book just really hit home to me on a few different levels. So many things to relate to. Hope I don't give too much away :)

Its a story of a woman giving up her baby in rural India. For me, this part of the story allows me to relate to our birth mother. We don't have a referral yet - so we don't know what our story will be. But when i read this story i see the amazing love this mother has for her child. I see the determination for this child to live and thrive. I see the love this mother has for her child all of her life. She wonders every day how her child is and what she is doing - every day. Giving up your child is not a a thing done lightly. I wonder if our birth mother will ever be at peace knowing how her child is being raised. I hope so.

Its a story of an adoptive mother who yearns for a child. I have lived her pain. It was hard to read. It was part of my story - and so it was very real to me. It put into words what i have felt at one time or another. Its not totally my story- as my relationship with my husband has only been strengthened through this whole thing - a blessing for sure. But, to see in words what i have felt - a validation in a way - was very powerful to me.

Its a story of a child growing up in a an adoptive family and longing to know her past and who she is. And its painful and hard but its necessary to figure out. I want to be able to walk with our child along this difficult journey and be able to help them answer those tough questions in their lives.

It's also a trip to India. We work in India and i feel a connection there. What an eye opener into the country of India.

So, there you have it. A good read. Hope you might enjoy it too.

Shots

I mentioned in my last post, that we were getting our shots. Yep, we did. We are officially pin cushions!!!

A while back our sweet, wonderful, compassionate and ever optimistic family Dr suggested we get in sooner than later for our travel shots. It can some times take up to 6 weeks to get an appointment - so i finally did it. They wanted to know exactly where we are going (don't know), when we are going (don't know) and all that good stuff. The amazing part was that the RN was an BTDT adoptive mom with a son from Korea and daughter from South Africa. So, she knew her stuff and understood our vague info and gave us our shots anyway. Kind of funny - i remember the first lady that took our finger prints also was an adoptive mom. Anyway - it was nice to meet her and talk to some one who gets it!!! Thanks nice RN lady!!!!

Anyhoo - back to the shots. I got a polio top up, Yellow Fever and the first Twinrix shot. I go back for the 2nd Twinrix shot and we are still out for debate on the Typhoid - Karen what do you think - do we need it? and what kind of Malaria we need. MIke got 4 shots. On our first trip we hope to do some travelling - don't know exactly where yet. We came away with info overload, sore arms, a huge bill and a smile on my face - knowing that we can stroke 'shots' off our list. It feels so good to be able to DO something again. I think that is the hardest part - the not being able to DO anything

So, we are ready to leave now any time - got our shots - now just bring on the referral!!!!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Confession Friday - on a Monday

I confess -
*its Monday. I had all weekend to blog and i just don't feel like i have much to say. Still waiting, still living... still waiting

*my heart hurts so much for my dear cousins. To loose their mom with such a shock. I just would love to take away the hurt. Love you guys

*i had a pretty sweet weekend. I actually had a few extra days off last week. I will confess that i did some fun stuff like reading an amazing book on my deck in the sun.

*I confess a sunburn is my proof that the sun did shine for 1/2 of the weekend.

*i confess that i am really hoping to hear that our file is on its way to E this week. It has been tracked down and the fear was confirmed - it was sitting somewhere, ignored and gathering dust... we seem to be just 'along for the ride' and at the mercy of people that we didn't choose to look after our business. enough said about that

*I confess we are getting our travel shots tomorrow. They want to know an itenerary and i made one up...cause i dont want to be scrambling to get our shots.

*i confess that my belief in miracles was renewed today when i read some amazing news on a fellow bloggers blog. Congrats to Nat and Chris!!!!

*I confess that we could use a miracle too and would like to get that referral this week - well, this month would be fine too

Monday, May 16, 2011

What It Might Feel Like to be Adopted - from Ruth's Rambles

The following was posted by Ruth a while back. It really struck a cord with me...and I wanted to share it. Adoption is just plain hard. There is no way around it. We will most likely be the 4th caregiver our child will have had. Even as an infant, he/she will be confussed and scared. There is even research to suggest that brain activity can be affected by the loss and change in caregiver. I will post soon about secure attachment and how we plan to be pro-active in our parenting.

