When I caught wind of the news on Thursday that all Congo adoptions were likely going to be delayed 3-6 months, my heart ached for those in the process. I thought of all you moms that I’ve watched as you wait for your child to be home. For some of you the road has been long and winding and full of bumps. I know that many of you are completely and utterly devastated. Maybe you thought you’d be traveling in the next month or so and now you are in a tailspin learning that that probably won’t happen. I am sorry. I’m so very sorry. I’m sure that all of you had at least created some type of landmark in the months to come that you determined your child would be home for. Maybe it was Easter, a birthday, family reunion, or even Christmas. We had a timeline too. In our video we wrote that our little guy would be home in the summer. That’s not going to happen.
I’m not going to go on here about whether or not I agree or disagree with the change. I am not even going to try to explain why it is happening. That’s not my position to do. In fact, when I heard the news I chose to sit back and be silent.
I didn’t have words.
I didn’t have heartbreak.
You see, I learned so much the last time around. I now know what it is like to be on the other side of the “wait.” Those days and months when I let my heart be shattered in the thought of my daughter sitting on the other side of the world are over. She came home and with her came a lot of pain. I learned that while I thought I loved her for months and months, I didn’t really. She was in my arms and I didn’t love her. As I’ve written about several times, that was hard on me. The guilt overwhelmed me and for a time I suffered from depression. I have not forgotten that dark time. It wasn’t that long ago.
I am determined to do everything in my power to not go down the slippery road again. While I spent the first few days after “meeting” our little guy for the first time imagining how wonderful life will be as a family of 4, I knew that I needed to take control of my emotions. I needed to shut them off. I needed to remember that I do not love that boy. He is a stranger. He probably smells funny, and I know nothing about him. He will come home, and THEN we can work on that whole falling in love thing.
That isn’t to say that we didn’t pour over all the pictures, videos, measurements, and notes about him. We did. I would sit and stare at him and daydream. I found myself talking about him more and more. I knew that I needed to make a conscious effort to not let myself get too attached. Not only did I not want to create a false love for him, but I am also much more keenly aware of the possibility of him not coming home. It is a reality in DRC adoptions. It is a reality that didn’t cross my mind when we were waiting for Odette. We saw her picture and practically wanted to rip through the earth to have her in our arms. This time I am guarding my heart.
He is not my son yet. He is God’s son. God may bring our little guy home or He may not.
I trust Him.
Maybe it is easy for me to say that I am better at waiting this time around because we are so early on. Maybe in a month or two I will be out there pleading for the next piece of paperwork or step to be crossed off. Right now, I’m not. We’ve got nothing on Little A so far, and while I do think a bit about when we might hear news, I am not stressing about it. If I count down the months, days, or even hours it doesn’t make them go faster. If I try to micromanage the process and compare family A, B, and C to me it doesn’t help anything.
It seems that we won’t be traveling in May or June like we thought just a week ago. It stinks when I think that we probably won’t have the entire summer to bond like we did with Odette. It stinks thinking about taking time off of work and losing pay, but I would take forever off if it is what he needed. It STINKS thinking of Little A in an orphanage even longer. I could dwell on so much, but instead I am choosing joy. We will have more time to save money. Odette will have more time to bond with us before her world is turned upside down. We may even get to sneak in a little family vacay as three of us.
We pray together each night that Little A will join our family. We pray for his health and for his safety. We pray he may feel God’s love. Soon enough he will feel ours.
Please mommas know that I am sorry for you and I am sorry for your little ones. If you are really struggling with the news, I understand. If this had happened while we were waiting for Odette you would have found me in a pile in the closet drowning in my tears. I understand. I really do.