Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Where we're at...

We've had 2 of the 3 required Home Studies done. The last one is this next Monday, December 3rd. The stages are sort of like this...

1. Complete the Home Study. (The 3 visits, then she has to write it all up) This includes the contract, partial payment. (I'm still waiting for my new Drivers License as Sams Club did not return it to me when last I used it.) I'm still processing my new Passport because while I was in L.A., it was stolen from my trunk by the valet guy. He saw me put it there, then when I went to use it a couple days later, it was not there. I can't get my passport w/o a Drivers License or an "original" birth certificate, so I have to order that from San Diego. I've got to contact California officials to get a certified copy saying that David and I are not pedophiles from another state. I'm still waiting on 3 referrals from non-relatives saying that we are "okay" people to adopt. I know there's more, but I'll look at all that today. I've already started a black file box to stay organized with labeled file folders for each thing I need to get done.

2. Then there is the Dossier. This will complete what we have to do here in this country. That consists of ...

  • Application/ Intention/Petition to adopt

  • Medical Exams

  • Financial Information

  • Copies of Taxes

  • Salary Information

  • Photographs of the prospective parents

  • Birth Certificates

  • Marriage Certificates

  • Divorce Decrees

  • Letters from Employers

  • Proof of Health Insurance

  • Criminal Background Check

  • Several Letters of Reference

  • I-71H

  • Proof of Permanent Address

  • Home study

  • Photos of House

  • Finger Prints (Local and Federal)

  • Fire/Safety Inspection

3. Then there is all of the stuff they have to do in Ethiopia to process it on their side. They have to "approve" everything in my file.

And do you know why it all takes so long and why it is so costly? Because of all the low life jerks that adopt and decided the kids are too hard to deal with or they aren't what they expected and put them on a plane with no passport and "ship" them back to their country. Can you even imagine. One government agency in Ethiopia said this happens a couple times a month. I cannot even fathom doing that. So we, the nice guys, have to pay for their absolutely pathetic sense of stupidness. These poor children are all paying prices being somewhere lacking in everything, when they could be here sooner. It hurts to think about it, so... I breathe, I write, I read, I clean the house, I hug my boys, I dream of how I will do their room, I look at girly things at Target..........I keep moving.

A lot of this paper work needs to be notarized prior to submission. Many people travel to their Secretary of State's office to ensure that the hard work they put in to compiling all of this paperwork is not lost or misplaced. I may do that. I'm 20 minutes from our Capitol. can't say we're not going thru the labor right now of 2 children. Then of course there is the cost of all this. Whenever I see David downstairs and we talk about this adoption or how our future will change, I ask him to please go back upstairs and make some more money. We're gonna need it. With Ethiopian adoption, (which by the way, seems to be the smoothest process I know) you are only asked to travel to the country once when you are picking up your child(ren). Part of the reason why I never really wanted to adopt domestically is because I know that a biological parent can knock on your door and change their mind. We can go see our girls before it's all done, but it's very costly to buy 2 round trip plane tickets AND leave the boys for at least 5 days?? You never know what can happen though because it's an international adoption in the 3rd poorest country in the world. We are flexible and prepared for anything. You have to be.

But can you imagine that plane ride? What is it going to feel like to be on that plane (and I hear it's a reeeeeeally long trip.) As much as I hate the discomfort of flying anywhere, this will be the best plane ride of my life. Especially coming back with our precious little ones. Really...I can't imagine it right now. I'm just trying to do all of the footwork and paperwork right now. And at the same time, not neglect my home life and my children that are!!

Every time Evan sees me on the laptop, he says, "Let me guess. An adoption site, right?" He laughs at me. The girls are going to take Brandon's existing room. Evan will stay in his room. We told Brandon that he can move into his room before they get here if your grades go up. Evan can't wait for Brandon to move to his new room, so Evan can get the drum set into HIS room. I can't wait for all this paperwork to be done, so I can celebrate all of those steps and think about the "Out of Country Steps" that will be probably the slowest and hardest time of all of this. When I speak with my Adoption Agency, and I hate to put this in print cause I'm expecting a long wait like every other adopting parent, but they are saying that it very well could be by May or June. That's only a total of 7 or 8 months from start to finish. I'll hope for that, but I won't count on it. What I really want to avoid is the 2 month "holiday" in Ethiopia that the courts close down for an Ethiopian holiday. That would make me crazy if I missed that deadline, cause that would mean that NOTHING is happening with my files or paperwork. Nope, going to do anything I can to avoid that time, which I think is August & September.

I am so grateful when I think of my friends, family and neighbors that have already expressed excitement and complete support about these girls coming. It matters that they care. I wish my Mom were alive to talk to about this. She would have been unbelievably thrilled. She must hate it that she's missed out on this experience and 2 more grandchildren. Dave (my step dad) laughed with excitement that he's going to be a grandfather to 2 more children. I'm so happy for him. We miss him, but I know he'll come to Denver when they are here. Mum & Dad all the way in Australia have already welcomed them into their beautiful family over the girls are covered! David and I are trying to plan a 20th Wedding Anniversary for us in August 2008 here at the house. My prayer is that the girls are here by then. That would be........well, words wouldn't describe what is in my heart.

Okay, so I've raved on...that's it for now.

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