I thought you guys might be wondering what is going on with the adoption, so I wanted to do an update. We've been working hard on getting the necessary paperwork done. Busy, busy, busy! Although this isn't the first or even the second time we've been down this road, this is our 3rd adoption and WOW! Is there a difference!! Previously, while living in the states, things were much simpler!! A ton of paperwork, yes, but not all that complicated! Now that we live here in China, things are REALLY much more difficult and complicated! It's like pulling teeth to get what we need. Not impossible, just more work. Getting simple paperwork suddenly turns in a much bigger task! And the biggest problem is not knowing exactly how it all works in our situation here since we are so different than the normal adoption.
The home-study is nearing completion. Our social worker now has everything she needs to complete it and she tells us we will get, at least the first draft, by the first week of November. As soon as we receive the completed home-study, we will be able to apply for grants. Yeah!! Keep those in your prayers!
We have been working on one particular piece of paperwork for a long time now. It is our local, here in the village, security clearance. It is, no doubt, the first time they told us they've ever been requested to do something like this. There's been much feet dragging and I was beginning to think we'd never be able to get one and then what would we do?!! Finally, on Friday they gave very specific instructions on where to go to get it done. They will not be doing it, but are sending us to Beijing to get it done. Things just work so differently here than in the states. It's no surprise as it is something we commonly run into here. Anyway, it matters not to me as long as we get it done!! So we've filed that paperwork and expect it back at the end of next week. Yippee!!
We also have to have a security clearance from Missouri where we lived so many years. We are still working on how to get that since we aren't there. Hopefully this week we'll get more direction. You know, previously, we'd just go down there to the Hwy patrol and get fingerprinted, pay the fee, and come back and pick it up in a few days. Now that we don't live there, we're trying to figure out how it can be done. We, just last week, had a security clearance ran by a security agency showing no record, but was not acceptable due to the fact that it wasn't on the hwy patrol's letterhead. You guys know how picky things must be done for adoptions!! Anyway, we hope to have more direction and instructions sometime next week on how to go about it since we aren't there. This process is WAY more complicated than before when we actually lived in the states!! It was a piece of cake compared to living here and trying to get things done. We still do not know how it is all going to work out, but trust that it will!
Then there's the extra fees involved because we live out of the country!! If you thought that adoption was expensive already, it is more so when you live out of the country. We're beginning to find that out while doing some of these things. There are extra fees involved that we didn't realize (I"m NOT implying that our agency hasn't been upfront about all our fees. They have been. That is not the case at all. We are a special case and we are finding that extra fees are involved due to shipping and the extra costs involved in foreign documents) and perhaps the original total we mentioned may not be high enough. I guess time will tell though as we document everything we're spending on paper. Then there's people who mistakenly think that our costs will be much cheaper since we live here. Oh, how I WISH that were the case!! Some have said, "Well, hey, you don't have to pay for the airfare and stuff. That should save alot!" But...........while that seems to reason, it is not the case. In order to make the adoption final, we must bring her onto US soil and go through Immigration. Therefore, we DO need to make a trip to the states, and.........hey! we'd like to come back home again, here in China! So you see, we don't really save anything on airfare when you come to realize all that, huh?!
We're just taking this one day at a time!! Of course, as fast as possible though!! How come no one ever moves fast enough for us when we need some paperwork done?!! Patience, Patience, Patience we are learning!! And greater reliance on the One who began this work in us!!
We just recently made a new large payment to our agency for the next step in the process. Since we have been actively fund-raising and believing Him to provide, the money that was needed was there! Thanks to so many generous people! Praise God!! Now, we need to believe for additional as we have pretty much depleted our funds for that payment. We will soon, probably in the next week or two, be gathering some more documents that will require some fees. Then we need to file our I-800A as soon as we get our home-study in the next few weeks and that fee alone is nearly $700 or more if we don't meet the Nov something deadline before the fee goes up! Please be praying for God to provide what is needed, when it is needed, and from the source He chooses to use to provide. We don't know how, but we simply trust that HE WILL!!! Thank you guys for standing with us and following us through this incredible journey!