**Wow, I've been overwhelmed with all the support, love and EMAILS I've received since going and returning to Ethiopia...I've had such a wide range of questions and SO MANY of them...that I couldn't possibly answer them all UNLESS I either hire a blog secretary, a maid, a nanny or a second wife for my hubby...SO...SINCE NONE OF THE ABOVE is ABOUT to happen...well, then...I get stuck with an "inbox" FULL on my BLOG ACCOUNT..and well...me UNABLE to answer them all....So...let me HIT some of the most popular questions in the last few weeks and SEE IF that helps some:
1. How can YOU also find your child's birth family? Well...this is a sensitive matter and one you really need to talk to your agency about!! Some situations I know are better left alone..and others could really benefit by KNOWING your child's birth family. Again, I can't share my "contact" that found LL's birth family....He wants to keep anonymous...but I am sure that IT ISN'T impossible IF you put your mind to something to find someone to help you too!! BUT...read my old posts on WARNINGS and really think through
ALL that could go WRONG..then weigh your risks! Hope this helps!!
2. How did I get a FAST referral?? Ok, so here's the SCOOP....LOTS of agencies, including CCI, have little to NO wait for BOYS over 12 months!! AGCI (our agency for LL) was the same way for a while. People could get INSTANT referral for BOYS cause NO ONE was waiting for them. This isn't TRUE for all agencies. Some have really LONG waits for boys NOW too. And, ALMOST ALL have pretty long waits for GIRLS....BUT..if you do your homework (like I did) you will find that LOTS of agencies STILL have NO WAIT going for BOYS over 12 months. CCI had two boys on her wait list (on line) before I left town for Ethiopia...one was 9 months old..the other was 15 months...they were ONLY waiting because NO ONE was waiting for a boy that old...crazy huh?? I would have certainly snagged one of those precious boys...but someone beat me to them!! :) The most popular thing to request in adoption world is "0-12 month healthy GIRL"...which is exactly WHAT we requested for LL!! And, that's WHAT we got!!! This time around...I knew I'd be OPEN TO MORE THINGS!! So, our guy IS NOT a 0-12 month healthy boy!! He is OVER 12 months and has SEVERAL Medical issues we are/and will be dealing with!! I don't really want to SHARE his medical issues in blog land because LOTS of his medical issues are STILL UNKNOWN!! And, we probably WON'T know everything UNTIL HE IS HOME!! Now, there are some apparent issues that ANYONE that looked at him (in person..or in CERTAIN pics I took for my dr. to look at ) would SEE right away!! So, with that said...Yes, our guy is OLDER than what people are waiting for...and YES, he has SEVERAL special medical issues that might make him LESS desirable for someone else!!! BUT for us....well...I thought he was PERFECT!! :) Maybe NOT perfect for the majority of people WAITING on referrals in this world...but certainly perfectly made for us...ISSUES and ALL!!! :) I was "assuming" that most people KNEW that CCI (and a lot of other agencies) had literally NO ONE waiting on older BOYS....and KNEW that they almost ALWAYS give boy referrals out quickly...BUT certainly...any BOY that is older AND has "special needs" will be "waiting" on a family to FIND HIM!!!
