Friday, January 28, 2011

Out of the millions of orphans

Asher, God chose YOU to be our son. Sometimes I get caught up in this wait, how long it's been, how far my patience and faith have been stretched. But I am forgetting the most important thing of all.....God is in control. Not me.

As January comes to an end soon, I have to admit it's been the toughest month yet. There have been incredible highs, and lows. I've cried, I've laughed, been mad, happy, thankful and angry all at the same time. I've prayed for understanding, for patience, for peace. The more I pray for these things, the more and more my eyes are opened to certain scriptures that He lays on my heart:

Psalms 68:6: "God sets the lonely in families"

Psalms 27:14: "Wait on the LORD: be of good courage; and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord"

Psalms 68:5: "A father to the fatherless, and a defender of the widows, is God in his holy habitation"

Philippians 4:6: "In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God"

2 Samuel 22:33: "God is my strong fortress. He makes my way perfect."

John 16:33: "I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world."

Psalms 146:9: "The Lord takes care of those who are in a strange land; he gives help to the widow and the child who has no father"

I've found that I'll say several of these many many times a day. The moment I start to wonder or get upset because we've not heard anything. The moment I feel sad because we will miss his first birthday. The moment I feel so disheartened and out of control. I say these words of truth. These are things that are clearly spoken to us. I do not have to worry about when Asher will be home, because God sets the lonely in families and He is in control. Everyday I wait my faith is straighten in the Lord. God is a father to the fatherless and wants nothing more than Asher to be forever with us. God is on our side. He is working even when we feel like nothing is happening. Even while we sleep. Even while we go about our everyday lives, God is working out Asher's wonderful journey. I do not have to worry. I will continue to pray knowing He hears my prayers. He knows my heart. He sees the end when I cannot. He is watching over Asher. I may not be able to do anything to get him home, but God can, and will. With Him anything is possible. I trust His will. I trust His timing.

Thank you Lord for opening my eyes again to the bigger picture. This wonderful journey we've all been on. Thank you for giving us the boldness to live it out. Thank you for making us wait so that we would have Asher as our son. Thank you for all of the preparations you are working through now. We wait in peace and rejoice in everyday, with news or not, because it brings us closer to our son.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Just a rough week, that's all

I am now able to blog about this past week. boy it was a rough one. Two call. Well, lack there of.

I know, I know...we haven't been waiting as long as some families have for their travel call. Before I even begin this post, I want to say that no matter how long we wait, I am incredibly grateful and thankful for this entire adoption process. I am in no way bitter towards anyone or anything. Just sad really.

So, when speaking to our agency back in December concerning EP's (if you remember from my earlier posts, Korea ran out of EP's-permits that our kiddos need to leave the country and come home-and everyone was *patiently* waiting for January 1st so they could start submitting them again), she told us that Holt prioritizes waiting children (Asher is from Rainbow kids) and she said we should be in that first batch. Our agency doesn't get notification of when or what families are submitted for EP, but I've been following the Holt boards to watch this information. A batch was submitted on the 4th and 11th. I was so excited! There has been 4 or 5 other friends I've made along the way and we were all in the same boat in this waiting process.

So on Tuesday, there was action all over the boards and fac*book of folks getting EP approvals and travel calls! I was so excited! This little boy I've prayed for and love so much would be coming home!! I thought for sure that we were in that group going by what our agency said, so I was literally waiting by my phone. Ready to make that call to our family and friends. Ready to feel that completion after almost 2 years of waiting. Ready to know that we were finally bringing our son home!!!!

Well, as you can guess, no call came. I finally called our agency. To sum it up, they don't really have any information to give. She was pretty sure we were not submitted, and did not give any idea of when we would be. Nothing at all hopeful to go on. At all. When I asked about the first batch situation, she clarified that was "an assumption". Would have been nice to have that clarification as soon as she said it in December since I had been holding onto that conversation this entire time. So, we were not getting a travel call that day, this week, this month, probably not even next month. It's looking more and more like March....or worst April or later.

