Saturday, February 4, 2017

Update.

I haven't updated in a while so I figured it was about time I did.

School seems to be going pretty well for our girl.  We got her report card last month and it was fun to learn a few things about our lady.  For one, it doesn't look like she has any major academic holes.  We've wondered about this mostly because as we get ready for her to go to school out here next year, we have wondered if she would have other issues with her schooling that we were going to need to address minus the whole learning English for the first time thing, which of course will be huge.  Other than that, it sounds like she leans towards liking math and science a bit more than the language arts.  P.E. seems to be right up her alley along with anything that involves games, including computers.  And we were once again told about how she loves to sing, which we have heard over and over.

We also learned her size which is pretty typical for her age.  In fact, she is just about the same height and weight as my nephew Owen, who is 6 months younger but in the same grade.

EVERY LITTLE TID BIT WE LEARN IS A GIFT.

And you guys, she has seen a picture of us.  We still don't have a clue what she is thinking, feeling or how she reacted to it all, but still.  WOW.

Now about all the nitty gritty process stuff.

Back in December we received our Article 5, which is basically the US saying that she can immigrate to the states.  And with all the drama that is going on in our country with immigration stuff right now, we are just glad to have that done.

Now we are waiting for her paperwork (which is back in Burundi) to be readied for court.  Once it is our court date will be scheduled.  Once the court date happens we wait for the judge to sign off on it.  Once the judge signs off on it, there is a 30 day mandated wait.  Once that is over, the last push of getting her passport ready and all that is done so that we can go get her and bring her into our family.

So, it could be just a couple more months or well, who knows how long.  But we are inching closer.

If we could ask for some prayers it would specifically be that we get the court date this month.  So, we need those papers readied.  Also, pray for strength for us.  We are weary.  Not only has it been such a long process but we were dealt a huge emotional blow this last month when Anthony and I had to cancel our scheduled visit to meet her at the last minute because of visa issues.  It was devastating for us.

So pray for us.  Pray for her.  We'll take whatever you've got.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

A new school!

While our papers keep getting pushed around, I have a cool bit of news to share.

We have been given the amazing opportunity to send our little lady to a Montessori school in Bujumbura so that she can begin learning English!  This is so very exciting.  Not only will she begin to learn a little English (or at least get used to hearing it) which is a bonus we never anticipated but we may also get a better picture as to where she is at educationally, which is such a gift.  Not to mention she will be eating a meal there which we are hoping will be good for her little body.

She has already started the new school, which also means that she must know that she is being adopted by a family in the US.  You guys, this gives me all sorts of feelings.  I don't know that she knows about us specifically (our lawyer will at some point be meeting with her and showing her our picture and telling her about us), but to know that she knows that she is going to be adopted...

I wonder how she feels about it.

Is she scared?

Excited?

Indifferent?

What would that be like to be almost 7 and find out that you are moving across the world to become a part of a family that you have never met?

Like I said, all sorts of feelings.

While we wait to hear how she is taking that news, we are praying that she is enjoying her new school and that God is holding her little heart and mind as she faces these major changes in her sweet little life.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

FINALLY.

Yesterday we received our referral! Okay, so it was all in French and isn't the translated version that we can actually sign and accept BUT it has finally been signed and stamped and signed and stamped and survived power outages and job changes and every freaking delay...and it is done. 

With the help of a french friend and Google translate, I was able to get the gist as to what the documents say without the official translation. We learned things like...

  • her given birthday
  • her full name
  • a few important dates and places

And that's about it really.

But we also got to see our names in those documents.  And words like NON-OBJECTION, which are some of the most beautiful words you can hear in the adoption world.  Seriously.

It was an awesome day.  We took the kids out to dinner to celebrate and so enjoyed the love and celebration expressed to us by our family and friends...

BUT.

As it always is in adoption, there is always bitter mixed in with the sweet.  And as I read through the referral and saw words that explained a little of my girl's story, my heart broke.  She has already been through so much in her little life and my heart hurts for her...

So, what's next?

Forms and waiting.  Yep.  But it's okay because this is movement waiting, not no movement waiting and I can handle this.  Or at least handle it better.  I am filling out forms again for things like immigrant services and all sorts of gloriously boring forms that bring us closer and closer to our girl.  And I LOVE filling each one of them out.

But if you don't mind my asking, we continue to covet some serious prayer.  Here are my two biggest requests...

  • No more delays.  Please pray that this begins to move along smoothly for us.  It has been such a rocky road.  We sure would love a little good luck.
  • And most importantly, pray that she wants a family.  She has loss in her life.  Every orphan does.  Pray that she wants a family and that we are able to answer this hope for her.  We will be tearing her away from her culture and home and friends and everything familiar.  We will bring more loss.  But we will also offer so much and we just pray that she already wants that.

Okay.  That was a good update.  Let's have more like that.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Deep sigh.

I haven't posted in forever.  There just hasn't really been anything to say.  We just continue to wait wait WAIT.  It's exhausting and heartbreaking. We found out about our match almost five months ago. FIVE MONTHS.  And we know still almost nothing.  We started this process two years ago. TWO YEARS. And we still have know idea when we will be finished.

We have eight pictures.  I waver between not being able to tear my eyes away from them, studying every inch in hopes to learn something about her, to times when I can't look at them at all because she's still such a stranger to me and it tears me up.

