Update - April 14, 2008
Where in Kaz is My Baby Girl?
I bet you’re wondering why I haven’t received my letter of invitation to travel to Kazakhstan yet. You are not alone. I’ve been wondering the same thing for months.
As you may recall, I was assigned to a specific region, Aktobe, in December. However, due to the holidays, it was unlikely that I would travel. January came and went, and two families, who were assigned to Aktobe at the same time I was, received their invitations to travel. However, since they were adopting boys, it was not a surprise that they received their invitations first. I have been told all along that getting girls can take longer than getting boys.
Another WHFC family and I, who had asked for girls, were told in early February that we would have to wait another four to six weeks because there were no little girls available in Aktobe. At that point I asked if it made sense for me to change regions, but I was told that this is a very complicated process, and it probably wouldn’t move things along any faster. So, again I hunkered down for another wait. At the end of the six weeks, I still had no news.
Then on St. Patrick’s Day, I learned that I was going be assigned to another region because there would be no little girls coming off the registry in Aktobe until at least late May or early June. Needless to say, I was very annoyed to hear this news because I had suggested changing regions weeks before and was met with resistance. However, I was assured that it would be easier to change regions now because there are no girls where I was originally assigned. Perhaps, this change would finally move things in the right direction.
During this period, I learned that my social worker, who was truly a cheerleader for me, had left the agency. I have since been assigned to another social worker, who has been with the agency for many years and who is lovely, but it was still a blow to have one of my advocates disappear. This week I learned that my coordinator in Waltham, who has been my main point of contact, was also leaving. Although I’m happy for her, I am terribly unhappy for me. I’m sure that there are other members of the team, who will be there to see me through this process, but I can’t help but feel disappointed and upset. My anchors have been set adrift.
I am told repeatedly that my agency is working very hard to match me with a new region, so that I can travel soon. I have to believe this to be true because any other scenario is just too difficult to accept.
So, I must be patient a bit longer, but it’s very hard. For months I have put my life on hold, not knowing if the call will come today or tomorrow.
I truly believe my little girl is in Kazakhstan just waiting for my loving arms to embrace her. This belief, and my faith that the Lord will bring me safely to my very special daughter, keep me going each day.
Update - April 27, 2008
Westward Ho! Going to Uralsk
At long last, I have some good news to share! This week I learned that I will be heading to Uralsk (also called Oral) in Northwest Kazakhstan and very close to the Russian border. Although I still don’t know exactly when I will be traveling, it will likely be this summer.
As I’ve mentioned, I have been in limbo since I learned that there are no baby girls that fit my dossier description in Aktobe. So, being assigned to Uralsk is a very significant and positive step forward.
Another positive thing is that I will now be taking one trip instead of two, as originally planned. Uralsk is the only region in Kazakhstan that waives the 15-day appeals period.
I will still have the 14-day bonding period and have to wait for court and the filing of the required paperwork, but this should not take longer than five to six weeks (assuming there are no major delays, of course).
I have also learned that another family at WHFC, with whom I have been corresponding, has also been reassigned to Uralsk. Although there is no way of knowing if we will be heading to Kaz at the same time, I certainly hope this will happen. It would be wonderful to share our adoption experiences together.
Aside from being thrilled that I now know where I’m headed, I’m excited that I will be going to the same city my friend, Carolyn, traveled to in the fall to adopt her adorable son, Henry. Although I’m not sure if I will be going to the same baby house where Henry lived, it’s certainly a possibility. There are only two baby houses in Uralsk, and they are not far from each other.
I have already riddled Carolyn with questions about her stay in Uralsk, and she has been kind enough to share many of her recollections with me. It is comforting to gather first-hand information from a friend, and it is reassuring to know that an adoption in Uralsk can go smoothly. Henry is proof positive that dreams really can come true.
As I already mentioned, I’m still not sure when my letter of invitation will arrive, but my reassignment to Uralsk has reinvigorated my spirits. Even though I still have to wait some more, I am trying to focus on the positives. For example, because of my delay, I was home today to celebrate my oldest nephew’s confirmation in the same church where I made my own confirmation when I was in eighth grade. My whole family attended the mass, and I was so proud of Daniel, and so happy to share in this very significant and important day in his life. As I sat with my family in church and at the celebration afterwards, I was reminded once again of how very blessed I am. What an amazing family I have! I also was thinking about how lovingly my own daughter will be welcomed into our family and how much she will add to all of our lives.
And so, I continue to look to the future with hope. I have taken one step closer to my little girl this week, and for this I give thanks.