Thursday, March 22, 2012

Now we wait!

     For the past year we have been jumping through every hoop imaginable in order to complete all the paperwork and training required for our dossier. Short of a full cavity search, I think we have had every test imaginable. Not including the training and home study, we have had to complete or compile multiple sets of fingerprints, FBI background checks, birth certificates, wedding certificate, photos of our home, reference letters, physicals, HIV tests, TB tests, and psychological evaluations.

     All of this paperwork (called the dossier) then had to be notarized and then apostilled by the Secretary of State before being sent to our adoption agency. After making the required four copies of every document, we wound up with about a three to four inch stack of paperwork. I remember being very nervous when sending it all to our agency knowing how much time and money went into collecting all of the documents. When I dropped it all off at FedEx to be overnight'd, I nervously laughed as the employee asked what the "commercial value" was. Although the "out of pocket" costs for the documents and tests that went into the dossier are well into the thousands, how do you put a value on the time and energy put into creating them. I sarcastically replied "a year of my life".

    Looking back, I think we could have completed the paperwork a little faster but at the cost of some of our sanity. It gets very frustrating and I recall several times when we just wanted to take a break from it for a week or two. I am a procrastinator and Kristi likes to get things done and over with so you can imagine some of the issues this caused during the process but we made it. I received an email from our agency on February 21st that our dossier had been sent to Colombia!

     So now we wait! Our agency estimates the waiting time for a referral from Ayudamé to be between 6 and 24 months from the time the dossier arrives in Colombia. Unfortunately it doesn't get any more specific or accurate than that. This will give us time to continue to learn Spanish and save money for the remainder of the expenses (half the agency fee and airfare / accommodations in Bogotá). Our agency also advised us to take this time to continue the study of adoption related parenting and gather the support of our support system. They suggest we ask them to help us with the wait as best they can—coaching them to not ask “when” questions. Although I can see where the constant asking by friends and family of  "when" may eventually get annoying or frustrating to some people, so far it does not bother me. I enjoy talking about the adoption any chance I get and it lets me know that people are thinking about us. I would much prefer someone ask me when I think we will be getting a referral (even if that is a reminder of how long we have to go) than for them not to ask about the adoption at all. So with the possible exception of having to update our background checks, we should be done with the paperwork process. Our next big projects are getting the room ready for our child and researching accomodations and things to do while in Bogotá.



Jen said...

You must feel a sense of relief to get to this point in the process...the weight, but not the wait ;-), is off your shoulders now. Congrats...we love you guys. Jen.

Alexis said...

Wow, what an accomplishment you two have made. You have such strong commitment to the Lord, each other and this process. I love you and will pray that this wait is short, especially for the child who will get to come home with you and the boys.


Tom and Kay said...

Your mom and I are so proud of you and Kristi. I can't express how blessed we are by having such a wonderful Christian family for us. We are so excited as you are to welcome into our lives another granddaughter. Your quote of James 1:27 shows how much you love and serve our awesome God. Also, James 1:3-4 speaks volumes of you and your family. I have issues with your being a "procrastinator". You have always been a "cross the T's and dot the I's man. We are waiting to hug the little girl. Let us know if we can do ANYTHING. We love all of you.

The Lockharts said...

Thank you all for the kind words and support!

Brittany said...

Hey I just stumbled upon your blog. We too are waiting for a referal from AYUDAME! Excited to follow along with you!

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About US

The Lockharts

We have been blessed with such a wonderful family. We have two boys that are perfect in every way. This blog will serve to chronicle our journey as we go through the process of growing our family through international adoption.

James 1:27

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.