Here is Ruth's post:



About a year ago, I read an article by Cynthia Hockman-Chupp, an article that first went to print in the Adoption Parenting publication. Hockman-Chupp is a writer and an adoptive parent, and she wrote the following analogy to help all pre-adoptive parents understand what adoption might feel like from a child's perspective. It haw haunted me since first reading it. Here it is in its entirety.

~~~~~~~~~~~~
A Different Perspective

Imagine for a moment...


You have met the person you’ve dreamed about all your life. He has every quality that you desire in a spouse. You plan for the wedding, enjoying every free moment with your fiancĂ©e. You love his touch, his smell, the way he looks into your eyes. For the first time in your life, you understand what is meant by “soul mate,” for this person understands you in a way that no one else does. Your heart beats in rhythm with his. Your emotions are intimately tied to his every joy, his every sorrow.

The wedding comes. It is a happy celebration, but the best part is that you are finally the wife of this wonderful man. You fall asleep that night, exhausted from the day’s events, but relaxed and joyful in the knowledge that you are next to the person who loves you more than anyone in the world...the person who will be with you for the rest of your life.

The next morning you wake up, nestled in your partner’s arms. You open your eyes and immediately look for his face. But it’s not him! You are in the arms of another man. You recoil in horror. Who is this man? Where is your beloved?

You ask questions of the new man, but it quickly becomes apparent that he doesn’t understand you. You search every room in the house, calling and calling for your husband. The new guy follows you around, trying to hug you, pat you on the back...even trying to stroke your arm, acting like everything is okay. But you know that nothing is okay. Your beloved is gone. Where is he? Will he return? When? What has happened to him?

Weeks pass. You cry and cry over the loss of your beloved. Sometimes you ache silently, in shock over what has happened. The new guy tries to comfort you. You appreciate his attempts, but he doesn’t speak your lan- guage-either verbally or emotionally. He doesn’t seem to realize the terrible thing that has happened...that your sweetheart is gone.

You find it difficult to sleep. The new guy tries to comfort you at bed-time with soft words and gentle touches, but you avoid him, preferring to sleep alone, away from him and any intimate words or contact. Months later, you still ache for your beloved, but gradually you are learning to trust this new guy. He’s finally learned that you like your coffee black, not doctored up with cream and sugar. Although you still don’t understand his bedtime songs, you like the lilt of his voice and take some comfort in it.

More time passes. One morning, you wake up to find a full suitcase sitting next to the front door. You try to ask him about it, but he just takes you by the hand and leads you to the car. You drive and drive and drive. Nothing is familiar. Where are you? Where is he taking you? You pull up to a large building. He leads you to an elevator and up to a room filled with people. Many are crying. Some are ecstatic with joy. You are confused. And worried.

The man leads you over to the corner. Another man opens his arms and sweeps you up in an embrace. He rubs your back and kisses your cheeks, obviously thrilled to see you. You are anything but thrilled to see him. Who in the world is he? Where is your beloved? You reach for the man who brought you, but he just smiles (although he seems to be tearing up, which concerns you), pats you on the back, and puts your hand in the hands of the new guy. The new guy picks up your suitcase and leads you to the door. The familiar face starts openly crying, waving and waving as the elevator doors close on you and the new guy.

The new guy drives you to an airport and you follow him, not knowing what else to do. Sometimes you cry, but then the new guy tries to make you smile, so you grin back, wanting to “get along.” You board a plane. The flight is long. You sleep a lot, wanting to mentally escape from the situation.
Hours later, the plane touches down. The new guy is very excited and leads you into the airport where dozens of people are there to greet you. Light bulbs flash as your photo is taken again and again. The new guy takes you to another guy who hugs you. Who is this one? You smile at him. Then you are taken to another man who pats your back and kisses your cheek. Then yet another fellow gives you a big hug and messes your hair. Finally, some-one (which guy is this?) pulls you into his arms with the biggest hug you’ve ever had. He kisses you all over your cheeks and croons to you in some language you’ve never heard before.

