When I talked to All God's Children International (AGCI - the agency we will be using) in June, I was so excited and ready to get started with the adoption process. Screeeeeeeeech! That was the sound of the brakes. They have a policy that you can't start the process until your youngest child is 1 year old, which left us with 6 months of waiting to even start. I wrote about my feelings/struggles with waiting here, but God quickly gave us a peace about the 6 months. We've used these months to pray, raise awareness and do a lot of fundraising.
My contact at AGCI told me that as it got closer to Grayson's birthday, we could start working on some of the paperwork and homestudy stuff to get a little head start. I decided this week to send off for our birth certificates . . . just because it was good for a task oriented girl like me to be able to finally mark something off a list! :) I called the homestudy agency to find out about the process (more on that later), but I ended up needing to call AGCI to ask a question.
I emailed my contact, only to get a reply that she was no longer working there. Boo . . . I really liked her! Yesterday I got a call from our new contact, Tiffany. I gave her my big schpeel (is that really a word? I use it, but definitely don't know how to spell it!) and she answered my question.
Then she rocked my world. She let me know that they changed the policy since Ethiopian adoptions are taking so long. You can now start the process when your youngest is 6 months. There was a mixture of excitement with a huge dose of "Why didn't anyone call me?!" The thought, "We've been waiting for 4 months and now I find out we could have actually already started . . . grrrrrrrrrrrrr!" came in my mind, but praise God, He quickly replaced it with nothing but thanksgiving! We are getting to start 2 months earlier than expected . . . hooray! I know God's timing is perfect so I won't spend another moment thinking of what might have been . . . all is as it should be and I'm so grateful for what God has done in us these past few months.
So we can start . . . officially! (You can do a little happy dance . . . I did!)
I was a runner in high school. Hurdles actually. I know some of you just fell off your chair . . . can't imagine this short girl getting over those hurdles, much less running fast while doing it! Anyway, sometimes when you would be at the start line, in the blocks, ready to run, you would getting a little over-anxious and jump the gun, false start. Most times you would get a second chance before being disqualified. That second time you knew you couldn't afford to false start again. It was so hard to want to get out fast, but have to reign yourself in a little to ensure you didn't jump the gun. What usually ended up happening was being over cautions which resulted in being the last out of the blocks and having to catch up during the race.
That is kind of how I feel. I was so ready in June, but had to put on the brakes. I had settled with peace into the waiting game. So when the gun went off, I found myself still in the blocks! I never expected to be told we could begin NOW, today, so I almost didn't know what to do with myself! I was so excited, but a little in shock. Don't worry . . . it didn't take long to get myself in gear. I submitted our official application this morning with our application fee. First step: done!
One thing you can pray for us about is our homestudy, which is the next big step. We have to use Catholic Charities in Baton Rouge. I spoke with the international social worker and she was very nice and very helpful . . . big praise. The tricky thing is that they require 10 hours of training before you can even start the homestudy process. No problem, we can do training. The training is a 2 hour class once a week for 5 weeks in Baton Rouge. Not ideal, but we'll make it work. But here's the kicker . . . she said they might not be offering the training again until January. AHHHHHHH! You mean that we've been given the green light only to have to put on the brakes again for another 2 months because they don't want to offer the training that they require?! A little frustrating!
So I'm going to call today and see if there is any way they will offer training sooner or let us begin now with the promise that we will do the training in January. Neither of those options may work and we might be right back to waiting another 2 months like we thought. Not gonna lie . . . I'll be disappointed. But I'm trying my best to cling to God's guidance and sovereignty in ALL things! Prayers appreciated!
Thanks for rejoicing with us that we've taken a step toward our little boy Easton!