Monday, August 26, 2013

Our Adoption Journey: "Our Paperwork Pregnancy & Hoping for a Future Birth Overseas"

Ok, here I am, finally able to sit down for a little while to give you an update on what’s going on with our adoption.  For those of you that have recently joined our supporting group and haven't read our previous updates, here they are: Update # 1, and  #2.

What a ride friends!Even though we are thrilled at the prospect of enlarging our family; handling the day to day of family life, our little ones, our fundraiser and the adoption process all at the same time keeps us quite busy. But we trust that if God called us to it, He’ll see us through it. This is certainly an experience that is making us grow in stewardship of our resources. Especially time!

As always we'll entertain you with our pictures as you read thru! This is from a got together with my family that came to visit from Colombia a few weeks ago. Wouldn't our future child look super-cute on these pictures?
Ok, as many of you know, we decided to pursue an international adoption from the country of China. We are specifically attempting to bring home a special need child from the province of Henan, located in Central Asia. We are slowly moving forward through the milestones of the journey, which at a high level consist of:

1.     Applying and Obtaining the Agency Approval

2.     Compiling the Dossier (Documentation to get approved by the Chinese & the U.S Gov't)

3.     Being matched with our child

4.     Traveling to China to bring our child home

5.     Bonding and post-placement

Yeah, I bet he/she would love to enjoy a family pool party!

Every step is quite involved, and we are experiencing the morning sickness of a “paperwork pregnancy” as we diligently work on the paper-chasing of step #2.  So far we are very pleased with the service and professionalism we have experienced by the agency we chose: CCIA (Chinese  Children Adoption International).
We will try to expand on the process of how we selected them in a future post, where we will also share a little more on the cost and financials of adoption. For now, we want to share a bit about the different types of adoption and why we decided to adopt internationally.

And throw water balloons at daddy!

And bake a birthday pizza with brother!

And steal daddy's chef hat!

For families interested in adopting in the United States, there are three types of adoption: Adoption of a new born, adoption of waiting children through the foster care system, and international adoption. Even though the online resources to learn about adoption are plentiful we highly recommend 2 books that helped us tremendously to get a better understanding on the subject.  The first one: Succesful Adoption, a guide for Christian Families is a great resource to get answers to most of the questions regarding the adoption process. From adoption types, costs, the process, samples documents, to the post-adoption considerations, this book was really worth to read before jumping into our journey. 

The second book that was greatly helpful and inspiring was: Adopted for Life by Russell Moore. This book was very insightful regarding the “why” of adoption. We highly recommend it to learn about the meaning of adoption for a Christian believer and what are the many different ways the bible points us to respond to the fate of the orphans and the less privileged.  Not every family is called to become an adoptive family, but we are all called to get involved. We believe that each family responding to the calling to adopt is led to approach a special type of adoption according to what they consider is a best fit for them.
And jump his wiggles out!

In our case we arrived to our decision as a combination of many factors. We’ll name a few:

We’ve had a lifelong interest and involvement with global missions which has increased our responsiveness towards needs in other parts of the world. We believe that adopting internationally is a great way to live out a missional lifestyle, which is something we want to be purposeful about.  Also, we have close friends that have adopted special need children, and we’ve witnessed how much more manageable this is than what we initially thought. We have been blessed by seeing these families blossom and reap the rewards of investing themselves into these children. Educating ourselves on the subject has helped to evaporate a bunch of myths on the subject plus we consider ourselves tremendously blessed by living in a country with much more medical resources to help a special need child.

And get to know many places with all of us!

Why China right? Well, probably the response to this question deserves a post on its own.  But to keep it short for now, we will share that even though in the last few decades China has experienced an exponential growth in many areas the need on vast areas which haven’t seen this progress remains mind-boggling.  This is especially truth in rural areas of central and west China. We also learned that the worldwide adoption landscape changes continuously.  Countries open, close and alter their adoption policies, making adoptions more or less difficult and costly. So, as we screened the different possibilities, reliability and affordability were way high on our choosing criteria, which led us to consider an adoption from Asia.

And bury herself in sand with brother!

China has been very consistent on their adoption policies which have paved the path for many families to complete successful adoptions during this season. Therefore we feel led to enter this window of opportunity to make our dream adoption come true. And we haven’t even mentioned our interest in Asian culture! We hope that somehow this experience boosts our endeavors to help our children learn Mandarin. =)
And participate in family feasts!

Ok, this is enough information for now. Again we appreciate so much all the support we have received from all of you! From your encouraging words, questions, prayers, to your interest on our Bubbles for Hope fundraiser. Please keep them coming! We are really humble to belong to this wonderful community and group of friends!
Yes dear sister, we are waiting for you to come home!

Yes dear brother, we even have many birthday gifts for you too!

For those of you prayer warriors, we covet your prayers! So here are our specific prayer requests at this point:

*For positive and timely outcomes on all the documents and processes that we have initiated/requested from governmental offices.  And for us to remain on task and encouraged through this tedious process.
*For God’s favor and leading of the multitude of people that has an input on our adoption journey.

*For God’s protection, provision over our child in the orphanage. And for all the orphans that are waiting for a matching family there too.

*For God’s guidance and provision as we continue working on our fundraiser and look into financial aid programs.

Xie, Xie! =)


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