Monday, February 11, 2008

Ups and Downs

Did I mention that adoption is like a roller coaster ride?

It's not like one of those tame rides that makes your stomach fly as you glide over the hills. It's more like "The Boss" here at our local Six Flags. Personally, I think "The Boss" was designed by flunkie engineers. They messed around a while on Roller Coaster Tycoon, thought this one would make people almost die, and concluded, therefore, that it would be the ultimate thrill ride.

So, I look over "The Boss". It doesn't look that bad. TE is begging me to ride with him. I'm a hero. I like my kids to think I'm cool and I can take it. I generally love roller coasters, and I can usually take what they dish out. So, I jump in, confident that at the end of the ride, I'll be all laughter and smiles.

About 5 seconds into it, I'm thinking, "Oh my word, what did I get myself into?" 10 seconds in, I'm facing certain death - from heart attack. This is not at all what I thought I was signing up for. It's fast and rickety and the turns are too sharp and the hills too steep. All confidence is gone. These flunkie engineers are going to kill me. It's all I can do to shut my eyes and try not to barf. This is not fun!

The ride stops. I made it! RELIEF! I get out, checking my body to make sure it's all there. My neck and back - they're okay. I turn to TE. "Don't EVER ask me to do that again."

So, the last couple of weeks have been especially like "The Boss". We really thought we were near the end of this journey. We had very high expectations. We were floating on cloud nine. Then WHAM! We're going down! And it's lower than low. Unexpected twists and turns have changed everything. All I can do is try not to barf.

And now we're headed up again. Last week the two people who were appointed by the last administration were both denied their lawsuits, and both decided to not pursue any further legal action. HURRAH! Then, both of the new appointees were sworn in and the Central Authority opened for business - it was supposed to be on Wednesday, but I understand it actually opened on Friday. The lawyers lined up outside for hours and hours, into the night. Keep in mind, the deadline for registering old cases is today at the close of business. At some point, someone came out and offered "line tickets" to those who were waiting, so they could come back later in the weekend at an appointed time. Sometime late this weekend, our facilitator was able to apply to register our case! Now what this means is, we have been input into the CA for registration. At some later point, they will output a piece of paper that actually says we are registered. With that piece of paper, we will be able to get back into PGN, so they can approve our case.

But wait! Another twist and down again...

On Thursday, I was talking to our agency director. When I had spoken to her 2 weeks ago, there was some confusion as to our foster mother's name. I was sure it was Carol. She thought the caregiver had a more Hispanic name. So I sent her a picture and she was going to ask our facilitator so we could know for sure. She was getting back to me about the name of Cupcake's caregiver. It went like this.

Agency: "I asked R___ about the picture. That was her first foster mom."

Me: "What do you mean? She's only had one foster mom."

Agency: "Well, that was the only foster mom. But now she's in the group home."

(Stunned silence.)

Me: "She's in a group home?"

Agency: "Yeah... ... I thought you knew? Oh, I'm so sorry. I thought you knew."

So, back in August, when the elections were causing anti-adoption frenzy, our facilitator got very scared of the police raiding foster homes, so he put her in his group home (orphanage) for her safety. But the communication fell through the cracks. We knew this had been a possibility, but we never knew that it had happened.

I'm not devastated or angry or anything. I just feel like it's one more part of her life in Guatemala that I need to process. One more placement that we'll have to deal with when she comes home. One more hurdle for her to get over. She loved her foster family and I hurt for my baby. I'm sure she feels like they rejected her. She's going to have anger and grief that she can't even put into words.

On a positive note, the group home is very small - only 4 children. And Cupcake is being cared for by our facilitator's sister-in-law. She has two little girls to play with and one little boy. It's almost a family setting with that few kids.

But she was thriving so much with her foster family and I know this sets her back some more. I just want to get her home.

Now, the one way that adoption is not like "The Boss" is that God is not a flunkie engineer. He knows what He is doing and I trust Him. Sometimes, I don't think I can survive this ride, but I know I'm strapped in, and I'm not getting off until it's over. I'm sure when this is over, I will say, "Let's not EVER do that again." But I know if Sunshine or Sugar ever wanted to ride "The Boss", I would suck it up and jump on board, because I love them. In the same way, if another child pulls my heart and needs me, I guess I would jump on the adoption ride again, for the love of a child. Some things are just more important than my comfort zone.

Blessings to you,
Mamita J


Laurie said...

Wow You Guys!! We're always and forever cheering you on! This thing called life (especially international adoptions) is quite a ride---but we know the ONE who made the ride---He is not tame but He is always good!!! Hang on tight!
Love, Laurie <><

ManyBlessings said...

PERFECT!!! You said that perfectly!! :)

Mom&Dad to A & J said...

Oh J,
You summed it up perfectly. I'm so glad that our God is so big that he can take us on that ride, seeing every twist and turn before hand, and protect us every step of the way.
Thanks so much for sharing!!

Rachel said...

This happened with Jayden too. They moved him somewhere in the middle of the process, but no one ever told us. We found out by accident on the pickup trip. I think maybe in Guatemala they think that if the child is being cared for then it doesn't matter where they are. I'm kind of glad I didn't know at the time because I probably would have just worried.

Praying your little girl is home soon!