The official process- paperwork and all that fun stuff started in January of this year. We had applied to our agency (who we've now left) and were accepted, and we started our home study in January. That took about 3 months with all the paperwork and meeting with our social worker 3 times. Things had been (until last week!) really slow... we were fundraising and it was taking forever. We were gathering documents needed and when we got the funds, moving to the next step. We assumed it would be at least another year before we saw our daughter's face and maybe even another year before we went to get her.
At times I wondered if we were even suppose to be adopting. Was God not providing the funds because this wasn't His plan? Or were those thoughts Satan trying to weasel his way in? We decided to push through until every door was closed, and if that happened, it'd be God.
And then I learned more about the woman I'm working with now (D) and how she was finding referrals in a few days. To me it made sense.... there are SO many orphans in DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo). That's when I started vaguebooking on Facebook about prayer for guidance and wisdom. We lost a good chunk of money leaving our agency. It would've been great if we were able to go this route to begin with, but obviously we'd have no way of getting connected to these women who live and work in DRC without the connections I had because of our agency. God definitely had His hands in this! As I was praying and trying to decide if this is what we were suppose to be doing, we
The referral for Elizabeth was official on June 14th, just 3 days after emailing D for the first time. What a mighty God we serve!
Since then it's been nonstop, I've been driving all over town, making copies, getting documents scanned, to the post office, to the bank, back to our house, back to the post office, back to make copies. Seriously, it never stops! We did get to take a "break" yesterday to celebrate Father's Day. We took the girls to 6 Flags, which was a lot of fun, but we learned they aren't a fan of water parks, so next time we'll skip that part of the park!
On Saturday we received a letter from Immigration, letting us know they got our application for fingerprinting, and they got our money, and we'll be getting another letter from them in 2-3 weeks with an appointment date to go get the fingerprinting done. Yay! We have 3 documents left to get in our possession before our dossier will be done and ready to translate. One of them is a form that will come after our fingerprinting appointment. The other is Andrew's passport. We were slackers and waited to renew it, so now we're getting it renewed and paying extra to expedite it so we don't have to wait on it. The 3rd is our GBI report (Georgia Bureau of Investigation), that our old agency has and should be sending to us now that we've terminated our contract with them. Praying that they don't make things difficult, I've heard they are tough to get a hold of these days with so many people leaving....
We are hoping to have the dossier done and sent in by the end of the summer. That's fast, but that's what we're praying for!
When I'm not running around like a crazy person (really... crazy. Ask the guy behind the counter at the post office today who I cried in front of.... or the customer service people at Kroger who have dealt with the Western Union mix ups for me, while Alexis and Kaitlyn whine, cry, touch everything, and/or dance in the way of other customers), I'm working on fundraising stuff! I've been working on crafts to sell at our benefit concert (June 30th at 6pm for my local readers... come out and help bring our daughter home!!!-- and invite your friends!)
We're also still collecting donations for our yard sale. The yard sale will be either the 1st or 2nd weekend in July, depending on when Andrew can get the morning off work. We'll keep you updated on all the fundraising!
If you could please keep us in your prayers, we would really appreciate it! Pray for us, pray for Elizabeth, pray for her caregivers, pray for funding, and pray that all the government agencies involved will be speedy. If you'd like to pray specifically, pray that everything will go smoothly and quickly and we'll have our baby girl home for Christmas! That's best case scenario, but that's the case we're praying for!
p.s.- Thank you SOOOOOO much for all the prayers and support thus far!