July 31, 2013

God's Plan - Wait and I will give you the best!!

We have been on our adoption journey for nearly two years now...One year, eleven months, two weeks and two days to be exact.  Well, since we turned in our initial application, much longer if you count the months of prayer and research prior to that.

It has been several months since I have updated our WONDERFUL adoption journey.  So here we go with the latest update!!!!

I am going to start in April 2013 which is the last time I updated this blog.

In April - we were Number 4 on the list.  Our adoption agency releases new referrals from Thailand every quarter and June will be the next referral month.  Previous quarters have had anywhere from 5-10 referrals - so we were looking forward to seeing our little girls picture sometime in June.

In May - Continued working on our paperwork for our homestudy update which including all our doctors appointments and new forms.

In June - We were so excited for June updates and I think I called Shana and Jessica (from Holt) at least 2-3 times a week to see if referrals came.  Every week there were different reason for delays - training in Thailand, new employees coming on board, vacations of social workers in Thailand.....Every week seemed like another reason for delays....Then messages from Holt were they are expecting the June referrals to push into July...REALLY??? - June referrals in July - UGGG...

In July - I sent all documents for our homestudy update to Karen (LSS social worker) and we had our home visit on a Monday morning before going into work.  Our current I-800 (Immigration paperwork) expires at the end of August.  (It is only good for 18 months)  I was so excited to show Karen our little girls bedroom, her closet already full of clothes and the new playroom we have for her and Joshua - which includes a kitchen and doll house. In July, I also finished the initial photo album to send to our baby girl.  On July 18th, I finally received information from Jessica on the "referral packet" that was coming to Holt from Thailand.  She said the package would be in Holt's hands early the next week and families would be contacted after their in house reviews which usually take 2-3 days.  So by the end week - Lisa was not a very patient person.

I finally got word.......officially.......on Monday that Holt had received 4 referrals last week and 3 families are currently reviewing their files. (One was a sibling group)......and we were not one of the families...  

I have to admit I was sad, I cried, I was even a little mad and somewhat discouraged.

Why does this have to take so long???  
Where is my little girl?? 
Why were we not one of the families??
When will our time come??
Why me??

I know God is calling us and Thailand was one of the ONLY countries we qualified for (even waiting child lists - too old, not married long enough and travel restrictions).

Although, there are now at LEAST 4 new orphans in this world that have moms and dads to call them their own.  I am happy for these families and can't wait to see pictures and hear about these beautiful children.

Romans 8-28 has came into my mind several times over the past few days.  I have always LOVED that verse - it has always been one of my favorite.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

I know that is true.... I love God, I have Faith and I know my baby girl is out there somewhere waiting for us.  She is just not ready to come home yet.  I wait and wait and the best is yet to come.  I know she is worth the wait!!!

God's answer to us "Wait and I will give you the best"

So here I am waiting "as patiently as I can" for September referrals to come in.....

Maybe the next blog post will have a picture of the newest member of the Levi family.....

I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry. Psalms 40:1

April 9, 2013

We are NOW Number 4!!!


After 1 year, 7 months, 3 weeks and 4 days we are finally down to NUMBER 4!!

If has been SEVERAL months since I updated this blog - so I will try to give some updates now - although the biggest update is WE ARE NOW NUMBER 4!!

If is very likely looking like a June referral for us - which would have us traveling to Thailand to pick our little girl up and bring her home sometime next Dec/Jan/Feb timeframe.  We will be traveling to "balmy" Thailand during DC's winter.

New Thailand dossier requirement - Psychologist Interview
Since we originally submitted our dossier in Mar 2012 there has been an update to the Thailand requirement.  We are now required to submit a letter from a Psychologist saying "Individual appears to be in good mental health and is mentally stable.  Individual is capable of successfully providing for adopted children."

You would think the 20 some page homestudy document and numerous meetings with the liscenced social worker would be good enough for that, but NO Thailand needs a letter from an actual Psychologist.  I have been on my search for psychologists who could evaluate Chris and I to provide such a letter.  Several said it would require 6-8 months of appointments and testing until I finally found one that would do with just one 2-hour meeting and the fee is only $500.  Much better than the alternatives.  Chris and I have filled out all the required forms for meeting with the Prince William Family Counseling office (about 25 pages of our life story) and we meet with them on April 18th.  Hopefully, our meeting will go well and we will get this new requirement to be added to our dossier paperwork.

Updated Homestudy/I-800 Update Paperwork 
We are also in the process of updating our homestudy to get an extention on our I-800 form.  The I-800 is only good for 18 months and ours will expire in August 2013, so we need to get re-fingerprinted and an update for the homestudy before then.

There have also been some Virginia state laws for adoption that have changed since our initial homestudy, so we will need to accomplish those also.
So far the homestudy forms we need to complete for the update are:
* The Virginia child abuse clearance update
* Medical updates for four of us (Chris, Lisa, Christopher and Joshua) which includes new TB tests, and statements saying we are all "free from communicable and contagious diseases", in "sufficiently good health that the placement of a child will not jeopardize the health/safety of child or self"
* Updated confidentiality statements
*Authorization to release homestudy
*Auto Insurance
* Financial Forms (paystubs and tax returns)
* Another adoption training Course

AND It is all
 Worth it
Why Wouldn't I???
WHY Wouldn't I
I never tire of hearing others that are being blessed with adopting or seeing adopted children on friends blogs or in person.  Adoption has blessed so many people that I know and I am so humbled that GOD has chosen us to be on this same path for our family and our little girl.  I don't know how many tears (mostly happy) I have shed over the past few months with news of friends starting adoption paperwork, families who just brought home their new children or pictures of children who NEED parents.

One of my favorite songs now is "Why Wouldn't I" by Peter Eide


He does does a great job of describing his family's desire to adopt and what a blessing it's been to all of them. I love the title of his new song -- Why Wouldn't I? Instead of wondering if YOU should adopt or why YOU should adopt, maybe we should be asking the question why shouldn't we?