A dear friend's prayer list, hanging in her beautiful home.
In case you didn't know, my husband and I are in the process of adopting two precious little girls from Ethiopia. Both of them were born with Down syndrome. You can learn more about all of that here.
After months (and months) of delays and setbacks, we finally passed court in July.
Our case was then submitted to the US Embassy a couple of weeks ago. And, not surpisingly (because anything that can go wrong with this process does), it is stuck and delayed again due to the embassy wanting more paperwork at the eleventh hour.
Truth be told, I'm discouraged. Tired of waiting, tired of the unending bureaucracy, and tired of wondering if these girls will ever come home.
And I'm quite aware of the embassy's motives in all of this. And I'm just as disgusted as the next person about the unethical side of international adoption. Really. So please don't feel the need to enlighten me or explain why this is a good thing. Because I get it.
I was actually at a picnic on Sunday where I ran into the judge who processes all of the Ethiopian adoption cases. The same woman we appeared before in Ethiopia, who approved our adoption of Tigist and Mekdes. The courts are currently closed and it turns out that she's in the United States for a few weeks. I would have given anything to pick her brain about the current climate of Ethiopian adoption, but instead I was polite and simply asked for a picture with her.
I'm honestly not sure why she was at a picnic in Denver that was hosted by a local adoption agency (which we used for our homestudy), but I thought it was...odd. Like many things when it comes to international adoption. And while I've been mulling these things over for years now, one thing keeps coming to mind:
There are many, many children who legitimately need a family. Today.
They are in the US foster care system, they are in Eastern Europe, they are in China, they are in Ethiopia.
They are typically older, with medical needs, or developmentally delayed.
And while it is so completely maddening to be in the midst of an adoption process that is essentially going nowhere, I want people to know that there are so very many children who need someone to fight for them.
As for us, we will continue to wait on our daughters' visas, and hope and pray that it won't be too long. While I'm a huge advocate of adoption, I have to be honest and confess that I probably wouldn't personally begin an Ethiopian adoption right now. Things are so up-in-the-air and, well, messy.
But, I also confess that I'm glad I didn't know this was going to happen back when we started the process.
Because Tigist and Mekdes really, really needed a family.
And, now they have one.
So we'll wait as long as we need to. Because they're my daughters, and because they're worth it.