Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Enduring the Wait

I was feeling a bit discouraged yesterday evening and this morning, and feeling guilty for feeling discouraged. I think I have gotten myself back on track now.

One of my yahoo sisters has waited 3 years for a referral for a baby. She just received word that she will most likely travel in November and be home for the holidays, I was so excited for her, she is super sweet and God has had me praying for her and her family. Their little treasure is going to be a real treat, I think they are going to be surprised what God has in store for them by adding this jewel to their family. I just really feel God impressing on me how special this little guy is and what a joy he is going to bring to their family. Another family who had sent their dossier to Colombia one week before us, requesting 3 siblings, just found out that they may also have a referral coming in the next week or two. Not to mention another yahoo sister who I also feel very dearly towards has received her referral for a sib group of 3 after waiting well over a year (due to some mishaps) and will be traveling in Nov. So maybe I am feeling a bit left out. I honestly don’t feel it is our time to travel, but I would just love to have a simple word from Colombia…something as simple as your docs have been translated and in the hands of the ICBF, we will get to them soon. Sounds silly to be discouraged, and I guess I have to kick myself in the butt because we have only been waiting a month and a half. Some of these families have waited years.

"For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord...plans to give you a hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11

I really do have peace about the timing and Emi is hopeful for a referral by Christmas (knowing we won’t travel till January if that is the case). That would actually be ideal for me. Having several weeks to prepare to travel and prepare the house would be perfect for me, especially since I have a few weeks vacation in Dec. But…we will wait and see. I am just thinking positive thoughts, but reality is that according to the agencies time line we will not be called on to travel until late spring at the very earliest. So I better get used to just being excited for those families who receive referrals and travel between now and our time. And it truly is exciting to watch their stories unfold. Our time will come and it will be perfect!

He said to them: It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by His own authority. Acts 1:7

On a lighter note, Mamaw, Eric’s mom, bought Emi and Nate each Elementary Spanish level 1 workbooks. The kids have been excited to start working on them and are learning new words. Things are going to slow down for us quite a bit in about 2 weeks, so I plan to incorporate Spanish lessons at least 3 times a week for myself and the kids. The workbooks will really help.

I think that’s about it on our end.

Thanks to those of you who have signed the guestbook. It’s nice to know who’s keeping up on our journey.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Mama has to brag

Sorry in advance, I think this may be a bit lengthy.

It has been one of those weeks that you just couldn’t be any prouder. Let me start with Nate. First of all a few weeks ago he was given an award by his school. He received the “2007 Southwest Local School, Outstanding Student Award”. He was chosen by his teachers and school staff as the only 5th grader to receive this award. This is quite an honor. The plaque was presented to him at the local school board meeting. Emilee received this same award a few years ago. The faculty and staff at the kid’s school is amazing and it makes us proud to know they think so much of our children.

Then on Saturday at Nate’s football game he made his first touchdown. I should explain that he starts on both offense and defense. But on offense, he is a lineman, not a ball carrier. However, his coach put him in as full-back on about the 10 ish yard line. Nate was pumped, then made a touchdown. The action shot photographer, a friend of mine, captured the action then printed the shot and asked Nate to autograph it to be displayed in his photo bus. Then after the game the coach stopped me. He said that he put Nate in to run the ball because he has been the hardest working kid on the team for the past few years and always comes to practice and games with a good attitude and gives 100%, so he deserved to have a chance to run in a touchdown. It was very nice for Nate to be rewarded for his efforts.

Then Nate several days later comes walking down the hall, obviously in deep thought. He stops in front of me with a very serious look and says to me “Mom, do you ever wish you could see the future?” I said, “Yep, sometimes” He just looked at me silently for a few seconds and then continued to explain why he wished to see the future. “I really wish I could see the future and see who my other siblings are and when we get to go get them, I also wonder if I will get to play college football and then be in the NFL.” I had to laugh at him, but he was as serious as a heart attack. I just love to hear about what they are thinking. It warms your heart.

