I began a post Thursday morning to tell you that Erik was meeting with someone from our congressman's office at the urging of our specialist to try to help speed up the processing of our adoption case. I didn't finish that post. Later that afternoon we received a letter from USCIS, which is the governmental agency that processes international adoptions. It said our update was incomplete. The one we sent three weeks ago after the Social Work Scramble. Erik quickly made an appointment online and drove to the USCIS field office in San Antonio Friday morning. He met with with the officer that has been handling our case. It doesn't change the time we've lost, but we did put a human face to our names. A desperate father wanting help to bring his son home is hard to forget.
If you only recently began reading this blog, you might not even know we were adopting a son for as little as I've been able to write about Yonas lately. You might not know how my heart aches for him. How much I miss him. How I can't stare at his picture anymore. How I no longer look at the clock in the living room that reads Ethiopian time multiple times a day and wonder what he's doing. You wouldn't know I can't go into his room without my stomach hurting.
Sitting 9 months post referral with no travel date in sight, it begins to feel like a fantasy. Or maybe not a fantasy, but something so far away, so nebulous, that I begin to lose my sense of it. I begin to feel as though I've made the whole thing up.
Sometime over the summer, I made peace with this process. I was full of genuine grace and patience. I could see and believe and trust. Last Thursday night it all fell away. It broke me. I'm a "where's the lesson here?" kind of gal. Because if I'm struggling, then I'll be damned if I'm not going to try to see the bigger picture, find the lesson. So I've been searching. And I can't find anything. But I have an annoying, gnawing suspicion that it's the searching that's enough. I don't want it to be. I want to shut down, to fill up on tequila and dark chocolate and movies. And I have done that a little bit. But what I see through the lens of my busted heart right now is a hint of that idea that all of it; the waiting, the uncertainty, the love and sympathetic tears of friends and family, our pain, the occasional shutting down for self-preservation, the moments of grace; it's all just how it's supposed to be.
And it kills me. And it doesn't feel bearable. But it is, just because it has to be.
First Things First
2 days ago