Saturday, July 28, 2012

First Visit

Jeffrey getting fingerprinted
Our first visit with the social worker was yesterday, July 27, 2012. We had requested a certain social worker due to a friend's referral, but they assign you to a social worker. We were so pleased with the social worker we were assigned to work with. Susan not only knows a lot about international adoption, but she adopted her three children internationally. It was nice to know that the person working with us had went through a similar experience. She did tell us that adoption is much more time consuming and challenging then it use to be. I figured so, because I have spoke with many older people who have adopted children which are now my age, and they make it seem like it was an easy process.

We were first interviewed (I don't know if that is really the right word, but I kind of feel like that is what we were doing) together and then she divided us up and asked us things individually. I honestly thought the questions that we were asked together were more challenging than the individual ones. We were asked things like what have our biggest fights been over, what have been major stresses to our marriage, how do we deal with conflict, what attracts us to each, etc.

I wasn't sure how soon she would be coming to our home, but she is coming this Friday. Saturday we are taking a CPR class at Children's Hospital. We have such a long journey ahead of us, but it is nice to know we are making progress.

Just so you have idea of where we are, none of our paperwork has even seen the country of Ethiopia. We first have to get everything approved by the state of Illinois which we are finding is one of the most challenging states to work with. Apparently, Arizona is a tough one too. Once we are approved by Illinois, then everything goes to Virginia to be translated and approved by our adoption agency. Then it is all shipped to Ethiopia and the nothing but waiting starts. It feels nice to check things off our list daily, but the mounds of paperwork just don't seem to end. So many people have been asking us why adoption is so expensive and we are learning how easy the expenses add up. $100 for fingerprinting, $50 for CPR classes, $32 for photos (Walgreen ripped us off!), $10 TB test, $20 copay for doctor exam, $300 for application with social worker, alone none of these things cost that much but do it all in a week, and you start to apply your faith. We already live on a tight budget, but we believe that this is something we are supposed to do, and we know it will all work out. We have some big checks to write in the next couple months.

Please be praying for Jeffrey. He has had two interviews this past week, and both of these jobs would be full time, better pay, and benefits. This would be so much better than what he has now. He went to a second interview for one, and he is going on a second interview for the other Tuesday.

Thanks for reading and following our story. We will keep you updated!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Vacation

We are currently in Delaware spending the last day of vacation visiting family. As we told you in our last blog that we were waiting for the social worker to contact us, but she was on vacation. Of course, she is now home and ready to meet with us, and we are hours from home.

We will arrive home late tomorrow night. Next week, we both have doctor's appointments to have our medical exams done for our home study and for our dossier. We both have to meet with the social worker individually, and then she will come visit our home and speak with both of us. We are hoping we can have this all done before Rachel goes back to school. This is the last big thing besides the FBI finger printing that has to be done before we can send everything to Ethiopia. We are also still waiting on Jeffrey's birth certificate so please pray that it comes soon! We just have a minor things besides passport photos (we already have our passports but we still have to get passport photos).

Even though we were on vacation, we didn't stop thinking about our baby and Ethiopia. We found the Ethiopian flag at Rockefeller Center, and we also took Rachel's picture with a ticker on the street that has the name of last emperor of Ethiopia on it. We did some research and like many leaders, he did some good for Ethiopia and for Africa, but he also wasn't the best man in the world either. From what we quickly read in an article from New York Times, he was a a greedy man who did a lot of things to better himself and not his people.

We want our baby to know that before he or she was even born we loved them so much and thought about them all the time. We also want to educate ourselves on Ethiopia, so we can do our best to teach our child his/her culture. We want our child to be proud to be an American citizen, but we also want our child to be proud of his/her African heritage.

We will continue to keep you all updated on the home study process. Please pray that everything goes smoothly.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Social Worker

Our last post was mentioning how we are currently in the process of waiting for the social worker to contact us. Jeffrey contacted them on Monday, and they told us that the adoption social worker would be on vacation till next Monday! We have been trying to do the things that we can to prepare for the home study. We are trying to do little things around our house. I have been trying not to think about how nothing has really moved in a while. We are still gathering and creating information that we need for our dossier which goes to Ethiopia. Even though the home study process is taking a little longer to get started than we planned, we will have almost everything ready to ship off when it is complete.

Please keep us in your prayers. The other night it really hit me hard that my baby who may not be born yet is not going to have his/her mommy and daddy at the beginning of his/her life. I just began to weep as I thought about this. Oh how I can't wait to meet him/her. Even though we haven't met and he/she may not be born yet, I am falling more in love everyday. This baby is already a huge part of our lives and I can't wait for them to enjoy it with us.