Now to brag on Emi a bit. The other day Emi said “hey mom guess what I ate today?” She went on to explain that they had tacos at school and one of the sides was refried beans. She said “I got them just to try. Guess why I tried them?” She then asked. “I tried them to start getting used to trying to eat new things and eating things I don’t like to be ready to go to Colombia.” I can’t imagine what is going thru their minds…fear of the unknown, but excitement to complete our family.

This week, today, Friday is Parent’s Day at their school. I was unable to go, but Eric, Daddy, is there. They have breakfast together and then they have an assembly that the parents get to sit in on. Well Emilee was chosen as one of two sixth graders to give a short speech for the parents. The title of her speech is “Why I am Proud of my Parents”. She gave the speech to me last night, knowing I was not going to be there today. It will be a surprise for her daddy. The speech reads as follows: My family is adopting 2 children from Colombia in South America. We are adopting 2 children under the age of 7. We have gone through a lot of paperwork and now we are just waiting for a cal to tell us they found a family of 2 for us. I am proud of my parents for doing this because I know there will be a family helped. Another reason I am proud of them is that I know they will give a better life to them. It will take cooperation, but there will be a better place for my new siblings. None of this would be going on if it were not for my mom and dad.

I have awesome kids.

Now, adoption stuff…

I will answer a question that was posed from my last entry. I mentioned that several families have received referrals and several families were traveling. The question was, Are any of them adopting 2 siblings ages 0 – 7? Nope, so we are still about 8 or 9 down on the list. I also mentioned in a previous post that no one travels after Nov 15th and that things pretty much shut down Dec 15 – Jan 15 (ish). So I asked if referrals are still made at this time or if that comes to a halt too. Our agency replied saying, “Referrals continue all through the holidays, although at a much slower rate than normal because personnel is out on vacation and they can't get everyone together always for an adoption committee meeting.” So that is good news, things will continue to move along thru the holidays.

Sorry this is so long, but being a mom is who I am, and I can’t help but brag on them when they deserve it. I have just been so proud of them as we have gone through this process. They are real troopers and are just as excited as we are. But in all the hubbub of the adoption stuff, I don’t want them to feel left out and praising them for who they are and what they do is very important.

Friday, October 12, 2007

We call it Paper Pregnant

Tough week…yup…tough week, for no particular reason other than having an overwhelming feeling in my gut and not being able to digest it. For as long as I can remember this “feeling” happens to me…I get these “feelings” from time to time, I like to call them feelings of intuition, but really it’s God tugging at me to listen up. Normally I can get to the meat of it and focus my prayer to relieve the “feeling”. But there have been a few times that I just can’t shake it. Well, this week I have spent the entire week with my gut in my throat and not being able to pin point its point. I can’t focus at work, can’t sleep well and I become emotional in my quiet time. Eeek! I would like to think that it’s adoption related and we will receive word that the ICBF has approved us, but I just don’t think that’s it…it’s more than that. I may never know…ugh…I hate surprises. Actually, I do feel better today…what a relief.

Maybe I am just feeling overwhelmed at the fact that God thinks enough of us to give us 2 more blessings to raise. When you put it that way you are reminded of what a huge responsibility it is to raise your children. Wow!

I am so anxious for the process to move along. Emilee (and the rest of us) really wanted to travel by Christmas. She keeps saying, “look at all the miracles already, we can still travel by Christmas.” The faith of a child! I am trying to think realistically that it will be in the late spring, I don’t want to get our hopes up and be let down. But Emilee gets upset with me for my lack of faith. Actually, I have complete peace about the timing. God knows I am not the most patient person when it comes to surprises so if He doesn’t give me peace, I will become a crazy lady and probably not very pleasant to be around.

