When I last wrote, we had our immigration approval and were starting a 2-3 week process of getting documents notarized and authenticated. The process in actuality took closer to 4 weeks... another bump in the road. The courier that Lifeline uses to carry our documents somewhere (I think to the Chinese Embassy, maybe?) went on a week long vacation! So, our documents sat and sat and sat, waiting for her to return. This is apparently not a common thing for her to be gone that long as there is no backup plan. That may sound a little crazy to not have a plan B but I totally understand because of the nature of our documents.... they basically contain every detail of our life... more than enough that someone would need to steal an identity... so they have to fully trust whose hands they are allowed to fall into....
But the good news is that it is finished! Yea! The kind of crazy news is that because of this backup of documents at this lady's office, there will be 15!!!! Lifeline families logged in on the same day in china! What does that mean? There may not be enough babies to go around the first time! I have mentally prepared myself that we may not see her face for a couple of months and then it will be a pleasant surprise if we do. God honestly has filled me with such peace about waiting longer. When we started this process, Henry was still a baby... crawling a little bit but mainly in a pumpkin seat. Now he is a BUSY (although sweet as can be) 17 month old!! God has just reassured me that "time is on our side"... the older and more independent Henry gets, will only benefit his and our transition to a new sibling. The other plus to so many families is that we may have some fun traveling buddies. I'm holding out hope to be traveling with at least one of my red thread gals!
The next step is my social worker telling us we are DTC (Dossier to China) which she is telling me will happen on monday! Then we wait to hear back from China for a LID (Log In Date-- don't you love all these abbreviations? I even get confused) That should come about 2-3 weeks after we are DTC. And THEN we wait to get matched with a baby!
A kind of cool aside.... Lifeline is one of a few agencies in the US that was recently approved to have an orphanage that is like there own. They don't run it but they are allowed to send mission trips over there. In fact, a medical team from Children's is there right now. It is a special needs orphanage with 60 children and they will be trying to adopt out all of those kids as their paperwork gets ready and then more kids will come into the system .... a continual cycle into lifeline families. It is SUPER cool on so many levels. First, to think that we could get a referral who has already been seen by the children's doctor is CRAZY! She could know our baby already!!! Then to be able to go back there for years to come as a family and do ministry is a dream come true. And to think that in our coffee group, a lot of our little girls could be together right now only to come home and still be friends!! This is really something only God could orchestrate. We could still get matched from the regular Special Needs list and are totally open to either choice.
Because of this new option, we had a little emotional roller coaster ride this week. We were all able to go ahead and see photos of children who will be available soon and there was one little girl who just captured a spot in our hearts. I won't say that I thought "she is the one!" but I was definitely taken by her and praying "Lord, is she ours?" We put our name on a wait list for her and thought that's we'd just see if the timing all worked out. On wednesday, out of the blue, our agency got an e-mail from the orphanage director with no explanation other than " X is no longer available for international adoption." It made me really sad when I read that.... I know she was never mine to begin with and I had tried to guard my heart but it is hard when you see a sweet face that needs a mommy and a daddy and you let your imagination begin to wander.... I think it was also hard because I has sinus surgery that morning, was hurting and high on Lortab and was trying my hardest not to cry so my nose wouldn't get all stuffy..... which the harder you try not to, then the harder the tears come... and then my nose was bleeding everywhere and I couldn't blow it or wipe well.... not a pretty sight! But pretty funny to me looking back at it now. God's timing is perfect and I'm glad He allowed me to laugh at myself.
I feel TOTAL peace now that God shut that door and can't wait to see what door He opens next! I'll wait to update again when we had a LID to let you know that we are "officially" waiting for a referral. Thanks for hanging in on this long journey!