He leads you to a car and drives you to another location. Everything here looks different. The climate is not what you’re used to. The smells are strange. Nothing tastes familiar, except for the black coffee. You wonder if someone told him that you like your coffee black. You find it nearly impossible to sleep. Sometimes you lie in bed for hours, staring into the blackness, furious with your husband for leaving you, yet aching from the loss. The new guy checks on you. He seems concerned and tries to comfort you with soft words and a mug of warm milk. You turn away, pretending to go to asleep.

People come to the house. You can feel the anxiety start to bubble over as you look into the faces of all the new people. You tightly grasp the new guy’s hand. He pulls you closer. People smile and nudge one other, marveling at how quickly you’ve fallen in love. Strangers reach for you, wanting to be a part of the happiness. Each time a man hugs you, you wonder if he will be the one to take you away. Just in case, you keep your suitcase packed and ready. Although the man at this house is nice and you’re hanging on for dear life, you’ve learned from experience that men come and go, so you just wait in expectation for the next one to come along.

Each morning, the new guy hands you a cup of coffee and looks at you expectantly. A couple of times the pain and anger for your husband is so great that you lash out, sending hot coffee across the room, causing the new guy to yelp in pain. He just looks at you, bewildered. But most of the time you calmly take the cup. You give him a smile. And wait. And wait. And wait.

How would each of us handle all these changes? How would this impact us for the rest of our lives?


©2006-8 Cynthia Hockman-Chupp. Cynthia is an adoptive parent, teacher, and writer who has learned the most about parenting from her children. She operates a website with Heidi Louella, another adoptive parent and teacher, called www.a4everfamily.org with great information for families that are dealing with the challenges of attachment in young children. Her analogy is courtesy of Dr. Kali Miller, an attachment therapist.
This article was originally published in Adoption Parenting: Creating a Toolbox, Building Connections published by EMK Press. This 520 page parenting book is a tapestry of contributions from over 100 adoptive parents, adoption experts, birth parents, and parents who have become experts to parent the children who have come to them. It is available from EMK Press, 16 Mt. Bethel Road, #216, Warren, NJ 07059 732-469-7544 • 732-469-7861 fax • www.emkpress.com

Betty

Thank you all for praying for my cousin Betty and her family. Sorry for the delay in posting. Betty went to be with the Lord soon after she became ill. On Mother's Day we gathered to celebrate her life and to grieve her passing.
I come from a large family. Betty's dad is the oldest of 12 and my dad happens to be #9. And so Betty was closer to my parents age and her kids are closer to my age. In fact, I was born 3 days after Harold and Betty's wedding. They would have been married 40 years in June.

I grew up attending church with Betty and Harold and their family and I would say that they taught me many things about walking with Jesus just through their example. When i was 16 we got a flier at church for a summer mission trip. It looked pretty interesting but i had alot of fear about it. When she asked me if i was thinking of going, i made up some excuses about money and who knows what. Betty said to me "Do you have something better to do?" She has a way of saying it like it is and so she really encouraged me to seriously think and pray about it. That summer was an amazing blessing to me and the beginning of a stirring in my heart for mission work.

I think that Betty was the first person at church that i told about our adoption. I just couldn't wait to tell someone and there she was. She was so excited! She had actually done some volunteer work with Imagine - hand delivering documents to the embassy in Ottawa. I know she prayed for us and was always interested in our 'next steps' and where we were in line.

Betty was an amazing Mother, Grandmother, prayer warrior, friend. And man did she know her Scriptures. What an amazing legacy she leaves. LIfe is short, you just don't know what God's plan is for your life. Live life to the fullest, be thankful for what you have and those who are in your life.


Here is a clip from the local news
http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20110508/Albrecht2011-05-08/20110508/?hub=TorontoNewHome

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Please Pray

Could you all please pray for my cousin Betty. She is hospital in very serious condition. Pray for her husband, thier 3 kids and spouces and 9 grandkids.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess:

*This has been a discouraging week adoption wise. 2 really good friends are both really struggling with their adoptions. One is just so close – so close to picking up their sweet boy. Red tape just keeps getting in the way. It seems like petty, easy things that just make you shake your head – are keeping them from hoping on a plane. My other really good friends just do not know if their adoption will ever happen. Delay after delay has had them at a standstill for a long time (since last summer) and now there is 3 more months of not knowing. And us…I still don’t know where our file is at but was told ‘we are looking into it’. If you don’t mind, say a prayer for all of us as some days, one more thing is just too much to deal with.