Several families from CHI will be traveling this weekend and will meet their children early next week. I am hoping a few of them can blog some so we can keep up with their journey. And for some reason it helps our time here go a bit faster. I guess because by reading their journals it makes us feel a part of their journey and distracts us from “our wait”, but also allows us to rejoice that an orphaned child has found their forever family and is loved. Not to mention it’s just really cool to feel so close to what’s going on when you are so far away.

I just can’t wait to see their faces, learn their personalities, and love them as they so deserve. I have noticed that I am now noticing every pregnant woman around me. We are what is called “Paper Pregnant”, the swelling is of the spirit and soul. I remember all the questions we had when we were pregnant with Emi and Nate. What will they look like? Will they be a mommy’s girl/boy or daddy’s girl/boy? Boy or Girl? Fussy or easy going? And on and on the list goes. It’s all part of the pregnancy, it’s fun. The biggest difference is that when you are physically pregnant, you know that at the most in 9 months time you will have your hands on your little one. But being paper pregnant there is no definite time, I guess that’s why the wait is harder. Plus knowing the children are living in less than optimal conditions…mmm…tough to swallow.

"Let us hold fast to the hope we profess without wavering - for He who promised is faithful." Hebrews 10:23

Back in a week…or sooner if we hear something!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

8 'ish' Families Ahead of Us

Okay, for those of you who don’t know I love culture and languages. I would love to know a handful of languages. I have wanted to learn Spanish for a long time and finally was able to take college courses at the college in the Spring. But because of my work schedule and the kids activity schedules I have not been able to continue with the classes and it’s driving me crazy. So I finally broke down and bought a Spanish series that I can do at home and it has practice CDs for the car…perfect! I know I won’t be fluent without some formal education and emersion into the language, but it’s at least a way for me to continue with what I have already learned.

The other night I was practicing some of my Spanish working with Nate. He finally started catching on and is a pro at the basic greeting paragraph. “Hello”, then if someone asks his name he can reply with “my name is Nate”, then the person may say “nice to meet you”, and he can say “likewise” (igualamente…his favorite Spanish word)! By the time Emi joined in, Nate was doing really well and Emi was a bit jealous. She said that I will have to use Spanish for Nate and Sign Language with her. She understands sign, but is having a more difficult time with the Spanish. They have learned a few key phrases like Good Night, I love you, time to go to bed, thank you, your welcome, please, sorry, bathroom and a few others. So I am hoping that having this series to work with on the computer, that it will help all of us to learn. Nate can mimic the accent really well, it’s funny.
Aside from the Spanish some other news is that we had asked if there was a way to find out how many Children’s Hope International families are ahead of us with paperwork already in Colombia and waiting. Our Ohio representative was able to tell us that there are approximately 4 families ahead of us for 2 siblings ages 0-6 and 4 families ahead of us for 2 siblings ages 0-7. So about 8 families are ahead of us. It will be kind of fun to watch the monthly notices we receive from CHI of who is traveling and who is soon to travel because they state the siblings and ages of the children that families are adopting. So we can kind of keep up and have an idea of how quickly things are going, by the monthly updates. The numbers she gave us are by no means a gage of the timing, when it’s our turn, it’s our turn and it will be perfect timing. But still the numbers are a kind of comforting as we see the folks who are traveling each month.
We did request a list of the children who are on the waiting list to be adopted. Some have special needs of various sorts, some are older children or sibling groups etc. We looked over the list with open hearts, but did not feel that any of them were our forever children. So we will wait, but pray for those on the list to find their forever families.

Also, several families from the Yahoo group will be traveling in October. Some of us meet in a chat room on Monday nights for chat time and prayer with each other. It has been the neatest thing. It’s great to rejoice with the folks getting ready to travel and to be able encourage those who are waiting. It’s a great way to get feedback on simple questions and to learn from those who have already traveled and are back home. I am glad I joined, it really is a blessing to be able to connect with folks all over the states also adopting from Colombia.

That’s all for now
Hasta luego (see you later)