The Adoption Option

My spot for thoughts, feelings, rambles, and updates as we journey through the adoption process. Highlights: Dossier arrived in Thailand ~ Sept 26, 2005; Approved ~ October, 2005; Matched ~ August, 2006; Referral received ~ January 2007; Traveled & Home ~ June, 2007; Finalized!! ~ December, 2007

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The waiting game

Well, our referral was mailed out yesturday and might already be in the hands of our agency (hopefully everything went as planned, we paid enough for overnight delivery). Now all the signed paperwork is sent back to Thailand and we start waiting all over again. Hopefully we'll hear about a travel date in about 6 weeks, but don't hold me to it. Anything can happen and time estimates don't mean much, so I've come to learn.

But I have a check list of plenty to keep me busy over the next month or so. 1) Get old dressers ready for sale 2) Buy new dressers 3) rearrange room to make room for the crib 4) Go through Ian's old clothes and try to find appropriate stuff for Jesse (luckily they were born at the same time of year and Ian was on the small side also) 5) Take lots of deep breaths :) - Not in any order.

People say this is the hardest part of the waiting process and I could see that, but right now I'm calm knowing all the papers are accounted for and this really does appear to be happening.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

UPS and other mysteries of the universe

I found it impossible to write this before tonight - it would have been too much for me to process rationally. I just have one question - why is this process, one that's suppose to be happy, riddled with so much pain and frustration? How does that make sense?

As you know from my last post, Friday was suppose to be a very exciting day in our lives. I stayed home for the entire day (Ian and I in our pajamas) and Sam worked from home anxiously awaiting the hero UPS man. We had the camera ready to capture the moment and the delivery man that made it all happen.....needless to say it didn't work out that way. The longer we waited the more confused and angry I was getting. We called UPS a few times and each time it was they same answer "they have until 11:59pm to deliver the package" or "they usually deliver until 9pm" So we just kept waiting and didn't get anywhere. Around 8:45pm, I was freaking out and called UPS - not taking no for an answer. I talked to 3 customer service people before breaking down in tears and getting connecting to a supervisor. I feel bad for that person now because I'm sure she had no idea what to do with me. I was sobbing about the package and the importance. Of course the customer service people are in another state and really can't do anything - but I was not going to accept that at that point. Back and forth and several hours later I was once again sobbing uncontrolably to a UPS customer service supervisor because we found out our package was misplaced. It apparently got put on the wrong truck in the morning and was never relocated during they day. Back at the distribution center no one seemed to know where it was...can you imagine!!!!! I was a mess.

We had to wait until Saturday morning to find out anything else and hope the package was found and put for delivery that day. Luckily, it was and it was guaranteed for noon delivery. Time did not move quickly and poor Ian had no idea what to do with me after seeing me crying the night before. He kept trying to make sure I was feeling happy. Well, we're not sure how or by whom but the package arrived a little after 11am - the doorbell was not rung and no picture was taken (not that I wanted one at that point).

But the point is - we have our referral and will be sending it back to WACAP (via FedEx) tomorrow. It's unreal - we received a short video that was taken in November and a few more pictures from the TRC that were not dated. I'll have plenty of time to fill everyone in on the details over the next couple of months while the next phase of waiting takes place.

Can you even believe this?

Friday, January 26, 2007

Passing the time

Well, we finally learned that our referral took the long way to Seattle. We were told the TRC mailed it regular mail instead of USP or FedEx to get it here faster. Apparently it arrived at our agency yesterday and our referral package was overnighted to us and should get here today. I've been sitting staring out the window for most of the morning - I refuse to leave the house. I also thought this would be a good time to share some happenings of the last few days.

Sharing Jesse's picture has been amazing - the email response from our families and friends could not have been happier and being able to talk about our process in a pro-active way has been amazing. We are no longer just waiting, or know nothing, we are now waiting to travel! We have pictures and a history and information (and hopefully today we'll have some video footage). It a turn in the process I never though would get here - going through the motions are weird. You know there is a baby coming, you know it's going to happen, and you kinda have an idea of what's going to happen - but months and months go by and you think to yourself..."wait, is all this for real? " There is so much downtime, I had to put a lot of it to the back of my mind otherwise I'd have gone even more crazy.

Also - one of the best things happened on Wednesday with my mom. Now my mom knows nothing of technology so I'm not writing this to suck up (because I know she won't read it) but once she had permission to show of Jesse's picture if was like wildfire. I was lucky enough to witness this - I stopped by her work to give her a copy of the picture and she immediatley went around to ever co-worker repeating "This is my future grandson!" "Look at my future grandson".....Not once did she say "adopted" or "from Thailand" or "my daughter's" She owned him - 100% he was hers and she grinned from ear to ear. I nearly started to cry. I know she loves him as much as Ian and always will. I want to remember her, in that moment, forever. It meant a lot to me.

Monday, January 22, 2007

It is a great honor....

to introduce you to my son - Jesse Nutthapong.

