Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Ramblings and a book review

Now we have been on the wait list for about a month and luckily the time has gone by very quickly. Emily and I have been busy enough with the kids and work and traveling to really not get too impatient about the next 2-3 months of waiting for "the call".

We have both been spending time reading books about adoption, interacial complexities and Ethiopia.

I read Same Kind of Different as Me and really enjoyed the book. Our Church hosted Ron Hall and Denver Moore (the authors) 2 weeks ago before we received the book in the mail. I am really bummed that Emily and I didn't get to see them speak and get the book signed by them when they were there. The book was fantastic and really was uplifting to read about how the Lord worked through the characters to help them see through race and preconceived biases against social-economic statuses.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are you adopting?
Scott and I always wanted 3-5 kids. After three high risk pregnancies, we decided that that chapter of our lives was closed. (Being pregnant anyways.) We still wanted to have a girl even though we already had 3 wonderful biological boys and decided that adoption was right for us.

Which agency are you using?
We're using Gladney, which is base out of Fort Worth, TX. So far, we've been very pleased with our decision. They have been very supportive and very quick to answer any of our questions. We feel confidant in them since they have been around for over 100 years.

Why International versus Domestic?
We had never even considered the differences between the two until we started thinking about adoption ourselves. We decided that we didn't want to emotionally deal with being picked by a birth mother, and then for her to change her mind in the end. It would be several months of excitement and then a huge let down. We also didn't want to have an open adoption. Pretty much all domestic adoptions are open in some way or another. It varies widely from one picture to yearly get togethers. We decided to be selfish and keep her all to ourselves.

Why Ethiopia?
We knew that we wanted to have an infant girl. Seeing that we already have 3 boys, that eliminates us from some programs automatically. We also wanted to be able to choose the gender and get an infant, or as close as possible. By narrowing it all down, we decided that Ethiopia would be our best fit. Plus, Ethiopian food has long been our favorite, so it will be a pleasure to have an even better reason to learn to cook it now. Plus, in our heart of hearts, we knew we'd find her there.

How long does it take?
We were able to finish our application and our dossier (all of the paperwork that is sent to our Sec. of State, then the State Department, then on to Ethiopia for translation) in about 3 1/2 months. From there, the referral time is 3-5 months for Ethiopia, then 6-8 weeks till we travel to get her. (The referral means when a child is placed with us and they start sending her med. records and pictures).

Do you worry about raising a child of another race?
Absolutely, but then worrying is just a plain fact about parenting. We're worried that people won't be accepting of her and all of the obstacles that may come her way. Being white, we'll never know what it's like to be black. We just pray that we do the best that we possibly can. We never would have taken on this adoption if we didn't think we could handle it. Plus, I think worrying about her makes us, if not better parents, at least more sensitive.

How have your families and friends reacted?
Fortunately, we have had very positive responses and a lot of excitement. It will be the second granddaughter on my side and the first granddaughter on Scott's side. We have had a few people that were surprised, but I think more surprised over us adopting than from where. Only one couple was so taken aback that we didn't even tell them that we were adopting from Ethiopia. It was an unfortunate reaction, but we don't see them often and will probably become more infrequent if they're not supportive.

What age have you requested?
Seeing that we already have three wonderful boys, we decided to go for the girl! We've requested 0-9 months so that we can start from her earliest stage possible. We hate to miss all of those first firsts that happen in their infancy.

Do you worry about AIDS/HIV?
HIV/AIDS unfortunately is extremely widespread throughout Ethiopia. We didn't want to have to emotionally deal with this, so we've requested a child without HIV. She will be tested three times -one Rapid test and two PCR tests. These tests are done before we even know that we're getting her so that we don't have to make a difficult decision.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

I have so many other things to do....

Last week, Scott and I had the pleasure of meeting up with three other families that are also adopting from Ethiopia. It's always interesting to meet other people that are in the process or already have adopted, because everyone always has a story. It's really nice to have a network of people that understand everything that adoption entails. The only downside to our meeting was the discovery of our lack of a blog. We knew about blogs, had thought about blogs and had planned on blogging, but just hadn't gotten around to it yet. Needless to say, we were the only ones there without a blog-thus here is our blog.... I have so many other things to do, especially with three kids, but now I find myself looking at other people's blogs thinking of things we need to add. Like earlier today, I found a great blog (also adopting from Ethiopia) that has music. I IM'd Scott and told him we now need music. I also saw some FAQ's that were really good and told him we need to add those too. (Nothing like keeping up with the Jones's, huh). I even made myself a list of things I want to get done and organized before we get our little girl. I can say that I have successfully done a few things off the list, but the list is still taped to the fridge, waiting for me to cross more things off. Instead, here I am typing, thinking of adding some music...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Names, Names, Names

We've finally been tossing around names, which is somewhat easier this time since we know we're getting a girl. At least we don't have to come up with a boys' and a girls' name this time. We think that maybe we've decided (still not 100%) so I won't name it quite yet. We do, however, think that we're going to give her a first and middle name, then use her name that her birth mother gave her as a second middle name. We were once at the airport and saw this lady working there that had such a long first name that it took up the entire name tag. We hope that that is not her name, but we'll make do if it is. We just may have to shorten it by 20 letters or so. Anyways, we told the boys of our name idea and they were anything but enthusiastic. They pretty much just scrunched up their faces like we were crazy. Oscar wants to name her Bessie (like a cow), or maybe Ellie, which Scott and I much prefer. We told them that regardless of what we name her, they're welcome to call her by their own name that they choose to give her. The poor thing is going to be so confused with so many names.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

our first post

Ok, so we are a little behind on doing the blog, but better late than never, right?

An update:
All of our documentation was finished and sent to DC on September 27th. From there it is sent to Ethiopia and we are told that the current waiting time for a referral is 3-5 months. So we could travel and pick up our baby girl anytime in between December - March.

The only thing left for us to do is to complete our 10 hours of educational training which includes any courses or books.

We just ordered the following books from amazon and should receive them shortly:

Same Kind of Different as Me: A Modern-Day Slave, an International Art Dealer, and the Unlikely Woman Who Bound Them Together [Hardcover]
By: Ron Hall (Author), Denver Moore (Author)

There Is No Me Without You: One Woman's Odyssey to Rescue Her Country's Children [Paperback]
By: Melissa Fay Greene (Author)

I'm Chocolate, You're Vanilla [Paperback]
By: Margeurite Wright (Author)

Born in Our Hearts: Stories of Adoption [Paperback]
By: Filis Casey (Author), Marisa Catalina Casey (Author)

Also we are watchings some videos about adoption on a website and our CPR class that we took a few months ago should count toward our goal. So the end is in sight.

The time really should fly from now until when we start getting pictures and when we travel as the kids are gearing up for Halloween, then we travel to Indy for Thanksgiving, and finally Christmas... busy busy