Woohoo!!! The phone call that I have been waiting for for over a year has finally come! We've known for about a month that we'd be moving forward for sure to adopt Dora, but we've been waiting for this meeting to take place where we'll get to finally sign papers and see her file. I'm excited to sign the papers, but I'm REALLY excited about seeing that file. We'll only get to see it one day. In the office. That's it. (Although I've heard that it's possible to come back and see it again before we finalize if we don't get through it all) And this file holds all the information about her life prior to joining our family at 20 months. It has why she was removed each time she was removed. It has bio mom's story. I'm really hoping that through this file we'll come to understand our daughter better than we do now. It's so easy to forget that she has a past before us. We never knew her as a baby. We don't know what was done to her as a baby. There have been so many unknowns that it will just be so great to hopefully get a better understanding of her life! So, that meeting is on June 22nd!!!
After that meeting the social worker will come out to our house the following Tuesday for our post placement visit and then there's some more paperwork and she has to file it down at the court. And then we'll schedule our court date for something like two weeks out from there. So we'll probably be finalizing the end of July sometime! The girls and I are joining my parents on a trip back East for my cousin's wedding and so we really need it to be finalized by then. It's a mess trying to get approval to go out of state (even just to Nevada!!!) and neither one of us really wants to deal with it so she has a deadline that I know she'll keep.
As we get closer to finalization I'm getting the question of what's next for the Harts more frequently. Oh, if only I knew! Our hands are tied for so many reasons right now that we just can't move forward at this point for number three. Don't get me wrong. I'm itching for number three and if number three was dropped in our laps I would be so excited! But we've had this goal of Bryan getting a full time job so that I can stay home full time for over two years now and we're getting so close to that goal! I don't know what's going to happen in the future. All I know is that we've been stuck here finishing up Dora's adoption and we haven't been able to go where a job could take us. Once Dora's adoption is final and Bryan's done his year as Team Leader we'll finally be free of everything holding us down and we can truly try to meet that goal. It could mean staying put. It could mean being relocated. We just don't know at this point. Our family is here. We have a great church family and we'd be happy to stay, but we'd also welcome the adventure of moving somewhere new too. God has time to direct our hearts and show us the next step, but I do know for sure that as difficult as it may be for me we won't be pursuing adopting a third until we have this figured out. If a child was to be dropped in our laps... that would be a different story all together...
What route do we think we'll go for number three? All I can say is that neither time we've adopted has it been the way that we thought it would happen. With Cinderella we were pursuing foster care. With Dora there was NO WAY we were going to pursue foster care after having such an amazing experience with Cinderella AND we were already well on our way to getting started in the process of adopting from Ethiopia! Both girls came to us when we were least expecting it. So, I don't know! I have a strong desire to have another infant straight from the hospital, but my heart aches for the orphans of Africa. So I'm conflicted right now. But, I figure we still have time for God to direct my heart and show me the direction of my next child. He has been faithful to move my heart to His will each time so far and I know He will be faithful to continue to do that! AND all other things aside there is a huge financial barrier that will have to be addressed at some point. We're hoping to be able to chip away at it this coming year, but we need another part time job to be able to do that. So God is going to have to provide in that area as well. BUT, it struck me one day that it's God's desire for His people to take care of the orphans and the widows. It's all over Scripture! So, when one steps out in faith to do what He has asked us to do He will be faithful to provide the money to do so. I have watched over and over again how God makes money come from no where and where MAJOR financial hurdles were met in a matter of days. God is so much bigger than our bank accounts and it's so important for me to not underestimate Him in this area of my life! It scares me to no end to think that I know we have several more children ahead and having no idea where each down payment on a house is going to come from - because each adoption is at least that. With the exception of fost adopt which in turn pays you. Not a lot, but enough to help with the impending costs of raising any child with special needs.
So, there's a lot of question marks in our future but I have a feeling that God's just not done with me yet! He's showing me more and more who I really am and that I don't have everything as together as I think I do. He's reforming my parenting once again as I struggle to balance my philosophy on parenting with a philosophy of parenting that is uncomfortable for me, but effective for Dora. And He's causing me to grow in patience and compassion. All good stuff here folks. Tough, but good and I'm excited to see where God takes us in this journey of faith that we're living!!!