Thursday, March 17, 2011

I'm going to Africa :)



We are going to Ethiopia!!!

Next month.

Oh my goodness.

{You can read more of our adoption story here and here.  The less verbose version is: we are adopting two little girls who were born with Down syndrome.  There have been many delays in this process and as a result it has been a bit of an emotional rollercoaster.  But they are so beyond worth it.}

Leaving Denver on April 18th.

Attending court in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on April 21st.

Spending two days in Rome (!!!!) on our way back.

This is a miracle.  Truly.

Because with all the talk of delays and problems and just general adoption drama, I am so incredibly grateful to at least have this court date.  Our case, for now, is moving forward.

Yes it's highly possible (likely, really) that we will still face delays based on MOWA's reduction in the number of adoptions being processed.  Deep breath.

And this has cast a bit of a pall over our process and court date news.

It's more like tempered excitement than all-out jubilation (which you naturally want to feel about this sort of thing.  Sigh.)


We get to meet our girls.


And, while I still have no clue when we can actually bring them home, I get to stand before a judge in a month's time.

And tell him or her that, yes, I have met these two sweet little ones.

And YES, I want them to become my daughters.

It is at that point when we may very well have to hear the judge tell us that the case is incomplete, and that we'll have to wait who-knows-how-long for them to actually become our daughters.

That will be unbelievably hard to hear, and it will be unbelievably hard to leave our girls behind on those terms.  Not being able to tell them "you are our daughters now, and we'll be back in several weeks."  Not being able to share happy-tear-inducing photos of them on Facebook or here on my blog, like so many other families have gotten to do.

Because if that happens, they WON'T be ours yet. 

But here's the thing.  We're still gonna show up next month.  And the whole showing up thing seems to have become a theme in my life.  I titled my blog four years ago because the previous title was boring I was inspired by a Sara Groves song that resonated so much with me at the time.  And it has only seemed to increase as the years have passed, this awareness that I want and need to be present, to offer up what I have, to give myself away with reckless abandon to babies and mopping and Jesus and to just, well, show up.

Regardless of the outcome, Kevin and I are taking another step in this process next month, and that is something I can be excited about!  We'll get to spend time with two of the cutest girlies on the planet.  We'll give them kisses and cuddles and hear their sweet little voices.  Perfection.

My mind has been literally SPINNING ever since we got the news.  We've made flight reservations, lined up our fearless out-of-state babysitter, and done a bit of brainstorming about the uh-MAZ-ing things we'll get to eat do and see in Rome. 

I'd be lying if I didn't say I'm a teeny bit nervous.  Oh, okay--a LOT nervous.  I'm a bundle of nerves, really, because our family size is about to increase by two.  We are adding two precious, made-in-God's-image girls to our family, who will be coming from a place of trauma and loss.  They have some developmental delays and potential health issues.  I don't know how the eventual transition will go.  I want these girls to feel so safe and cherished.  Nerve-inducing for sure.

I'm also nervous about leaving my other five children behind for ten days, though of course they'll be in great and more-than-capable hands with my mom.  And they're positively thrilled at the prospect.  (Hanging out with Grandma for ten days?  Without Mom and Dad around?  Yes please!  As for my mother, I can only hope she survives.) 

Then there are--shiver--the flights we'll have to endure.  Yes, I said endure.  Right after I shivered.  I HATE to fly, people.  I am quite possibly, in fact, the world's most fearful flyer, and I white-knuckle it the entire time, alternating between terrified silence as I grip the armrest to "WHAT WAS THAT NOISE?  Did you HEAR the engine make that sound?!" as I grip Kevin's arm, certain that this is it and we're going down.  That's not a very fun way to spend 20 hours.  I have flown a few times in recent years with friends (all on short domestic flights) and for some reason they do a better job of distracting me and keeping me under control.  But they won't be here this time, and this will also be my first time flying since watching the series LOST.  Um, did you SEE the first episode?  Oh my.  You can bet I will be chugging me some wine at the airport as I contemplate the possibility of having to decide whether to follow Jack or John Locke.  I should probably get this decided BEFORE I start in on the wine.

So yes, excitement and nervousness and anticipation and, did I mention excitement?  :)

We are going to Ethiopia!!!

Getting closer to bringing our girls home.

Meeting our girls.

So incredibly surreal, and the journey of a lifetime.  Can't WAIT to go back.

Thank you so much dear friends for your prayers and support.  I am so blessed by each one of you.  God is incredibly faithful and while we can't know for sure how this story will end, we are trusting the One who does.  I have found such consolation in all of your prayers and love over the past several months.  The relationships and connections formed through this blog have been the biggest joy of blogging, without a doubt, hands-down.

Over the next several weeks this here corner of the blogosphere will surely be filled with much frenzied chaos preparation, so enjoy your front row seat to the crazy.  :)

I'm seriously still wrapping my head around the whole thing.  We're going to Ethiopia to meet our little girls!


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