Our home study reached us yesterday. Tomorrow I will mail it on to immigration. I pretty much have our dossier documents completed so I will get those apostilled and send them on to country to be translated. When immigration approves us, I will send their approval to country. Then we will wait for the country to give us an appointment date. It seems pretty simple, but we're assuming we will actually travel around January.
I've been thinking I should write a little more about why Caleb. My biggest question in regards to adoption was, "How do you choose?" There are so many children in the world that need families and we just wanted to make that number one less. But to choose...
I have read many amazing stories where God clearly placed a child with a particular family. Or where a family just clicked over a particular child. Or where circumstances changed and changed and lo and behold, this child fell into this person's lap. I had looked at waiting child lists for years, but I was left with: how do you choose?
There was one other time (maybe a year and a half ago now) when I felt that two children could be ours. They were siblings: one between Titus and Kali in age and one between Kali and Ella in age. And they were little Roma children--I can't help it, I love the Roma people! And I went to Matt, asking him to consider and telling him that I thought they could be ours. And it was one week before I was scheduled to have the Essure procedure done... and boy, did we have a talk. And a talk.
I look at that experience with such thankfulness, because I found out that my husband was not so excited about adoption... or ever wanting to adopt. Which was a really important conversation to have with a procedure that would stop us from having any more biological kids on the horizon. It also showed that we had a lot of misunderstandings between us: I had thought he was open to adoption in the future; he told me that he didn't really want more children. Needless to say, there was much talking to be had. And just over a year later, it was Matt that told me to go ahead and begin the adoption process. Who knows how much longer I would have put it off? Sometimes it's hard for me to actually take the big steps and make the giant decisions.
Oh, and we didn't adopt those little Roma children. ;)
(And just for followup, I don't think they were on the waiting child list for more than a few days.)
We started the adoption process earlier this year after we inquired about a three year old Moldovan boy. His agency sent photos and some information. He was adorable, but he just didn't stand out to us in a way that had us moving forward for him. So we began the adoption process, planning to be matched with a child from Moldova--one way to avoid choosing. That fell through (making me wonder if God was going to throw us something from left field) so we started look at little African boys on waiting child lists--none stood out from any other, but I assumed we'd pursue one of them.
Then right before bed one night, I remembered Reece's Rainbow. I hadn't been to their site in awhile, but I thought that since we were now actively working on adopting, I should cover our bases and look at their waiting children. I was 99% sure that our child wouldn't be there, but I felt the need to be thorough. I was making a note of children to show Matt the next day when I saw his profile. And that was it. I don't know what to say; it could be that he shares a birthday with Titus that stopped me.
And a little back story: there had been a little Roma boy on Reece's Rainbow months earlier that I had prayed for (and shared to Facebook for prayer for) and spent a lot of time researching "spastic tetraparesis" cerebral palsy for. Before this point, I would not have even looked at cerebral palsy as an option, but this little boy really touched my heart. I talked with Matt about him on a few occasions, but ultimately I realized that my desire to parent this little boy hinged on the likelihood that we could find a treatment for him that would enable him to walk. That may sound shallow to some, but that's where I was. When I realized this, I continued to pray for this little boy and his future family, but recognized that it was not us. (Side note: this little boy's family was just assigned their travel date to go to country and get him!)
So when I saw Caleb's profile... and his birthday matched Titus'... and he looked like one of my children... and he had cerebral palsy, but he clearly wanted to stand... and he could grasp the bars of his crib and pull himself up... my heart clenched. My heart clenched and the other children faded away. I could not get this one little boy out of my mind. I could not get this one little boy off of my heart. I could not get this one little boy out of my mind or off of my heart.
When I told Matt about him the next day, he was immediately on board. I spent the next day or two, reminding my husband of every difficulty we could possibly face and challenging him with, "Are you sure?" And we were sure.
I can't say I've been that sure this entire time during all of this paperwork and waiting, but I've never even considered changing my mind. And I can't say for sure how things will pan out. Hopefully, we'll come through to the other side with giant praise reports and exclamations of how he was always meant to be ours. I don't know what the future holds. But it wasn't until I saw this little boy that I felt the peace and strength to move forward. And I'm trusting God will give us all that we need in order to love and cherish and parent this little boy.