There’s not one way to describe our household right now – but there are about 17 billion words that all seem to apply!
The beginning of the new school year came along and sucked the air right out of our lungs before we could even say “Hello”. All of a sudden we were rushing into a new era of unknowns: a huge building (with two floors), multiple “periods”, gym uniforms, walking to school, textbooks and homework on ipads, and six teachers to keep tabs on instead of one. The short phrase for this era: THE MIDDLE SCHOOL YEARS. I don’t really know what I expected, but this certainly wasn’t it. Amid the “hi, mom!” “bye, mom!” in-and-out the sheer weight of the fact that I am actually OLD enough to have birthed a middle school kid is beginning to simmer in my belly.
Apparently, the good “WHOOMP” at the back of the head with middle school wasn’t enough stress for us, and we also started a new year with the other two girls, (thankfully both with teachers that Braeden already had – so they are very familiar!) and I began my whirlwind of volunteering with the elementary school’s PTA. Add onto that our first season of Fall Ball (Braeden exchanged the local flag football league for Fall Baseball this season to try it out…), Abby is playing rec-league outdoor soccer and doubling up with the world of dance. Both girls (Logan & Abby) auditioned (and made the cut!) for the performance groups at their studio, so with multiple hours of required classes throughout the week, I’m seriously considering chucking the Washington State Law and giving them driving lessons so they can take themselves. A 4′ 8-year old should only need about 4 phone books to see over the steering wheel, right? Who am I kidding? The one thing keeping me from doing that is I don’t have 4 phone books. (Don’t even have one!) 🙂
So far the kids have been in school 16 days (minus weekends) and this is the first free time I’ve had to do anything other than PTA work (memberships, volunteer coordinating, meetings, student-folder system) and chauffeuring. Can I fundraise to hire a family cook? I’m pretty sure we haven’t had “real” dinner in about 13 days. (Helpful note to other moms/dads: when looking for easy meals from Costco for the crazy nights – do not get the Organic broccoli-stuffed chicken breast. First of all, the shelf is labeled $8.99 and in teeny letters somewhere must say (per pound) because after I cooked it the bottom label read “$20.87” – and it was NOT good. Kids thought it was disgusting and even I had to force it back down when it threatened to climb back out. On another positive note, Costco’s Hawaiian chicken easy meal is delicious, and when it’s in stock I buy multiples.)
Kris and I manage to catch moments together between the kids’ pass-off (it really is like a football game at times around here!) and connect at the end of the day (most of the time) when all monkeys are jumping on the bed only in their dreams…We are currently looking for a house to buy within our school boundary (keeping kids at same school) but so far nothing has worked out. We lease our home and are ready for something permanent – especially with a new addition coming soon! We are trying to avoid huge changes in housing/environment after he arrives.
On the subject of the new arrival…
Another stress/excitement/knot of anticipation/anxiety/(the list goes on and on) is that all of a sudden in the last 4 weeks referrals have begun to be issued again! Last time I wrote, I believe the first two of the year had been received, and now, it’s so difficult to keep track because it’s spaced out among many agencies, but as far as we can count, the tally is at 9-10 referrals received! (most likely even more that haven’t been posted or announced yet!) While none of these is ours, the IBESR has stacks of Dossiers that they have released into the Children’s Court for parent & judge/mayor signatures, and several more referrals are expected to be issued in the next few weeks to come!
We are very very very hopeful, (this movement has renewed the sense of urgency and hope in many waiting families!), and prayerful that we will receive our referral soon! (“Soon” as in within a month!) In the past, we have gotten the “any day” message, but no referrals had been issued. Now, a steady stream is exiting and the “soon” message has a lot more weight to it!
We would covet your prayers for our Little Man that he would stay safe during this time and that his/our file would be able to get the necessary signatures immediately! As soon as those signatures are received our referral will be eligible to be released to us! This is all very exciting news for our family – our kids have been the ones to never lose hope throughout this whole process – it is pretty amazing, actually! – and they are SO excited about the movement and the tangible hope of a soon-to-come referral that Abby saw me at lunch the other day and said “Mom! My knees and body have been bouncing all day! I can’t figure out why I’m so Wiggly today!” and I said “ummm…do you need to go potty?” (reasonable conclusion). “No mom!” 🙂 then quickly exclaimed “OH! I know why I’m so so so excited! It’s because of the referral that’s coming soon! I just can’t wait!” 🙂 love my kids hearts through all of this! Praying that when he does finally come that all their little hearts bond like crazy-glue!
While we don’t expect an easy transition in the least – we are praying that God’s grace and comfort will extend to us all, including Little Man, and that he will acclimate to our family and life here quickly – as well as that WE will acclimate and become a part of HIS heart quickly. I think that’s a huge piece of my desire as an adoptive mom – that I wouldn’t expect him to simply adapt to MY/OUR world, but that we would be invited into HIS world – that we wouldn’t be blinded to the perspective of life that lies behind his eyes – that we would constantly be entering and abiding in his world while still teaching him about ours 🙂 Eventually, praying that our two worlds would collide and form a beautiful new existence for our family!
Our current funding: We are still looking at probably needing to cover $15,000 – 20,000 in additional costs beyond airfare, referral fees and travel fees (those three are due upon acceptance of referral & immediate scheduling of 2-week bonding trip. We currently have about $17,000 in our designated Adoption fund to cover these.) We are prepared to cover the extra additional costs as needed but are determined to do this without going into debt. If you would like to contribute and join us financially, you can do so via the donation links on our website through America World Adoption (our Agency). Your donations go straight to them, and they hold the funds in our name and apply them to our fees. At the end of our process, if there are any remaining fees in the America World McGreevey fund, they will be donated to another adoptive family.
Concentrated prayers surrounding our referral for the next 3-4 weeks would be cherished. We can’t wait to see his face and learn all we can about him, not to mention the fact that as soon as we accept our referral we get to travel almost immediately (usually 2-4 weeks out) and go spend 15 days bonding with him!
We are VERY excited right now and are praying that referrals would continue to pour out of the IBESR even if they are for other families – even if God asks us to wait longer! The steady exits are SO encouraging to everyone and our agencies are all working tirelessly to advocate for us all!
Thank you for joining us on our journey! We are honored to have you as a part of our lives!