It's killing me to sit still at the computer to write this, but I know all of you adoption blog-stalkers are itching for the details of our REFERRAL today......
First....we received a referral for a little girl who just turned 6 years old. Some of the details are still a blur, so I'm not sure on alot of it yet (they're overnighting us a packet of info)....but we're not allowed to publish her picture or name(?) until we pass through the Ethiopian courts....however, if you see us in person, we'll be showing the picture to everyone!!
She has these eyes that scrunch up when she smiles, but you can still see them sparkling. It's hard to tell much about her hair from the picture we have - it's in corn rows, andn she's wearing a Thomas the Tank Engine sweatshirt. She has a toothy grin with a 5-6 year old's teeth - gaps and all! So, so sweet!!
So, this morning Todd and I were juggling schedules and the one car, so I was a little late for work (and a little grumpy). I checked my email around lunch time and saw that there had been a referral from our agency for Misty. I remember thinking that our families seemed to begin this adoption journey around the same time....I'm always thinking about which families we might get to travel with....but they had gotten on the list lots earlier than us, and there are many names ahead of us on the adoption list. About 30 minutes later, I was on the phone with a client, but saw my cell phone light up with Children's Hope in the caller ID. I was excited for about .5 seconds, until reality hit and I thought about Misty, who had waited for 29 weeks, compared to my measly 13 weeks. "It's way too early to start jumping every time the phone rings", is what I told myself.
I listened to the voicemail - Erin had a quick question and wanted me to call her back. When I did, I got her voicemail and left a message. About 10 minutes later, she called me back.
E: Gretchen, you requested a 3-5 year old....but you're approved for a 2-6 year old. How are you feeling about that? Are you wanting to stay in that range?
Me: Well, I think we'd be willing to go up to 6...but I better talk to Todd.
E: Yes, you need to talk to Todd. You'll be home at 2? When you get home, talk about it and then call me back this afternoon. Can you do that?
Me: Yeeees....(now getting suspicious)....Erin, you're making me want to go home now...should I go home now?
E: Yes, you might want to go home now.
Okay, so the next couple of hours involved talking and praying about adopting a child a little bit older than what we had been thinking....6 isn't that much older than 5....but 6 seems much older than 3....but a child is a child...but what if....
We called Erin back and told her we'd be happy with 2-6.
E: Great! Then I've got a referral for you!!
We know she's 5 or 6 and her Ethiopian name means "conscience" or "understanding"....she's just been at the orphanage for less than a month and had been living with her mother until then. The orphanage says she's observant, a good listener, and beautiful!!
The next step is that we'll be assigned a court date and then a few weeks later we'll go bring her home! I haven't been paying enough attention to how long that's been taking other families, but we're wondering if we might able to bring her home before the end of the year.....what an amazing Christmas this will be!!
We introduced the girls to their new sister as soon as they got off the school bus, and they were SO excited to finally put a face to Peanut!
Tonight we sat around the dinner table and wrote our "welcome to the family notes" to Peanut. It was so sweet to hear the girls read theirs and talk about how long they'd been praying for their new sister and how excited they are to meet here. Our good friends, the Greens, brought a celebratory ice cream cake and let us gush....
Feeling thankful, amazed, clueless, and scared to death.....