So this process is tough. There is no way around that, I knew going into it that'd be the case, and I definitely know now. I think the hardest part for me is when our expectations aren't meant. It's like that with life in general, but with adoption perhaps it increases. Our process has been a bit different than "normal". "Normally" you get all your paperwork in, the dossier complete. It goes over to Ethiopia, gets translated and sits and waits, somewhere between 4-6 mths for you to get your referral. Once you get your referral, it is sent all in one package to the courts and waits for it to go through court and let you know you're free to travel.
Well we got our referral even before all of our paperwork was in. We were just waiting for the homestudy basically, for it to be sent over. Well the homestudy was sent to us on Monday of this week (as noted before, that was about 6 weeks later than we planned). We talked to our Ethiopian coordinator to see what happens next and she wrote back today saying she didn't receive the homestudy yet. This is frustrating on a number of levels but it all boils down to our expectations weren't met. Now our expectations have collided with the fact that Tariku is waiting for us. The care center that CHSFS runs is beyond wonderful, but it doesn't take the place of two loving parents, two loving siblings and one extremely loving chocolate lab. The more Tariku bonds with the nannies at the care center, the more difficult it will be for his bonding process with us.
When we accepted the referral we were told somewhere between 12-16 weeks for travel. They also told a couple other families that same time frame who received referrals that week. The problem is those other families had their dossiers complete, translated and waiting for their good news. We don't. I have a feeling we will see those families who received their referrals after us travel before us all because the "ducks weren't in a row". It's a harsh reality, especially since we've paid a pretty penny for those ducks to be in a row.
It's hitting me hard today. We're snuggled up in our nice warm house, watching the sleet come down outside and I wish I was making 3 cups of hot cocoa and 2 coffees. I realize we have our lives to spend with Tariku as our son and when I put it in perspective I know God's timing is perfect. But alas I am human, and perhaps more so today, I am a mom. Mom's don't function well when one of their children is being wronged and I guess that's what I'm feeling for Tariku today. Mama Bear is fighting for you, Tariku. I am a fightin.