**My advice on this matter: FIRST and FOR MOST pray about WHERE God has your child!!! I have felt CERTAIN both times about Where our children were!!! SOME people MUST hit the long wait lists..cause that is WHERE their child is!!! Others may be called to "lesser known" agencies that have shorter or NO waits!! Either way...if you pray to God about it...He won't steer YOU in the wrong direction!! And, NO, you CAN'T travel and JUMP AHEAD of anyone on the wait list....it must work out that YOU are paper ready (I actually started working on paper work and started meeting with our social worker BEFORE I left) AND...a child is WAITING with NO ONE ahead of you SEEKING that specific CHILD!!!! That's simply it!!! Now with that said...ALL OF YOU CAN HAVE INSTANT REFERRAL IF you go to CCI's wait list and CHOOSE a waiting child (and you qualify, of course, for the Ethiopian program)...OR go to ANY other agency's wait list and CHOOSE a waiting child...These children MAY be waiting because of special medical needs, AGE, gender, or because they come in a SIBLING GROUP!! Pray over WHAT God is calling YOU to HANDLE!! I was totally ONLY comfortable the first time around adopting a "healthy" child...I wouldn't EVEN consider anything else..and I was skipped over with children because of that....BUT...I think God gave me my LL experience to prepare me for my "wes" experience...I am ready for more...and I can only ASK all of you to continue to PRAY WES HOME...His malnutrition and medical needs is WHY there is a 'button' for this adoption...NO NEED for a button with LL...BUT...my sweet little Wes could use ALL OUR PRAYERS!! Hope this answers some of your questions...and I apologize IF I EVER led anyone to wonder or "believe" that I "skipped" over anyone...I should have mentioned CCI's NO WAIT for older boy LIST...and that my buddy has special medical circumstances!! Thank you for understanding!! :)
3. How do you get a dossier DONE so fast? The secret is..i started BEFORE I left...yes...I got LOTS done BEFORE I left...just incase!! AND, I have completed an Ethiopian adoption before..and my social worker here is WONDERFUL and FAST...and well...I KNEW what I was doing this time around...I've done it all before!! :)
***Ok, so SINCE my heart is with WAITING CHILDREN these days....I wanted to tell you ALL about a waiting child I met..and had the privilege of spending MANY HOURS WITH!! This little guy, "H", has some pretty severe special needs...and well...he broke my heart while we were there!! I had LOTS of guilt about this little guy....cause I asked God lots of times "WHY?" Why am I willing to take on SOME ISSUES and NOT OTHERS!! I obviously do believe our little Wes deserves a home too...but WHAT ABOUT THIS GUY?? WHO WILL COME FOR HIM? I could say, "well, God didn't CALL ME to those BIG of issues!" But isnt' that really just a cop out!! It was no big deal when the "special needs" were "on line" and not in my face!! But THEN I drove in the car with this little guy for HOURS!! I cleaned him up when he GOT SICK all over himself...I ate with him laying across a chair beside me...I saw him SMILE...yet...I knew I COULDN'T ADOPT HIM!! Oh, the guilt!! We began our trip with MEETING THIS WAITING CHILD!! We stopped off at our first orphanage and allowed this nanny to clean him up from being so sick:
He couldn't sit up...he couldn't keep focus on our face...yet...he smiled!! I know he'll need LOTS of therapy..but I KNOW he'll improve some with the medical attention and therapy he so NEEDS! It's important to know that he may NEVER improve to look like what we Americans think is "normal" but I DO KNOW he MUST have more potential than this:
He's thought to be OVER 3 yrs. old now...I asked myself SO MANY times on that trip, "Isn't his life worth it?" "Isn't he valued by God just as much as my LL or my little tiny Wes?!!"
**It was a hard BUT realistic way to kick off our trip!! It opened my eyes RIGHT AWAY to the children that were "waiting" because of their special needs...and maybe, just maybe..God used this sweet little boy to prepare us for what we'd see in our little Wes!!? Who knows...but I KNOW this boy needs a family!! He needs someone to think he's worth it and wonderful!! Can yall help me find this little guy a home? Does anyone KNOW anyone that would step up for him?? Now don't put words in my mouth...but I even heard that CCI (sue) loves this guy so much AND wants him to have a home badly enough that she'd be willing to CUT FEES for him to find a family...I don't REALLY know what that means...but I'd email Sue and ask her...cause we were all emotional over this little guy when we talked about it....BUT...don't let MONEY stand in the way...Email and ask some questions IF you think he could be YOUR SON!! He's thought to have CP and some other issues going on as well!!! Praying for this little guy!! You can email Sue@celebratechildren.org to learn MORE about this guy!!
And, remember...there are LOTS of waiting children on almost ALL agency's list!!! Pray about WHAT God is calling YOU to do!! And, look and pray over those waiting children...cause you just never know when ONE MIGHT SPEAK TO YOU..and be YOUR CHILD!!!
***Ok, I KNOW I've ONLY touched about half your questions...but these were some of the MOST popular..so I thought I'd better answer them BEFORE my "inbox" spilled over!! :) Thanks again for ALL your love, support and prayers for our new little guy coming home...I don't know WHEN that will happen...but we pray it's sooner than later!! :) Oh...and fyi...If ALL you thousands of people run and sign up on CCI's "short or no wait" boy list...well..then the wait WILL BE LONG!!! :) So, just know that!! If her list ends up LONG in the next month or so...don't say I didn't warn ya!! :) LOL
Happy Thursday to you all, kj