*That I feel a bit like Jekyll/Hyde. One post is positive and exciting and upbeat and then bam. More crap. Will life ever be normal again? How I look forward to the day that our adoption is done and final and we can move on to a new kind of crazy – parenthood!

*We all need some good news.

*I got up and watched the wedding today at 3:00am. By ‘up’ I mean that I was awake but still in bed. :)

*I did get a bit teary. Weddings always make me cry. It was a beautiful wedding!!!

*Retail therapy is in my future.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Confession Friday (on Saturday)

I confess:


*we are getting close to the top of the list. seriously close. nauseously close. computer stalking close. freaky person close. The last referral that was announced - their original number was 55 and ours is 62. That is close. According to my spreadsheet, my multi-coloured and 'can't live without' spreadsheet - there are only 3 other people ahead of us that are stating 'either' gender, the rest want girls...that means we are closer than close. and its freaking me out. I am freaked out because our paperwork is still not done. At this point i don't really know where it is or how longer it will be there, where ever it is... The new agency took over our files this week and so i am trying to give them a grace period before i go crazy and demand some more info.... We are close. Close to insanity for sure. The reality is that we could be 'close' for a very long time.... You know me, i try to be realistic but its so hard not to try to put a time line on these things. IF we got a referral by June (my birthday) and it takes 6 months or so for the rest of the paper work...we could be traveling around Christmas time... That is a huge IF and i really try not to go there as there is no possible formula to try to figure out how long will take... pray for my sanity. Could we really have our baby home this year???? Mike is as cool as a cucumber...we refuses to get excited until we have our referral...I wish we could trade places for a week or a day... That would be a nice change.


*yesterday we heard the news that Sue Hayhow and Rick Hayhow have both been arrested and charged with fraud. I thought i would feel differently. I thought i would feel relieved and happy to hear this news. I am glad that they will be held accountable for their actions. I am actually surprised that Sue was in the country as it was rumoured that she was living in Africa. I was surprised at how raw my emotions still are after all this time. It is definitely a part of my life that hasn't completely healed yet - maybe it never will. It has really stirred up all the emotion of that time - when i was grieving the loss of a child and our adoption. It has become a part of our adoption story that i would like to forget about and 'skip over'. But it was/is a real part but not one i want to focus on. Here is a link to the news and our friends being interviewed - a happy ending with pic's of their beautiful son:http://swo.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20110408/imagine-adoption-charges-110407/20110408/?hub=SWOHome


*i have alot of work to get done before we have people in for dinner tonight...and I am feeling very lazy. Maybe i need some stronger coffee to get me through. Or maybe we will order pizza...


*blogger is making me angry!!!!! its not saving right and i am getting frustrated!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Another Room Finished!

We have now finished our spare bedroom. It is now ready for occupancy, so if you are planning to come to Ontario (hint hint Karen), please do!!!

We (Mike) re-did the dry wall, added crown moulding, painted everything - including the floors and installed a new ceiling fan/light fixture.

We have the after's first because our computer is very slow today. Enjoy!!!


The befores. Ugh - ugly green wall paper on one wall, ugly grey paint on the other walls. Gaps in dry wall, dirty and stained floor. Good bye to the dingy's!!!



Thanks Mike for all your hard work!!! You are the best! Now, on to our next project :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess:

*as I wrote that last post, I was very excited about where we are and how close we are to a referral

*after I read the last post, I got depressed at how long we still have before we have our child home

*it’s been a tough week. Since the bankruptcy happened I have tried very hard not to get caught up emotionally in what is going on the boards and the latest drama. There is always ‘something’ and to save my sanity I usually take it all with a grain of salt until I see some concrete proof that it might be true. I was avoiding the latest news in hopes that it was just another rumour. For those not in the adoption world, we are going to be faced with much longer wait times… That’s all I am going to say about it. It adds more time to our time line and causes children to have longer time in institutional care. It’s sad and hopefully things can be turned around.

