Well, it has not quite been the week we hoped for so far. Tuesday was a rough day, and I was just too upset and emotional to manage a post. However, I know how many families earlier in the adoption process watch the blogs of those ahead of them to learn about the process. So, in fairness, I want to make sure that I don't only post about the exciting easy parts, but the setbacks as well. My tears have stopped flowing and I'm calm; so here goes . . .
After not receiving our referral last week, we reached the point of 2 months and 3 weeks of an "approximately 2 month" wait. So, we optimistically formed a lovely plan: divide and conquer. Elizabeth (the mommy in the other family whose file is very close friends with ours by now) would stay up until 2 am Tuesday morning and call for an update. Meanwhile, I would send a heartfelt email to the same person. Then I would follow up in Thursday with a call. These measures combined with our POA's personal visits to the office and PRESTO! a referral by the end of the week.
I should have known that when I am woken up an hour earlier than usual with Brooks in bed with me and both of us covered in pee (from him, not me) that it wasn't going to be a great day. Nevertheless, I quickly stripped the bed and got back in while shoving Brooks a yogurt tube and plopping him in front of Dora. I thought to check my email and not seeing anything sighed thinking well maybe tomorrow it will come. Then the phone rang. Now, Chris knows better than to call me before 8 a.m., so this was not good news. He had checked our email to find the news that when our POA arrived at the Minstry offices he was told that the lady who handles the adoption files on behalf of the Minister had resigned. They were not able to tell him ANYTHING about what that meant for our files.
In case, you're wondering what needs to happen for us to get our referrals and proceed to the court date that finalizes the adoption, someone needs to pick up the file from the desk, have the Minister of Family and Gender sign it, walk it to the scanner and scan it, and then email the documents to us. That's it. Somewhere in that office is a file with our son's picture and all his information and we can't get it. I remember around Christmas time when two earlier families in our "group" were waiting for their referrals knowing that they were just sitting on a desk waiting for a signature. I just couldn't imagine that feeling--it's not a good one.
After contemplating an immediate flight to Rwanda, I have spent the last 2 days calming down and have come to a few conclusions:
* When someone very integral to an office leaves, the said office will need some time to refocus, regroup, and reassign all of her duties.
* Just because they aren't telling us the plan, doesn't mean there isn't one (thanks, Tina, for this one!)
* Really, approaching the 3 month mark is where almost all the families before us have been when they received their referrals. So, I am worried about the POSSIBLE implications of this news, not the actual implications. Until we see how the next week or so plays out, we don't know if this is really even a delay.
* The Minister of Family and Gender (MIGEPROF) is responsible for a whole lot of important things. Our adoption is just one of them. They are led by a strong, competent woman and staffed by people who take their jobs seriously. They will get it done.
* Worrying, crying, losing sleep, planning for every worst case scenario, etc is not going to solve this any faster.
So, what are we going to do? We are going to be patient and allow the Ministry the time to work this out. We know that they are committed to the well-being of our child. They know that he should have a family as soon as possible and they will make it happen. We will be proactive in initiating and maintaining communication with MIGEPROF both individually and through Peter, our POA. If need be, after sufficient time has passed, I will go there and see if I can personally ask for favor in the matter.
In the meantime, I will dwell on the following:
Matthew 6:34 So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.
Please do include us, the MIGEPROF, and our son in your prayers. Unless you've been there, I can't tell you the helplessness you feel knowing your son as been picked for you and you can't know who he is, you can't make sure he's eating well, you can't get him clean water, you can't take him to the doctor, and you can't hold him and kiss him. I'm not saying it's a harder battle than many that others go through; it's just a very different, surreal, unexplainable one. To that end, it is so helpful and such a blessing to have met others on this journey with us. The Hunter's are a family whose file arrived in Rwanda with ours, was approved on the same day, and whose children were picked at the same time. Elizabeth has a great perspective on this because it is her 3rd adoption experience. You can check out her wonderful blog at: http://elizabethhunter.wordpress.com/
Hopefully, posting again soon with good news!