Yesterday, Thursday, July 29 at 1:16pm my phone rang. It was the call we have been waiting on for 8 months 3 weeks and 5 days. We got our referral!!!!! Let me explain my day....
Every Thursday I host a women's Bible study in my home which is led by my mother. We have been studying the book of James. Today we talked about wisdom and how we walk in it. I just love sitting under my mom's teaching...she is so anointed. Around 12:30 everyone started heading home and then my nephew arrived for his weekly tutoring session. He is 15 and catching up on Algebra and a few other subjects. We were diligently going over how to divide exponents at the kitchen table when my cell phone rang. I looked at the caller ID on the screen and noticed that it had an 812 area code. At first I thought it was a friend of mine because she has an 812 number, but her name would have popped up too. Immediately I thought....oh man this could be it!! I answered the phone and on the other line I heard, "Laura...yes...this is Carol, Carol Schaeffer from FTIA...yes...how does the name 'B' sound?" At that moment, I could barely process what she was saying. I said, "Are you kidding me? Is this really THE call?" She said, "Yes it is and you have been matched with an absolutely beautiful baby girl." Oh MY GOODNESS. My heart leaped out of my chest and a scream escaped from my mouth. I jumped up from the table and screamed some more and ran into the other room. She began going down this list of information that didn't register and I told her to wait a minute so I could get my compter so I could type everything down that she was saying. She then went on to say that she was going to send me all of the info as soon as we got off the phone...so I said OK...bye! Immediately I called Andy on his cell phone because he was in St. Louis on a business trip. The phone rang and he didn't answer so I hung up and dialed again. This time he picked it up and I said, "Are you busy...can you talk...He said....are you ok...YES...Today is the day." He said, "I knew it!!! When I saw you call twice, I knew that is what it was!" I forwarded him the email and gave him the info Carol had told me on the phone. We were both shaking and trying to process the reality of what had just happened. It was so surreal, so unforgettable. We hung up with each other and opened the email on our own because he had to continue his meeting. We both saw her precious face at the same time and fell in love immediately. She is the most precious little thing. At nearly 3 months old, she is not even as big as Noah was when he was born. She weighs 8.8 pounds and is 21 1/2 inches long. Her eyes are big and beautiful. She was born the day before my 34th birthday and exactly 6 months to the day from the day we submitted our dossier. It is hard to believe we are finally at this point and we can see the angel that God has hand picked for our family.
We held off telling the kids because Andrea was at girlscout camp, so we told them this evening after we had the acceptance paperwork completed. We got the kids all together in the car and said, "We have something very important to tell you guys." They all looked at us somewhat fearful, as if they may be in trouble...then Andy said it is a surprise! They then got excited so Andy asked, "What is the best thing that you can think of that can ever happen?" Noah in his innocence and excitement said, "Getting some ice cream!" We laughed and said it was better than ice cream. Andrea said..."Is it Olivia?" And we said "YES"! They were SO excited. Andrea just said, "God new when she would come. He had perfect timing!" So true and special. Nathan hid his face which is something he does when he is excited. Noah started jumping up and down. What an awesome couple of days.
Today we have been frantically trying to complete the paperwork because we leave for Dale Hollow tomorrow and we want to get it there ASAP. AHHHHHHHH....Thank you JESUS!!! I am at such peace.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
I am SOOO happy to say that the Lord has granted me peace FOR THE MOMENT. I had the awesome opportunity to visit with three beautiful women that are on this journey with me. Jill, my cousin by marriage (weird story how that all came about), invited us over for the day. She just brought home this beautiful boy a month ago....and what a doll! I fell in love with him. At first he was a little leary of me, but that was expected. By the end of the afternoon he was crawling over to me and he even fell asleep on me for about 20 minutes. He is almost 11 months old. It gave me such peace to hold that little boy and know that my daughter will soon be in my arms. I know that it will happen soon and even if she is a little older when she comes home, it will be soooo worth it. I also got to spend time holding my friend Emily's beautiful little girl. She is so precious! The last time I got to see her at my house she would crawl all around my table, but she loved coming over to me...hugging me...them zipping back over to mom. Yesterday, it took her about 15 minutes and she was back doing the same thing. I even got some kisses from her!!! She is just over a year and a spunky little lady. I just love these two kiddos! Emily could write a book about her experiences over there...here should be her title..."How to Prepare for Travel to a 3rd World Country for International Adoption". She is loaded with knowledge. She is my go to girl for info. My friend Kelly was there as well. She is getting ready to travel to pick up her precious baby girl who is very tiny. We are hoping she gets the first Embassy date in August! Kelly is also super prepared. We had a great time learning how to do African girls hair and what products will be best for our babies. She is going to email me her list for travel. She lives relatively close to me so it will be nice once our babies are home!
With all of this said....I feel like God gave me this weekend to soak up baby time and to refresh my spirit towards a more positive outlook on this adoption roller coaster. Aaron and Elliott are amazing children with amazing moms! Kelly will be an amazing mom as well. I am so happy for her and look forward to her story when she returns. Thank you God for putting these women in my life to provide support and hope~!
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Well....can you tell that I am getting frustrated! We have officially been waiting 8 months and 5 days for our referral and have been in process for over 15 months. We are approaching the rainy season when courts shut down for 6 + weeks and there are no court appointments. This will push us back. I also just heard that the US Embassy is cutting their appointments in half because they are understaffed. This will push us back even further. All this comes into play AFTER we get our referral. We haven't even gotten that yet. I am beyond frustrated. I know there are baby girls at the orphanage as of June 4 and none have been referred yet. I just want to be done with this entire process. It is way harder than I ever expected. I try to keep myself busy and I am busy, but this is always at the forefront of my mind. I completed our new POA's last week and Caring Hands just called yesterday telling me that they are shipping them back. So by the end of the week I will send them back to FTIA. They will forward them on to Ethiopia for us. I will be glad to have this part done. Well...I don't have that much more to say. Oh, I do get to go to my friend Jill's house this weekend and squeeze on baby Aaron who just came home from ET. That will give me my baby fix!