Friday, April 25, 2008

Sweet and Sour

I am so grateful for those rare moments of peace--little gifts of heaven that are gifts before you know their importance.  I haven't felt well the past couple of days--a nasty little respiratory bug that got worse today.  Despite that, I went to work, but decided to come home early. 

As I pulled in my driveway and opened my car door I was hit with the overwhelming sense of spring.  The scent of all my blooming trees hit me as soon as I opened my car door.  And there, as I walked up my short walkway to the house, was the Japanese Maple I planted nearly a year ago.  A visible reminder of my son.  I planted it last year as the thought of him took weight in my soul and settled against my heart.  The poor tree struggled all last year--it's horrible clay, not soil and then the drought hit.  Despite my watering attempts the poor thing shriveled and lost leaves early.  Throughout the winter it looked like a stick.  As Haven became more real to me as I pursued adoption late in the year the tree looked more and more destroyed.  Today, moments before I checked my e-mail (and changed my day) this is what I saw:IMG_0275IMG_0274 My precious tree not only recovered, but it is lush and full with more leaves than the day I bought it.  I remember the salesman telling me that it would never get very big--maybe 5-6 feet tall and it would take about 20 years to get there.  I remember thinking that my son would be graduating high school and starting college the year my tree was fully grown. 

Today my agency group sent me these links:

http://vietnam.usembassy.gov/adoption_warning0408.html

http://vietnam.usembassy.gov/irreg_adoptions042508.html

The first outlines the steps that the US Embassy in Vietnam has taken in regards to Vietnam adoptions and the expiring MOU.  We now know that all dossiers need logged into the DIA in Vietnam by July 1, 2008 and only those with official referrals will be allowed to complete adoptions by September 1, 2008.  After September 1st, all dossiers will be returned to the originating adoption agency.  For many people, including me, this is heartbreaking news.  The USCIS has been alleging abuses of the system by the VN and various adoption agencies the last 6 months, but in the second link they finally outlined in black and white what offenses were occurring.  It's heartbreaking.  It's heartbreaking for the birth families that are trapped in a cycle of poverty that are being exploited by unethical agencies and government officials.  It's heartbreaking for the children that have been trapped in the middle and it is heartbreaking for PAPs that were hoping to create a family and provide a family for a child (seemingly) in need of family.  There are no winners in this ugly situation.

I honestly don't know where this leaves me.  My agency is expecting a status report next week that might include how many referrals they are expecting in the next month.  If only 1 or 2 are referred I doubt that Haven will be coming home from Vietnam. 

I kick myself sometimes when I think too hard about this.  I felt called to a son in Vietnam shortly after I felt that calling to my daughter in China.  I keep wondering what what have happened if I had followed my gut instead of following the rules?  If I had started just a few months earlier this wouldn't be an issue for me.  If my 171H hadn't taken over 4 months to arrives this wouldn't be an issue.  But as my friend Terri pointed out (thanks Terri!), the same could be said of my China journey.  I never should have gotten in under the line as I did.  But I did.  God was perfect in each step, in each detail down to the hour and day.  Perhaps the same could be said of my journey to Haven.  I'm thankful for the reminder on my blog that "God will not be late by a single day". 

I knew this adoption would be the most stressful, the one that really required a lot of faith.  I plan on continuing until the end.  Until they tell me it is time to turn back, I will wait for my son.  I ask for your prayers tonight for the birth families, the children and for the many PAPs today that learned that they will NOT be parents to children in Vietnam.  It's a sad day for all of us.

IMG_0276

4 comments:

Kate April 25, 2008 at 8:39 PM  

Just when I think I'm done crying, I cry some more. I can't seem to write a post right now. Your words are beautiful, continue to stay strong.

Kelli April 25, 2008 at 8:42 PM  

This has been an emotionally exhausting day. I am right there with you, every step of the way.

Terri April 26, 2008 at 12:08 AM  

Erica,
Be strong and continue to BELIEVE! We are all with you on this journey. Call if you need to chat or vent!
Terri

Meredith April 26, 2008 at 1:00 AM  

I'm so sorry you're facing such uncertainty. While I don't like the decision we have had to make, I do take some comfort in finally knowing something. Please know you'll be in my thoughts and prayers over the next few weeks and months as all this gets sorted out. Hang in there!

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About This Blog

This started as my story, but has evolved to OUR story. This is the story of life as a single parent to a wonderful little boy while we wait for baby sister. China LID 2.12.07.


But these things I plan won't happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled. If it seems slow, be patient! For it will surely take place. It will not be late by a single day.
Habakkuk 2:3

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