Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I am in a weird spot. The high of the referral is fading slightly, and there is plenty waiting to take up that place in my head. There is the longing to bring our baby home that becomes unbearable at times. There is the worrying about EVERYTHING! Our baby, his health, his location?, his happiness, his ability to adjust, the unknowns of travel, when will we get a court date, how will my other kids do, the need to organize and plan, but what and when, etc, etc. I have fallen down with the flu. I know that stress is not a friend when you are trying to stay healthy.
The holidays were a little surreal. Family and friends are very supportive and excited but I keep hearing "you mean you have to wait even longer now?" Yes. We have to wait longer now, knowing our babies face, name and that he is getting older everyday. We have to wait. What should I be filling my time doing? How can I be most productive and keep my emotions at bay? Just like everyone who has gone before us, I knew this would be the hard wait, but now I feel the weight of it all. Now the wait is real.
We have named our son! We had actually picked out this name very early on - but now we have decided to go with it. His birth names will be middle names (can't share those yet) and his first name will be Amani, which means "peace".
Here are a few holiday photos. We hope that everyone had an amazing holiday and that the new year showers more blessings on everyone!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Yesterday was our big day! I had resigned myself that we would not be hearing anything until after CHI reopened on the 5th of January, and then we get the call!
The kids and I were having a very slow day at home. We had done math and reading and I had taken a break to start some laundry. I was actually having a bunch of odd thoughts like, I need to find the camera and make sure it's charged so that when we do get our call we can take "in the moment photos" like I see on everyone's blogs, so I found the camera. The phone rang, and I didn't make it in time (which happens a lot when we are in the middle of our school day), but I started to wonder if it was Erin. I had never thought that before. I began to wonder if you could be skipped over if they couldn't get ahold of you. Then I sat down at the computer and saw that another CHI family had just received a referral after waiting 32 weeks. I did the math - 8 months - and realized we were still weeks away from hitting that marker. I then thought, if we did get a call, I should look nice and not still be in my pajamas for those "in the moment" photos. I never got that far.
The phone rang and I answered it. It was Erin and my heart began to race! Bret was already on the other line and so I knew for sure. I motioned to my daughter to grab the camera I had just charged and to take photos of me as I got the news, standing there looking very homely, but excited, in my pajamas.
That is when Erin told us that we had a little 10-month-old boy! We were gasping, crying, smiling, the kids were dancing, it was great fun. When we got off of the phone, I sat down at the computer and we saw his sweet little face. He was dressed in pink from head to toe. He has the most amazing, huge brown almond shaped eyes, not any hair to speak of and a gorgeous little face. The happiest part of my day was hearing Bret in awe, teary eyed saying, "he is gorgeous! Isn't he beautiful?"
Of course I read about his situation, and like so many before me, it broke my heart. I hadn't planned for the conflict between being so happy and so sad at the same time. I had forgotten for a moment that our son was coming to us because of great tragic circumstances. My heart was breaking for this baby, his mother, his country. It was hard to reconcile - and I am still working on it - I assume I always will be.
Avonlea and I split the call list and let all of our friends and family know that we had our match. I called Dr. Nancy Curtis, the international adoption pediatrician in our area, and I am hoping to talk to her today. CHI is overnighting the acceptance forms and I am hoping to get them back by Friday so they will go out before the CHI closure for two weeks. The hardest part of the wait has begun. and we couldn't be happier!
Once, again, I am sorry for the unkempt look and the pjs.
Monday, December 15, 2008
When we started out on this journey, I remember trying to prepare myself for the longest possible wait. I had estimated, based on what was happening with our agency at the time, that if I chose Christmas as our "longest" - then I would not be disappointed. I remember telling everyone, "we should have our baby home for the holidays" thinking that it would really be much sooner than that. I was wrong. Here we sit, less than two weeks away from Christmas. We do not have a referral. CHI is closing down for two weeks starting on the 19th. Many families with referrals still don't have court dates - and the court dates they are currently handing out are for February. This is the first big "funk" I have found myself in. Now I find myself hoping that we will not run up against the rainy season again - and that isn't until August!