*that after the latest news that wait times are only going to increase I really wondered if we should continue with this adoption. If we weren’t so ‘close’ to a referral, I think we would be seriously considering our options


*that our child is worth waiting for and some day we will look back at this time and be grateful for the path that lead us to our child.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Next Steps

So many of you family and friends are excited to see us getting closer to the top of the list! Your encouragement and excitement and support is so wonderful!!! I thought i might explain the 'rest' of this journey to you all so it doesn't get too complicated. Even though we are getting 'closer', we still have a long way to go:

1. Paper chase - well, our homestudy update is complete and we have filled out all the necessary paperwork. Right now our homestudy is at the Ontario Ministry of Family and Children - getting approved. We need to be approved by them to adopt - again. They did this already - 2 years ago, so it should be a rubber stamp, we hope. It should take about 6 weeks and its already been there for one week. After that our file or dossier needs to be notarized and authenticated - it travels from Ottawa to Toronto and then back to Cambridge. That takes about 3 weeks. During this time we are not eligible for a referral - booo - but that's ok because we probably aren't that close anyway. Once this is all done it goes to Ethiopia and sits and waits on our referral.

2. The Referral - we get matched with an adoptable child!!! Our request is either gender (Mike is sure its a girl and I am sure its a boy - who will win???) under 24 months. We will get 'the call' from our agency and they will send us photos, medical info and back ground info on this child. We then have to have our Dr. check it out and our Adoption Practitioner check it out. We then accept or reject this referral. Usually referrals are rejected due to physical/illness issues. If we accept, then we move on. This acceptance process can take a few days depending on when you can get appointments with Dr's and the AP.

3. Court - once we have accepted the referral, the agency applies for us to get a court date. It usually takes about a month to hear when your court date will be - and it can be any where from a month to 3 months till you get that date.

4. Appear in court. We will then travel to Ethiopia to appear in court!! When we get there, we will travel to the orphanage to see our baby. We will get to observe him/her - but not touch or take photos. Then, a few days later we appear before a judge, who will ask us a few questions and hopefully make us parents. After the successful court date, our child will be moved to our agency's baby house - then we will get to visit the baby once - for a few hours. At this point we will be able to hold and cuddle and take pictures of our wee one. Then my heart gets ripped out and we come home... We actually hope to do some sight seeing and major shopping on this trip as we will be childless and able to travel easier. This trip might be 10 or so days.

5. Wait. Then we wait on a new Ethiopian birth certificate with our child's new last name, and then the visa wait. Right now the visa wait is taking anywhere from 2 weeks to 16 weeks. Yes, that's right 16 weeks.

6. Visa is in! When we get the news that the visa is in - we catch the next flight to Ethiopia. That's right - the very next flight - hopefully that same day :) well, soon after anyway. We go to Ethiopia and bring home our child. We are hoping that this will be a quick trip - probably 5-7 days. We will probably visit the child on the first day there - hang out and let him/her get used to us. The next day they child usually comes into your care. Sometimes, it might take longer if it seems the transition might not be smooth.

So, that is what is still in store for us. Even if we get a referral this year...we might not have the baby home this year. It could happen - but we know not to count on what should happen in this process. It is exciting to get closer to the 'top' of the list and this 10 week wait till our paperwork is in order is bugging me. I mean, we started in August to get this stuff together, it seems like its taking forever... But i have a feeling that once its all done we will get a referral soon after.

ps. - the above information is not binding or for sure - its what i understand of the process and what i have experienced and know to be mostly true :)

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Moving on up

There were 3 referrals announced this week!!!! That is a 3 place jump closer to the top for us. It is starting to get exciting again! I was just sitting in the baby's room thinking of things to be done and getting excited again. Oh my, can it be? Will it soon be our turn???

Friday, February 18, 2011

Confession Friday

I Confess that i have the day off today and have zero motivation to get anything done. Last week I was a busy bee and today i would love to curl up on the couch with a good book.

