Friday, June 27, 2014

The Pain of Having to Choose

There's only one thing I envy about biological parenthood.

It's not having kids who look like you and your spouse.

It's not pregnancy, or childbirth, or breastfeeding. (I'm super okay with not having to endure any of that, especially after my little taste of typhoid vaccine induced stomach troubles.)

It's not the fact that they don't have to do a home study, fill out a bunch of paperwork, pay a bunch of money, and fly halfway across the world three times.  In fact, we're looking forward to seeing the sights in Bishkek and Almaty.

It's not even the guarantee of raising an infant from birth.

No, it's the fact that they don't have to choose.

They don't have to assess a referral and say "no" to one child and "yes" to another.  Instead, they have the tremendous blessing, weather they see it or not, of being able to simply accept what comes their way and know that it is what was meant for them.

They don't have to look at a child's file, or an email from someone at the agency and think "Is this right for us?"  "Are these the children we should accept?"  "Is this what God wants us to do?"  "Are we bad Christians if we say no?"

Never, at any point, does a parent through biological means have to choose which child they are going to raise, which child they are going to make their own.

For all that people might joke about how wonderful it must be to choose your children, it isn't wonderful at all.

Trust me.

We've said no twice now.

The first was on our wedding anniversary -- it was a pair of unrelated children, who are both at the upper end of our age range.  With the difficulties that unrelated pairs often face in integrating into a family (especially if they're a bit older) and the fact that we want at least one little one, it made logical sense to pass.  It wasn't an official referral, just a "we've heard about two children" conversation. 

It was agony to say no, especially for me.  I beat myself up for it, even with our social worker telling us that it wasn't a good fit. 

I did get past it, but I still wonder about those two children, and I hope they're okay and that they both get adopted.

Then yesterday, we got this "hey, we heard about these kids" email from the agency.  This time, it was three children, one who possibly has a serious illness.  While I would LOVE to be the mother of three children (or more, even), going from 0 to 3 seems like a rough go, especially with our families all being over an hour away (my parents are seven hours away!) and my husband working so many hours and commuting so far.  That, combined with the possible (probable?) illness, meant that we had to say no this time as well.

It hurt less this time.  Much less.

Enough that I had to wonder -- is this hardening my heart?  Will I, by the end of all this, become someone cold and calculating?

And why did no one warn us about how terrible it is to have to choose?

I don't know what the answer is to any of this -- but it does seem like families get through this, like things are okay in the end.

But I wish that discussing turning down referrals wasn't such a taboo in the adoption community.  Because maybe, if we discussed it more, we could realize that none of us are alone.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Percieved Perks

I always figured that there were two little perks to adoption over childbirth. 

1) Not getting sick to your stomach.

2) Getting to drink at your baby shower.

Lets just say that those better be some fan-freakin'-tastic margaritas, because perk number one just took a good, long hike.

Why, you ask, is adoption making me sick to my stomach?

Oh, this isn't some metaphorical post about how I hate waiting and it makes my stomach churn. 

Nope, this is a post about the oral typhoid vaccine.

It's unfair, I tell you.  My mother never got sick during her pregnancy, and here I am, feeling like death warmed over from our travel vaccine.  Ha!  Joke's on me, I guess.

Apparently, about one percent of patients have a negative reaction.  I am the 1%.  I expect the Occupy protesters to break down my door any minute now.  I don't think I'd have the energy to fight them off...

Monday, June 23, 2014

Delivered and Signed For!

Drumroll please!
*baaaa rump!*
It made it!
After a slight hiccup of a failed delivery with no one to sign for the package, it's been picked up and signed for!

I don't know how long it will take for our dossier to be officially registered with the Kyrgyzstani government, but I can't wait to hear that it has been.  :)
P.S. The silly little JPEG above is courtesy my very excited father!  I haven't been the only one obsessively clicking "refresh" on the DHL tracking site.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

It's in Bishkek!

After Midlands, our dossier was taken to the London airport (Heathrow) where it was shipped directly to Bishkek.  We didn't get any scans or updates when it was Sunday in Kyrgyzstan, but by early Monday (their time) it was with the delivery courier and on its way to its final destination.  :)

Friday, June 20, 2014

Our Dossier Made it to England!

Moving pretty quickly now!

Our little package has been received, processed, and shipped out from Midlands, UK!
I weirdly imagine it flying over London at night like in Peter Pan.  :p

The Dossier Shipped!

After a detour in Sacramento for authentication, and a stop at our agency in Colorado to be double and triple checked -- our dossier shipped this afternoon, and already it's in Ohio!

Godspeed to Bishkek, little bundle of joy!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

This is what waiting looks like...


Two empty rooms, and we don't even know what color to paint them, so they've stayed the way they were when we bought our home in 2011.  Stayed that way, just waiting.

Now our dossier is complete and in the hands of our agency to be reviewed.  Assuming everything passes muster, the documents will be authenticated and shipped to Kyrgyzstan soon.  Then, within three months of the receipt of our dossier, we hope to have a referral, which will tell us how to paint and furnish the rooms (since we don't know age and gender yet).

Hopefully we -- and our empty rooms -- won't wait much longer!