Nonetheless, I know that this blog post is long overdue. A combination of the aforementioned fatigue and equal parts of frustration and disappointment have created an ache inside that makes it tough to find the time and energy to creatively write about it. As the title of this entry suggest, this is an update on our adoption process for all of you who have asked many questions, prayed, and even shared in our frustration.
For some context, I will review our adoption process with our precious daughter Gracie. After several years of attempting to get pregnant and lots of prayer, Amy and I decided to adopt a child. Very shortly after that decision we chose to pursue an International Adoption and focused our efforts on China. I can't tell you exactly what prompted this other than prayer and God's timing. I wish I could tell you that after we prayed fervently we heard a low voice saying "you should adopt a baby from China," or some blatant sign or message. But that isn't how it worked. Furthermore, we also never, never considered our adoption decision as a "Plan B," since our pregnancy efforts weren't succeeding. In fact, we probably could have tried many more tests and methods to get pregnant but we didn't feel that was what God wanted us to do. 5+ years later and this is confirmed every minute of every day. Our love for Gracie Faye Aijin Miller grows exponentially every day.
The logistics of this adoption process that happened nearly 6 years ago will serve as a framework to which to compare our current situation and give you an idea of where things stand today. For example, the international adoption process, more specifically, Gracie's process took about 8-10 months total to complete. My incredible wife was the organizer and driving force throughout the entire process. Basically it was 1. Lots of paperwork, 2. Home Study and more paperwork 3. Immigration paperwork, 4. Submit packet (dossier) AKA Login Date, 5. Referral and then 6. Travel to unite with the child. All of this took 10 months to complete from the first paper to setting foot back in the U.S.A. with our baby girl.
3-4 years ago we decided to adopt a 2nd baby from China. Gracie expressed a desire to be a "big sister," and our hearts were still set on China. Once again my awesome wife organized the paperwork and within a couple months we had our packet ready to go. (Step 4 from the previous paragraph) Then we waited, waited, and waited some more. Word trickled out on the Internet and from our agency, CASI, that the Chinese government was slowing down the referral rate due to the earthquake, and possibly the 2008 Olympics. We pressed on and prayed and waited, and waited, and waited. 2 years later we had expensive home study and immigration paperwork that would expire and we had to pay money (and lots of headaches) to renew everything again. Still no referral.
We are now over 3 years into this process and are learning some very disheartening rumors and theories as to the timeline of Chinese adoptions. Websites like this outline the prognosis and it isn't very encouraging. If we put our login date into the formula our referral estimate is 2015. This is unthinkable for us and very frustrating. In addition to continued prayer, we have modified some of our parameters in efforts to widen the possibilities. I realize this sounds peculiar but it is a very real part of the process.
There are lots of theories and explanations out there for what we are going through. Very few of them offer us much hope or encouragement. In fact, there are times when we feel a bit frustrated and even misled by our agency. In addition our hearts ache immensely for our little girl who talks daily about her "little sister." The hardest part for us to know that God's timing is perfect and that His plan for us is also perfect. We will continue to seek Him and hopefully closer align to His will for us.
We thank all of you for your continued prayers and ask that you continue to pray for this situation.