Our dossier has been checked and re-checked, certified and authenticated, translated, and sent to Ethiopia! Very exciting step!
Now everyone is asking us:
What next? How long until your baby will be home?
The answer is:
Now we wait. For possibly 4+ years for our referral. I’ve struggled the last couple of weeks to wrap my brain around not having a plan or a timeline, but I’m starting to feel more peace about it. I’m sure there will be times when I’m sad about it and it crawls by, and long stretches of time when we’re just busy with life and it goes quickly.
Our agency doesn’t release a waiting list, like some other agencies. They just go by your DTE, so when people who are closer to your DTE are getting referrals, you know you’re closer to getting a referral. But, there is an UN-official waiting list, and we’re #90 in line for a toddler girl on that list. That number is truly not a complete picture, for many reasons. First of all, the toddler age range goes up to 48 months, so we could be number 1 on the toddler girl list, and get passed up over and over by families who have requested 3 and 4 year olds. Also, some families have requested wide age ranges, like 0-8 years old, or have not specified a gender. Those families are included on the toddler girl list, even though they may not end up being matched with toddlers or girls. Another factor is that the new PAIR regulations went into effect last week, so we will just now start to see what impact those have on timelines – it is expected to be significant. It’s all complicated and confusing, and I’m sure that’s the main reason that our agency doesn’t have an official list! But, we’re working hard at being thankful and content with #90, and will update you as we watch the number slowly tick away.
In the meantime, we want to glorify God in the wait. We’ll try to just keep training up our precious kiddos in the Lord, get our marriage as strong as it can be, gain as much spiritual knowledge as we can, work on more consistent quiet times, raise the remaining 60% of our funds, try to lose weight and get in better shape, advocate for orphan- and poverty-related issues, and prepare ourselves to parent a sweet little one who has been through an awful lot in her short life.
We’ll try to be thankful for every day, and not look back and realize that we wasted the time. Someday, we’ll hopefully see what a blessing the wait was.