It’s probably a good thing I didn’t blog for a few days. Those were not my best days of the process so far, and any time I thought about writing, I didn’t feel as though I had anything constructive to say. We had no progress to share (only crazy stories about our efforts to make progress), I was not in the mood for fun updates or any cute kid photo posts (don’t worry, you’ll still get to see those), and I didn’t have the right frame of mind for some of the more reflective pieces I’m working on, so… silence.
A new weariness set in during those quiet days. It’s not a weariness that comes from having 4 young children, or from having 4 young children in a foreign country for that matter (that’s tiring though for sure). It’s also not a weariness from the loss of conveniences I love and rely on (though I do have a list of those things that I miss and more deeply appreciate now). This is so different. It’s a weariness from a long and ever-changing process that has occupied much of my time and mental space for almost 2 years. This process is grueling, and I’ve been grumpy about it for 2 days. Now I’m back in the saddle, ready to get this thing done.
One of the hardest parts about the process in-country is that it seems that policy and procedure are always changing here. So, though we are working with amazing lawyers, drivers, social workers, etc who have navigated their way through all of this before, the continual shifts are hard to stay on top of and thus it feels like we are continually being tossed about, to and fro. It seems as though everyone requires different things (often times coming up with new, unexpected requirements on the spot) and that their is no guarantee when it comes to timelines and what to expect. All of this is “normal” and I knew it before we came, but living in it for an extended period of time is challenging. It’s hard for people back home that we don’t know the exact date and time of our arrival, though it is hopefully only 2 weeks away. We likely won’t know we will be getting on a plane until just a few days before the actual departure. It’s not how I normally do things and is certainly not my preference, but this is the norm for Ugandan adoption. I’m trying to embrace that.
Today I’m embracing it more fully, though it’s just because we have some good news and some progress (wish I could say I’ve reached some new level of enlightenment or something, ha). The kids passports are in hand (got those yesterday, though they were a week later than we had anticipated), and we completed our IOM health screenings today (we went straight from picking up the passports to file the required paperwork at IOM, a very good move as we were able to get an appointment next day). The next and final part of the process is with the US Embassy. While it is a very extensive part of the process, it is very clearly spelled out, and I know what is required of us. I feel very well prepared, so, as far as it depends on us, things look good. We just aren’t sure about the timeline because we a) don’t know how many days it will take for the IOM screening results to be filed with the embassy b) don’t know how far out our appointment to file the embassy paperwork will be c) dont know how long after that we will be scheduled for our interview d) don’t know if the embassy will require any further information before issuing visas (I hear it’s common that they ask for more, but again, I’m confident that we have been extremely thorough and that our preparation will give them what they need to make a determination on our case).
So the next few days, our main priorities are to celebrate Owen (it’s his 5th birthday tomorrow and we are ready to laugh and play and be appointment-free), to fill out a bunch of paperwork, and to practice the art of waiting. Embracing crazy-waiting. #workingonit