I Confess that we got invited to a wedding next month and i have absolutely nothing to wear. I do not own a dress that will work in the winter.

I Confess that i dread looking for the dress. Luckily my 15 year old niece will be shopping with me. At least we will get something kind of 'cool' or in style. Hopefully... Worse than the dress will be finding shoes for my wide feet.

I Confess that last Friday we thought we had all our paperwork together and so we quickly mailed it off to our agency. Monday morning we received a new form that must be signed and notarized... It just never ends.

I Confess that its a beautiful 'spring' day here - the sun is shining and the snow is melting. All we have now is that yucky, dirty brown snow and so i hope it snows again. The world is so much prettier when the snow is clean and white.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Confession Friday

I confess that its Friday and i have the day off!! Beautiful bliss!! I have next Friday off too - i could learn to like this :)

I confess that my excitement for today has included cleaning and laundry and cooking a real dinner instead of 'something fast' and possibly some ironing - exciting stuff. Mike came home at noon and will do some painting this afternoon!

I confess that it is exciting to get these things done in the day time instead of in the evening after work

I confess that i should have thought about how big our house is when we bought it. I thought a big house would be great - it is - until you have to clean it.

I confess that i went to aquafit this week for the first time in many years. It was good but my calves are still paying me back.

I confess that i feel so bad for Ruth and the other families who did not pass court today. Things change and new 'rules' happen and all of a sudden it's a red tape nightmare.

I confess that we got the last piece of paper we need for our update. It is being sent off to Imagine today!!

I confess that this whole merger thing has still got me anxious but its another lesson in 'going with the flow' cause we just don't have a choice. More info will be nice to set us all at ease.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Reality Check

Funny how just when i am starting to feel positive about the adoption, that you get a reality check. Yesterday we found out that Imagine is merging with an existing adoption agency in Ontario. Hmmm, interesting. They say that things shouldn't change and that it should all be good. Hmmm, interesting.
So many things run through my head.
How can a small agency just take on so many new clients and serve us all well? I am sure the existing clients aren't too pleased, I know I wouldn't be.
Will this make a difference in our adoption? Maybe things will be more efficient. Maybe things will be less efficient. Maybe, maybe, maybe. It just goes to prove that we have no control over this whole process. That is the most frustrating thing to me. We have absolutely no control over what is happening in our lives. So many people make decisions that effect us and we have to deal with it.
I do feel bad for the Imagine employees. They will be let go and i am guessing the new agency will need to hire more folks to deal with all of our files. But will these people have experience with E?? I am really hoping that our file can be renewed and sent off to E before the change over happens. It would be even better to get our referral before the change over happens but that is a bit overly optimistic.
Sheesh - i am just a bit stunned by all of this. You just have to wonder what will come next. Change is always hard - no doubt about it. But like i said earlier- I just feel so helpless in this whole thing - just along for the ride. Hopefully those making these choices are making good ones for all involved... I do realized that we need to be grateful that our adoption is still continuing at all after the whole bankruptcy thing.
When we started this crazy ride i had no idea how many twists and turns we would take. Not sure how many more I can handle. I am really hoping that this new change will turn out to be a good one and nothing will be interrupted and all will continue to move along as planned. Please let it be so.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

the upswing

yep - its true. I feel like i am on the 'upswing'. We have seen some movement again with a few referrals. Congrats to Tammy and Sid and big sister Josina!! Its great to see our name climbing higher to the top of the list!

We met with our AP this week to sign off on our Home study update. Now all we are waiting on is our HIV tests. They should be in by this week and then this paper scramble will be done...for now. I know its never really ever done...

It was great to have dinner this week with a friend who has just returned from court. What a great time we had looking at pictures of her son and imaging what it will be like for us to take that trip! What a treasure to learn from others who have experienced what we will experience! It was very reassuring to me- yes we can do this- yes we can see our baby and then get on a plane and come home. She told me it was easier leaving knowing how well they were being taken care of and the very apparent love they staff have for the kids. Those things make it easier but its still so very hard. All of a sudden it was 10:30 - time flies when you have so much in common!