I was having a hard time as we went last Friday to get our fingerprints done. My husband reminded me that our child will come to us when our child is ready. He said we don't want to lament or rush, because the divine plan is in place. I know he's right - but I feel so antsy!
I need to refocus on taking advantage of this time to get organized and do all the little things that will be much harder when a baby is in the house.
We are waiting for you baby - in your own time.
Friday, December 5, 2008
We are finally getting back to normal around here after our two week run of "The Sound of Music". It was a lot of fun with sold out shows every night - but it was a big time commitment. It had been about five weeks since I had been home for my little ones at bedtime when all was said and done. I thought I'd share some photos.
We are one week away from hitting the "7 months" waiting marker. I bought a crib the other day. We moved our two youngest into the same room so that the baby will have some space. Our kids have never shared a room before, but it is going well. I have a girlfriend who is asking about throwing us a shower. Is this real? I know it is - but it all feels so strange.
Friday, November 14, 2008
We have hit the magic 6 month marker! It is so hard to believe. We started this process a year ago - and we feel that we must be very close to that referral call. I have to say that with four kids at home already, the days have flown by. I can't believe we are here already.
Avonlea and I are completely consumed by "The Sound of Music". We open on Thursday, and for anyone familiar with theater, we are in tech week right now which is very long hours and very draining. We have been getting home every night around 11:30pm. Av is a trooper and is holding up remarkably well.
Jordan was cast in a commercial that was filmed on Wednesday in Carmel. Because of our rehearsals, Daddy was the one who took him. They left a day early and had a mini vacation that included the aquarium, an IMAX movie and room service. They had a really good time.
Olivia has been cast in the play "The Miracle Worker" at the junior college and she is very excited about that. This will be her first speaking role on the big stage.
Lauren has just been cast as Eliza in her high school's production of "My Fair Lady". She will do an amazing job.
I wonder if our new little one will have the performing bug like these guys do? I can't wait to see this new little personality join our family.
Here is a picture of the kids with their cousin, Luna, at the SF Zoo pumpkin patch.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
We had a great Halloween, despite the fact that it was raining here. At least it wasn't very cold, and the kids had a blast. Our local firehouse hosts a free spaghetti dinner downtown and the we walk through the family friendly, not too busy streets near there. We have been so busy this year with "Sound of Music" rehearsals, that we actually carved our pumpkins last night before we went trick-or-treating. This year Av was a black cat, Olivia was a puppy and Jordan was some kind of sports guy. His jersey looked like that of a basketball player - although it said "baseball" on the front. By the time I put a long-sleeve shirt on under it and pants on under his shorts and he had thrown on a guitar cap on his head - he was a bit of a mish-mosh. Here are some of the photos!
Today we are off to rehearsal, an audition for "Miracle Worker" and my nephew's 15th birthday party. Let's pray that everyone can make it until 9pm without any huge meltdowns.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Here is our next song and video! The kids are having so much fun making these and seeing the finished product. Bret and the kids wrote the song together and then Avonlea sang lead and Olivia & Jordy sang back-up. Our old lab Asia even got to make a cameo appearance.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Here is our latest video project. Bret wrote this song and then Lauren learned to play it and the kids each sang their own parts. Our family knows what it is like to wait for that call - and to know that your baby is out there waiting for you. Please share this video with any family that you think would enjoy it. I am so proud of my wonderful children!
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Friday, August 8, 2008
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Friday, June 27, 2008
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Friday, June 13, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Erin from CHI just e-mailed us today to let us know that our dossier is on it's way to Ethiopia! The official wait has begun. The whole thing gets more real every day.
It is such an exciting thought that by next Mother's Day, I will have another precious child in my life!