Sunday, August 26, 2007

What a day!

2 years ago on this date, we had finally completed all of our paperwork to send to China. Our "paper chase", as it is called, had many ups and downs and twists and turns, and we were sooooo relieved that we'd finally had every paper reviewed, stamped, notarized, certified and authenticated. Our paper chase lasted about 8 months or so, just about twice as long as we'd anticipated. When our dossier (mountain of papers) left for China on August 26, 2005 the wait time to receive a referral was a steady, predictable 6 months. We started planning for our March 2006 referral, thinking we'd travel at the beginning of May 2006.

As the months unfolded, it became increasingly evident China had different plans for the process, which they began implementing about the time we sent in our dossier. Of course, they don't actually communicate these plans with anyone. It's like a mystery in which you a get a small piece of the puzzle each month when referrals come in.

March 2006 came and went, and we were still very far back in the line of parents waiting for their referral (pictures and info. on the baby you've been matched with). I've written before about some of the emotions and struggles the wait held for us, so I won't go into it all here, but just say it was very difficult at times. By December of 2006 some of our paperwork began to expire and we had to make the choice to redo it to stay in the process. OK, tears now rolling, thinking we could have made a different choice.

We did redo our paperwork, and on January 3, 2007 we saw Piper Grace's picture for the first time. And on February 26, 2007 we held her for the first time - exactly 6 months ago. I really can't believe it's only been 6 months. I feel like I have always known her and loved her. I truly believe that during all those months of waiting, God was growing her not below my heart, but in it, as the poem says.

Happy 6 months home, sweet girl, and also to your 9 buddies from Xiushan who have traveled the same road home as you!
In another family milestone, Scott turned 40 yesterday! He played golf in the morning and we had a family party for him last night. 40, wow, honey you just get better every year - can't wait to see what you're like at 80! I kind of like being married to a 40 year old, makes me feel so grown up, and yet WAY younger than he is, you know, 3 years is A LOT younger.
And tomorrow - Hunter's first day of school - 1st grade! It is milestone crazy over here. We met his teacher, let's call her Mrs. Smith, on Friday. I so love her already!
God is good, my friends.


Isabella's Mommy & Daddy said...

Can't believe it has been 6 months...
This is such a LONG journey.. but I see through everyone else's eyes that the long road is SOOOOOO worth every second and painful times..
Happy 6 Months..

Christie said...

I'm so glad you renewed that paperwork too! I remember sitting at your kitchen table and talking about how in the dark you felt about the whole process - well, I'm thinking it's pretty amazing to look back and see what all of that was worth!!

Can't wait to join you!

Anonymous said...

You and your family are truely blessed. What a great family of 5!