We know her age, roughly.  Not a birthday, but we do know that she hasn't turned 7 yet because that would cause all sorts of issues for us since we are approved for a 3 to 6 year old.  And Lord knows we do NOT need any more delays right now.  Or ever again.

We know that we haven't even had a chance to accept the match yet and we know that it will probably be another 8 months once we DO accept it before we can go to get her.  8 MONTHS.  And the clock hasn't even started.

In February, we hoped she would be home at the beginning of this school year.  I desperately wanted to start talking with the school about how to get ready for her.  I was waiting on her birthday to talk to them.  I'm still waiting for that birthday.

By late spring we were hoping she'd be here by Christmas.  Anthony and I talked about how we would structure it to keep her from feeling overwhelmed.  A problem we still wish we had.

Now we are talking about March or April AT THE EARLIEST.

I guess maybe I could just ask you to pray for us.  I mean, pray that there won't be any more delays and that somehow this starts moving smoothly along too, but really we just need prayers for our hearts.  We are tired, stressed, sad, even feeling a little hopeless.  So, yeah, we'll take some prayers.

Here's hoping for a post titled FINALLY soon.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

In the news.

We don't have any new news or info on our little lady, but Burundi has been in the news (okay…only if you really look for it, which I do) this week for something great which seemed worth mentioning.

Keep in mind that Burundi is teeny tiny and poor and so "accomplishments" are a bit harder to come by then in the big ole' wealthy U, S of A.  So when I saw that a couple of Burundi's runners were some of the best in the WORLD, I figured I would share.  Check them out.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

MATCHED.

Let me backtrack…

Two weeks ago on Thursday, we began to hear rumors that the committee that matches families and children in Burundi had met the week before. And the world just seemed to stop for us.  Were we one of the families who had received a referral?  Our agency confirmed they had met and told us that our contact there was trying to find out if we had a referral.

His meeting Friday was rescheduled for the next week.  Longest.  Weekend.  Ever.
He went Tuesday, but the paperwork wasn't ready.
Grenades had been thrown in the city during the week, so he didn't go in on Wednesday.

Thursday, February 18th.

We had been on pins and needles all week.  We were all on edge and our hearts were in our throats.  We were barely able to focus on anything.  I was obsessively checking my email.  Like, ever 2 minutes.  We were just so so ready.

I had some things to do at our other house, so I had grabbed my dear friend Carla and dragged her along with me.  We ran our errands and grabbed a cup of coffee.  As we were walking out of Starbucks, my phone chimed from a new email coming in.  (I had set it up to do that during my obsessive checking.)  It was from our agency.

Hi Leslee,

I have some good news to share but I don't have a lot of details. Is there a good time we could talk on the phone today? :)

I was standing in the middle of the parking lot shaking.  I knew it.  What else could it be?  I shot her a quick email saying I could talk right then. We got in the car and I started to pull out of my spot when Carla started insisting that I call right that second.

Somehow I didn't wreck the car and Carla and I drove around crying and shaking and talking to the agency. We had been matched.  MATCHED.  We were only given her name and age, but we didn't really care.  MATCHED.

Anthony was with a client and I needed to go pick Matthias up from preschool, so I took Carla home (by the way, she was the perfect person for me to receive that call with me and I can't imagine receiving it alone) and headed to the preschool to try and FaceTime Anthony during his 10 minute break between clients and before I had to get Matthias.

He picked up the 3rd try.


We both just cried and laughed and stared at each other.  And then had to hang up after only 2 minutes.  But we had made plans to check the kids out from school as soon as he was done with his next client and tell them all together.

And they were awesome.  And we celebrated with some ice cream.


Because this is actually going to happen.  We are really going to have one more child.  And did I mention that she is six?!  Because she is.  She is six.

We don't have any pictures yet, or really any other information.  (I've been obsessively checking my email once again as we wait for that.) But I've connected with another mom who is over in Africa right now getting her twins that lived at the same shelter and have been at least learning a little of what life is like there for my girl.  Because you guys, we are MATCHED.  And we are still flying high.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Sometimes we cry.

I was just trying to tell him about this great bid we had gotten on some work we need done at the other house.  I called his phone, but he didn't pick up.  I waited a little bit and tried again.  Still nothing.  I knew he wasn't with a client so I sent him a text to tell him I was trying to reach him because sometimes he forgets to put his ringer back on.  A few minutes later I tried once more because I knew he only had a small window of time before he was busy again.  Nothing.  So I made lunch for Matthias and sat down to eat with him.

The phone rang and it was Anthony.

"Guess what?"
"What?!"
I told him about the bid.
"Oh."
"Oh?  I thought you'd be more excited."
"I am.  It's just that when I saw you kept trying to reach me, I thought maybe you had heard something about the adoption."

And I could hear in his voice that he was crying.  And I started to cry.  I've done that a lot over the years, but it was the first time I heard him break.  My heart still hurts just thinking about it.

This time last year we registered both Matthias and Lydia for preschool.  We thought for sure she would be home by the end of this year and wanted to make sure she had a spot.  And this week we re-registered Matthias and I didn't even bother to mention her because sometimes to hope is to hurt.

And that's where we are at right now.
And sometimes that makes us cry.