A lot has happened this week! I got my fingerprints updated for Joaquin's immigration. I told the guy that I would probably see him again in a couple of weeks when I come back to do my fingerprints for Sofia's adoption-yep!! My home study finally got approved of all the amendments. Ind*a is really, really picky about some things, especially when it comes to culture. I completely understand, especially adopting an older child, that they want the children to have a strong sense of their cultural identity and self-esteem. Lucky for me, a couple of my regulars at the restaurant are from Hyderabad and they let me in on an organization that is in Mason that is solely dedicated to preserving the culture and language of T*lugu speaking people - the language that Sofia speaks! They have two really big celebrations and they are all about the children being the center of the show. I can't wait to see Sofia decked out in her Indian dress participating in the dances! They also have a lot of other cultural activities that will help Sofia keep ties to Ind*a and her first language.
So now that my home study has been approved, my agency will file the I-800a for her immigration. They say it takes about 2 months to get approval. They also said that about my I-600a for Nepal but if you remember, that took 1 day! My dossier is complete and I'm just waiting on the apostilled documents to come back from the capital. In order to officially accept her referral, I need the I-800a approval with my dossier. I have this welling sense of excitement- I'm still holding back but it seems like everything is moving forward!
I had a webinar with Joaquin's adoption agency and other PAPS in the Congo group. It was awesome! They told us that they have 80 of their 112 kiddos referred to families!!! Praise the Lord!! They also now have 2 orphanages to accommodate the children. In the last month, things have started picking up. Many families are traveling or just got back and let me tell you, the pictures they've posted of the children are ADORABLE!!! I also found out that they expect me to have a referral by May!! YAHOO!!! I don't know how long it will be from referral to travel though because every other family so far has had different Time lines. That's Africa for you! When I was in Kenya way back in the 90's, I bought a bumper sticker at the market that said, "I'm on Africa time." Who knew that would come back to bite me 20 years later:)
I have to say that I'm loving the fact that spring has come early here. I look at my peonies forging their way up, the buds on all of my rose bushes, and I can't help but think of new beginnings.
I really think this spring will mark a new beginning for me and my soon-to-be children!