my marriage is stronger than ever
my friendships are more connected and deeper
my compassion has grown exponentially
my children are nicer to each other
our journey is opening the eyes of others to the orphans' plight
our finances have never been so good (yes it is true!!!)
i've experienced more blessings in this year than i have since 2000(that year i got married, had a baby, and bought our first home)
my relationship with God is closer and more central in my life
it also changed some other things in a not so positive way...
some of our family has been less than supportive and we have chosen to distance ourselves because of it
we have been the recipients of rude and ignorant comments
some of my friends have gotten tired of watching and hearing about our year long process and pulled away
i have had nightmares, fears, worry, anxiety even in the face of my Trust in God's Plan
i have learned to hate the dreaded walk to the mailbox(waiting for paperwork is agonizing)
i have been sad often thinking about the problem of over 150 million orphans worldwide and wonder that we don't do more.
most of all...
i have not fully enjoyed any of the recent holidays. they have been painful as i am separated from my children. i think about them being without a family for yet another holiday. i think of our(collective humanity) selfishness and excess in our celebrations while others have nothing.
i tried so hard to embrace Advent. mary prepared for Jesus as i prepare for my children to come. what really happened was paperwork got in the way of the normal Christmas preparations and i gave up. the house did not get decorated, my family did not get their packages until after Epiphany, i was stressed and sick. it was not the best time.
and gasp! i was glad it was over. well... not completely over as i have been too busy to take down the tree. i have become one of those that should just leave the tree up until next year-those i have picked on in the past. OKOKOK i understand now. sometimes we can only do what we can do.
i feel badly that i focused on my life more than on Christmas this year. i almost resented having to do the typical hustle and bustle. i wanted to shout at the universe, "slow down! stop! don't you see i haven't time for this? i am TRYING to adopt here!"
but now i am resenting Chinese New Year too. this is the email i got today...
As of January 10, 2012, your DS230 WAS DELIVERED to the Consulate. Because of Chinese New Year, it will be delayed, which means it won't be ready for pickup until after Chinese New Year. The US Consulate in Guangzhou is closed from January 23 through January 27. Because of this, your Article 5 will be delayed a week, at least. I have no idea when it will be ready for pickup, and once everyone comes back from Chinese New Year, I will update you. Please note that during the week of Chinese New Year, I will NOT receive updates on the status of DS230s or Article 5.
seriously? OK, so i had already been warned that CYN was going to set us back. but seeing it formally in writing? not only a bummer, but i am mad at a holiday. silly, but still there it is.
i know how important CNY is, but doesn't it know how important it is to their precious daughters to get them to their family as soon as possible? again i scream to the universe, "STOP! you all can continue to party and celebrate AFTER my children are safe in my arms!"
i know the universe will not listen. i am barking at the moon. i feel better getting it out though.
i promise that next year i will embrace holidays. i will have my girls where i can see them, love on them, be family for them. we will celebrate and party like everyone else.
but WAIT, just because my children are safely home, what about all the other families waiting? orphans waiting?
ok, i promise that while we are celebrating and praising God for His provision, we will remember those left behind. we will do everything we can to help make it "one less."
oh who am i kidding? i will most likely be adopting again this time next year. perhaps i am destined to bark at the universe until orphan is no longer a word to describe anyone.
GREAT AND POWERFUL GOD. THANK YOU FOR OPENING MY EYES. PLEASE I BOLDLY ASK YOU TO MOVE YOUR CHILDREN TO MAKE THE PROBLEM OF ORPHANS A SOLVED PROBLEM. THAT NO ONE CAN CLAIM TO BE WITHOUT A FAMILY. THAT WE ALL ARE LOVED, PROVIDED FOR, AND SAFE. I KNOW NOT HOW THIS COULD BE DONE, BUT KNOW YOU CAN DO ALL THINGS. FORGIVE ME FOR MY NEGATIVE FEELINGS TOWARDS THE HOLIDAYS THAT HAVE SLOWED DOWN MY ADOPTION PROCESS. HELP ME TO REJOICE IN YOUR PERFECT TIMING.
i went back to my older posts and found a post about how we would most likely travel during Lent. at one point, it seemed possible to travel during january. so, i go back to my original belief we will travel during Lent. it is february 22-april 5. that is now approximately the window i am being given. why did i ever doubt my original belief? why did i allow myself to think it would be sooner? why would i want it sooner when Lent is perfect.
Lent is a time of reflection and spiritual renewal. the Bible does not call on us to celebrate this season. i mark it in my life by uniting my life to Jesus's preparation to fulfill the prophecy. He wandered the desert in preparation for 40 days, then was baptized, started His ministry, then approximately 1-3 years later He was crucified.
during Lent i remember His walk. He denied satan. i try to deny sin. He was away from everything he knew. we will be away from what we know. He prayed constantly. we will pray constantly. it was hard. it was supposed to be. i embrace that blending my family will be hard.
i will rejoice in Lent this year. i will not be angry. for Lent brings new life...a Resurrected life. this Lent promises new life for our family.
so changes will happen. they already have. some for the better and some not. the common theme with both? God is with us through them all. He never changes. His love for us never changes.
all is well, in spite of all my barking.
THANK YOU GOD