Although our hard copy of the referral has still not arrived, I've seen the email scan and feel confident enough to share this with everyone. We are once again in the waiting game - waiting to be invited to travel. And once everything arrives at our agency we'll receive video (which I can't wait for) and hopefully more pictures. But for now I'm on cloud nine and am so happy to be sharing this with everyone. Especially everyone who reads this journal and has supported me through our journey. Oh and his name - Nutthapong is his birth name, we will keep that and give him Jesse as his first name. I wish you could all see how much I'm smiling right this very second. It's like telling everyone I'm pregnant but better because I have this adorable little face to share along with my news!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The wait continues

I feel compelled to write something because in theory there are people coming here looking for pictures....which as you can see, there are none. I'm not sure what's going on except Seattle is frozen and people can't seem to navigate the inclines very well and therefore our agency has been closed. Today people made it to the office but when I spoke with Andrea she hadn't received any mail. She assured me she'd email me when she mails the package to us - which means it could have arrived today with a backlog of other packages that have not been able to be delivered and she'll mail it to us tomorrow...or it could mean it has still not arrived.

I'm trying really hard not to get down or frustrated because really - what is that going to help? There is no more advocating that can be done - no more emails to the TRC to be sent - if it's in the mail it's in the mail. Period. If it's not for some reason in the mail - then I have no idea what's going on and again my happiness about traveling in the Spring (which to me means April) are dwindling. I know technically Spring could include May but I don't want it it doesn't.

So we'll just keep waiting.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Close but no cigar

Well - turns out we might have jumped the gun slightly. Andrea was able to make it to the office but it turns out the package waiting for her was NOT for us. She doesn't seem concerned because she did receive the emailed version but it appears the referral itself is still in transit. I'm hoping we'll receive it by the end of next week. So for now, we just keep waiting and hoping everything arrives safely and quickly.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Curses Mother Nature

Well, I know our referral is safe and sound in Andrea's office. The package arrived yesturday in Seattle but it was her day off - the a giant snow storm hit that area and the offices shut down today. Depending on weather, Andrea may get to the office tomorrow but because of no-mail-monday (also known at Martin Luther King Day) chances are we will not receive anything until mid-next week. Bummer, but what can you do. I doubt a few extra days will make that much of a difference and there is no point endangering lives to mail me a piece of paper. I mean, as much as I would like to believe it I know the world does not revolve around me :) I'm still having a hard time believing all this is happening, but to have a snow storm in Seattle to top it all off is almost laughable.

I did find out a few more details from the referral, but I want to put everything together in one post - so you'll just have to stay tuned a little longer :)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

It's in the mail - REALLY

I never thought these words would be real - that this moment would actually come but it's true we recevied word that our referral is in the mail currently on it's way to our agency in Seattle. Andrea received an emailed version but the scan was too bad to read anything - so we'll have to wait a few more days to find out everything but that doesn't even bother me. I just can't believe this is finally happening. We'll receive a package from Andrea that will include pictures and video taken from their November trip plus all the information from the TRC plus everything we need to do from this point on. It should take about 2 months for our paperwork to travel through the social services system in Thailand and then we'll be invited to travel - should be before the end of April (if not sooner). I want to jump out of my skin and I don't even have anything real yet. By this time next week I will be able to post a picture of my second son. How amazing is that? Stay tuned for more information :)

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

If it's not one thing

Okay I just need to vent - so please excuse all the emotional spillage I'm about to dump out on this page. Turns out my New Year's outburst was a little premature - our agency is fairly certain that the bombings in Bangkok will do nothing to effect our process. I should have known better - by now you'd think I'd understand that the government over there works completely differently than ours and not to think in context of how the US would respond. Fortunatley it's not the same at all. Although I still don't think the mystery behind the bombings is solved, it doesn't appear to be an ongoing event.

However, after finally looking into some paperwork that I've been bugging Sam about for months it turns out we are already behind on renewing some things. Our fingerprints that were run through the FBI and National Security have expired and our open file with the FBI will expire in February. It's not a short happy processes for these papers and the ultimate approval we are waiting for (the I-171H) could take over a month to receive. This is going back to the one orphan officer in Cook County that processes these requests - apparently she's a little bogged down at the moment because our friends who recently finished this for the first time waited even longer than we did a year and a half ago. It's also a very expensive piece to this puzzle of paperwork we've been putting together for nearly 2 years.

We've just waited so long for everything to fall into place and to be this close to the finish line and to have to worry about these stupid approvals coming through....makes me crazy, angry, sad, and annoyed. I know once we travel and have our boy home it'll seem to small compared to the rest of the life we will have with him but it's really draining the first time around when you are trying to get things started. To have to deal with this crap when you are trying to get things finished seems so unfair and brings up all those emotions about being judged. All the hoops are bad enough one time around but to have been doing this so long we have to go through it again....there are no words.

Our agency has received no word about the status of our referral. Andrea says she's bugging them but either she's not getting a response or not getting any worthwhile information. I wish I could just get on a plane and set up house over in Bangkok. I keep thinking what's holding me back - my 4 hours of work each week at they Y? Ian's pre-school? Nothing but pure fear and finances - an evil combination (and the fact that living in a strange country, not speaking the language, and being a half a world away from Sam....I guess all that falls under fear). But what I wouldn't do for a free plane ticket to just go give him a hug.