I'm not going to lie, I cried. A lot. I'm just so emotionally exhausted from all of this. I want him home so badly it physically hurts. Tuesday and Wednesday were very bad days with lots of puffy eyes! But, my crying didn't do anything to change the situation. In reality, we are with Holt and their travel takes much longer than SWS, which is who most of my friends are with. It's not a surprise they got their travel call at all. I decided that instead of having a pity party for myself, I was going to be positive about much as I can!

It sucks that we will not be there by his birthday. I mean, it just does. It sucks for every family to have to wait like this, it doesn't matter how long they have waited or what their situation is. I've said it before, adoption is not for the faint at heart and boy I've learned that lesson over and over again this week. So, I'm just going to be thankful that Asher is with an amazing foster family who is taking great care of him. Thankful he had a good January check up. Thankful in knowing that this wait Does have an end. We Will be in Korea soon. So for now I'm still trying to keep busy and February is turning out to be action packed..and the shortest month of the year thank maybe it will fly by. We still have to get his room straighten up and now I have time to learn some Korean phases (I love you, thank you, etc.) that I really wanted to learn before we traveled.

Thanks everyone for your support this past week and kind words. It's really meant a lot to have such great friends!!!!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Some travel advice?

Nope, they haven't told us we can travel yet (though a girl can wish!!), but in this time of *patient* waiting for our travel call, I'm trying to go ahead and get things together because I know how crazy things will be then!

So, I'm looking for travel advice. I've never booked a flight in my life, so we definitely think it's worth the extra money to get a travel agent for this, but I'm looking for advice for the flight. What is something you suggest for a flight for us and also for Asher? Keep in mind the flight from Korea to Chicago will be 14 hours...yup. Not for the faint at heart! How the heck will I keep him occupied for 14 hours in a seat?? 5 hour energy will be my friend I suspect :-) At least Chicago to Raleigh is only 2 1/2 hrs!

If you've been to Korea, we would love to know must see places. We've gotten a couple of books and read them, but it's always great to hear about other experiences! I figure if I do a little bit each week of packing and planning, then not only will it hopefully keep me occupied, but I will be prepared when the call comes in. Last week I got all of Asher's laundry done (and crib set up and made!) and I have to admit you couldn't wipe the smile off my face folding those sweet little clothes. Ask me again in a few months when I'm up to my eyeballs in laundry for 5 people if I'm smiling while folding!!!

So, we are waiting without really knowing anything right now. Everything on US side is done and all of the final approvals and documents were sent to the Embassy in Seoul last Friday. Now they will sit waiting until the EP (Emigration Permit) is approved. This is where the mystery is. There was such a backlog from last year (all agencies ran out before the year was over because Korea has been decreasing the amount of EP's every year) and I'm sure everyone sent in EP's from all over. We are still praying Asher was submitted last week, but our agency cannot find any of that out to tell us. They said they will only know when it's approved. If it was indeed submitted last week, we could have approval by the end of the month! Travel call usually comes a week or two after that, so we would be there in February by his birthday! If it was not submitted in January, it would be submitted in February and we would be praying to travel in March. I just feel like we will be there by his birthday. I even bought him a birthday shirt to celebrate with him. I'm trying not to get my hopes up, but at the same time I pray everyday and know that what is impossible with man, is certainly possible with God.

The next few weeks will be nail biting! If we don't hear anything by the first week of February, we know we should be in the next batch for EP's. Please pray with us that he has already been submitted and please please feel free to leave any travel advice with kids you have!!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dreaming of my baby today

And I cannot seem to think of anything else!

I have a great group of adoptive moms in my area and asked if any of them knew how long it takes to get EP approval once you have submitted. I am hearing back around 4 weeks...6 at the most. Really?? Awesome! That means we actually may have a chance of getting Asher by his birthday (Feb 21st)! Of course I know that every situation is different, but this just made me so excited today! Plus getting the official I-600 approval in the mail today made it even better :-)

I feel like I have so much to do. I am sitting down tomorrow and putting together a to do list to keep me accountable and make me feel better about all of it. I need to go back through some of the places to see and do in Korea, figure out what we need to pack and look at some of the hotels and figure out around what our airfare may be if we travel in February. We have his crib up, but everything else is just laying on the floor. Clothes to wash, baby carriers to figure out, his special bag to head is spinning!