Thursday, August 20, 2009

whatever it takes to get fingerprinted!

So, the only hurdle left to jump for our i600 paperwork (US Immigration) was our fingerprints. Yep. We had to get our fingerprints done again. Correct me if I'm wrong folks but I believe the reason why we get our kids finger printed when they're young, is if in case God forbid something ever happens to them and the police need to ID them... they use their fingerprints. No matter what age they are. So, help me understand why they can't just load up our fingerprints that are already on every thinkable database in the US Gov't right now from all the background security checks we had to do when we were in the middle of bringing TK home. Not to mention all the paperwork I had to do for military clearances when I was in the Army National Guard. Good grief. Anyhow, we're at their mercy... so we do as they ask.

The appointments that we were sent were scheduled originally during our family vacation. So when Amy attempted to reschedule there's only one little checkbox at the bottom of the schedule form to confirm your appointment, or to request another date and time. So we did that. When we got the second letter back for a fingerprint appointment ... the US Gov't efficiency shows up again! They scheduled it for the following day! ARGHH!!! So, I decided to just drive up to Hartford to see if they'd let me in to plead my case.

So last Tuesday I arrived as soon as they opened the door, talked to the officer in charge and they gave us an appointment at 11am that day.

I went back to get Amy - our wonderful neighbors watched Cutie and TK for us - and we got our fingerprints done. woot! Seems like all we're waiting for now is a court date.

you'll know when we do...

Monday, August 17, 2009

another adventure!

Recent timeline...
Monday July 27 0630 - Amy and I learned that there were some children that had just recently arrived at the CHSFS care center in Ethiopia, so Amy contacted our agency to learn more information about the children - specifically about the little boys that had recently arrived there.
Same Day... 0930 - Our agency responded and let us know that there may be a family that the little boys were connected with already...but would confirm later.
Through that week: Amy and I chatted about the possibility of the adoption happening sooner than expected, but I was quite skeptical because I thought the boys that were there were probably matched already, and that we shouldn't expect a referral until at least winter this year...besides I was pretty consumed with getting things taken care of for our trip to SoulFest 09 ( since we were leaving that next morning.
We returned from SoulFest on Sunday evening 8/2 about 1800
That night (Sun 8/2 @ 2100)- Amy inquired (via email)about the little boys we'd asked about earlier that week. We knew that these little boys had some medical issues, but as we talked a lot about it, and prayed through it, we felt like God would lead us where He wanted us to go. So we waited to hear back...

Monday 8/3 1830 - We received word from our agency that some families are still considering the little boys in question...(honestly I was kinda breathing a little bit of a sigh of relief, because I had NO idea how we would come up with the 9000.00 to accept the referral if we got one this early)... but what do I know. ;) Our agency said they would contact us when there was more info....

Details are a little fuzzy the next couple days... (you'll understand why in a minute)... I think it was Wed (8/5) in the afternoon sometime that Amy called and said that we have the opportunity to review two little boys that would fit our family. Both have some medical issues, but nothing we thought was worth denying based on what we we were given verbal information about two little boys and asked if we would like to review their information and if so... which one would we like to learn about first.

... what a gut wrenching dilemma... so many things running through my heart and mind. Could we take proper care of them with what we have to offer? information is hard to process like that without all the details first... Hard to make a decision like that without knowing and seeing more... I was trying to process what was written on paper, and if it was as potentially difficult as it sounded or not? Could we say "no" to the referral after we saw the story of the little boy we would choose - and then review the next one? Sure, but what were we willing to say "yes" to? What were we going to say "no" to? ... We did a lot of talking and praying then... There were a ton of unknowns to process - but "the river doesn't part until you put you foot in the water first"...

We talked and prayed about that off and on the better part of that day and the following day (Thurs Aug 6) When I arrived home Thursday night we talked more and by 2300 or so decided to- as best as we were able - to “remove from the decision” the stuff we couldn’t control, and make our decision based on both boys being completely healthy. So, we contacted agency to request to review the file of the three year old little boy.
Friday morning 8/7 0900 – We received the pdf file and Amy said she wouldn’t be able to go the whole day without reading it, and I didn’t know if I would be able to review it in detail because of a conference I’d was attending that day…so she wanted me to open the file first. I read his story, saw his picture and began to weep
That morning we were able to schedule an appointment with our Doctor to review his blood work that was included in his referral information. Off and on that day Amy and I discussed the concerns we had about some of the medical issues, but we felt confident based on the Doctor’s review that we could make a wise decision.
Saturday 1000 – We met with our Doctor and gave us some difficult news…. There was nothing in the medical details that would give him any reason to deny confirming his referral, but there was always the unknown stuff that could possibly have long term ramifications.. but no one would be able to tell that for sure. At that point, we were still in a bit of a quandary but felt even stronger that this was our little boy… but we … at least I … didn’t feel quite prepared to handle this now.
Funny thing about how God works… often times I am impatient that God didn’t move quick enough, or when I wanted Him to… this time, I’m wrestling because apparently he’s answering faster than expected. I guess I still have to remember who’s really in control.
So, we talked about him all day Saturday and honestly by Saturday night all we could do was kinda veg out on the “food channel” …
We had a little more peace about it on Sunday morning and were getting more excited about the possibilities and we shared our story/dilemma with a few friends.
I was having a hard time trying to figure out how we’d swing this financially, especially now that our home is empty again and the mortgage company still needs a monthly check… hmmm…
We decided to accept his referral verbally and start working hard to arrange some way to creatively come up with the funds to start the next formal stage of the process… so we looked around the house for stuff to sell… there wasn’t much of anything we aren’t willing to sell these days….
- Sidebar: if your child was sick, or needed something and all you had was your stuff… what would you be willing to sell to get your kid healthy? Yep… we thought of everything.
We’ve got some stuff up on ebay right now too ;)
So… in the last week, some substantial miracles have taken place and God has provided what we need so far.
We received the formal acceptance information and mailed it with our check and a few other checks from friends, family and some children of kids who wanted to help and heard about the need… to rescue our little boy.
From the deepest part of us… we do not have adequate words to describe our appreciation for all of you that stepped up in HUGE ways to help us in this process… we’ve still got some details to work out.. (US Immigration paperwork, and the courts are not in session in Sept in Ethiopia so the soonest that the paperwork could go through the Ethiopian courts would be Mid to late October… then when to travel.. and expenses surrounding that etc…
So we’d appreciate your prayer for the remaining details…
PS… When I read his record for the first time I learned his name means… “to stir up”. When I read that I thought - this is no accident.

….I’ll try to keep this current
To be continued!