It's starting to feel like we could get our referral 'any time'. My friend reminded me that they were at #15 when they got theirs and so you just never know. This is a new kind of crazy that we are entering. Can it really be happening after all this time? Hard to believe. Could this really be 'the year'? Hard to believe. Is there actually going to be a kid in that dusty crib we have had for sooo long? Its hard to believe - but we do believe and its getting exciting again. It's that sick to your stomach kind of exciting... Mike's dream really is becoming real to me and so i believe...

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Confession Tuesday?

I see from my blogging friends that confession is good for the soul. Since i actually feel like posting, I am sure you won't mind that i am confessing on a Tuesday and not on Friday :) Here goes:

I confess (0n a Tuesday) that:

*we didn't go to the 'adoption people' get together in Cambridge. In fact we haven't gone to one yet. I want to meet you folks and yet i just find it too hard until we have our kid to take with us. I know lots of people are encouraged when they go, but i think we will wait. We did however attend the screening of "Operation Babylift". This was a movie about orphans that were airlifted from Vietnam at the end of the war and then adopted to American and Canadian families.

*i confess that both Mike and I cried at different times during the movie -sorry Mike but you are confessing here too :) Not only did the film chronicle the lives of adoptees but also an adoptee and his wife as they adopted from Vietnam. It is a very powerful film and i could definitely relate to their journey.

*i confess that it surprised me to see Mike's post about his dream. I loved that! He rarely remembers his dreams - me, i have crazy dreams all the time and we should be so lucky that none of them 'come true'. I am counting on his dream coming true. He is convinced that we are getting a girl...

*i confess the 'hard stuff' is still hard but i am learning (again and again and again) that all i can do is pray.

*i confess that for a while i didn't believe that praying made a difference. I questioned...a lot. Now i know that my faith has been stretched and strengthened. I am learning that when all i can do is pray - that it's enough.

*i confess that the paper work is almost done. For some reason it has seemed hard to get it together. Could be that i was just plan mad that we had to re-do it in the first place.

*i confess that i was jealous when Kendra posted that it was easy to get her update done...

*i confess that as soon (literally seconds) as our AP walked out of our house at our last home visit, i found the biggest dust bunny known to man.

*i confess that this year at work i was able to carry over 2 weeks of vacation. i figured it would be good to have extra for when we travel. But, man could i use a holiday!!!

*i confess that L getting a referral was the second highlight of last week!

*the first highlight was my friend A calling to say they have 'a match'!!! So exciting. Can't wait to hear more and to meet your little man!!!!!

*i confess that the highlight of this week was seeing the photos of B&A and sweet baby A!!!! that made my heart happy - congrats guys

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Do dreams come true?

We are still alive! We have not been totally buried by the latest batch of paperwork, but sometimes it seems that way! I (Mike) tried to sleep in today, but I had the most incredible dream and couldn't get back to sleep. It's my first "daddy dream", and I needed to share it with someone! (Brenda is still sleeping, and I know better than to wake her up!). So here's how the dream unfolded: We were at some sort of family function, not sure who's family, I didn't really recognize anyone. We were in a room with a bed, TV, and some of our stuff, maybe we were staying over? Brenda was reading a book and playing with a cute little African girl, who looked to be about 2yrs. old. She was perfect, big beautiful eyes, winning smile, and crazy curly hair (of which I am jealous!). Then she came over to where I was sitting in a rocking chair watching a movie or something on the TV. She climbed up into my lap, and settled in all warm and cuddly while I rocked back and forth. She turned to me after a while and said "faster!", that's when I knew she was our child (only on of my kids would not be satisfied with rocking slowly!). Later we were down the hallway, and everyone was getting food from the kitchen. Wouldn't you know, our little girl had gotten grandma to get her some ice cream! She was then leading grandma down the hall to a quieter room to "hide-out" while they spoiled their dinner! So, that was it, at that point I woke up and haven't been able to get that dream out of my head. I sure hope this one comes true!