Monday, November 14, 2011

Court Date in... 2 WEEKS!!!!!!!

Yep, you read that right- TODAY was our day to get some news!

We got the news today that a court date has been scheduled for November 28th... only 2 weeks from today!!! Praise the Lord- this is the best news we've received in awhile and the long awaited next step in our adoption process!!!

Ok, so before all the questions start, let me try to explain a little bit of our situation...

When we went back to Ethiopia in April, we went to not only spend time with N and M, but to ask them if they wanted to be a part of our family. That day was one of the best days of our lives, one we will never forget. I wrote about that very special Easter Sunday here.

When we left Ethiopia and had to experience the extremely painful reality of saying goodbye to the children for an unknown amount of time, we knew that there was no way we were going to be able to say goodbye AGAIN. This was the 2nd time we were leaving them and this time it was different than the first- this time we were their FAMILY. We had embraced N and M and squeezed them until the very last second we could and we looked them in the eyes and with tears promised them that we would be back. And that next time there would be no goodbyes. That next time it would be forever. And since that moment almost 7 months ago, they have been waiting and wondering when that next time is.

*Side note: {The way that the adoption process works for Ethiopia is much different than our process was for Korea. One of the big differences is that adoptive families are required to travel to Ethiopia twice in the adoption process. The first trip is for court and it is the trip that almost all families meet their children on. They have received a referral months before and it is on this trip that they are finally able to love in their little one and have a few days to interact with them before returning home. The 2nd trip is about 8 weeks later, after the U.S. embassy has issued a visa for the child and they are officially ready to travel home to be with their adoptive family.}

Ok, so since we are not the "typical" adoptive family we are in a slightly different situation. We have already met our children and spent a significant amount of time with them. We can prove through pictures and visas that we have been to Ethiopia twice already and are fully aware of any conditions that the children we hope to adopt might have. Because of this, we are asking to be exempt from appearing at our court date and hope to return to Ethiopia for the final embassy trip.

Obviously, this is not the norm and there is absolutely no guarantee that we will be granted permission to do this. But with the go-ahead from our agency, we are hopeful that on November 28th- the judge will approve our case AND accept our letter of exemption. The judge has been favorable in the past, but lately she has been much more strict about these cases so we just don't know what will happen.

And here is the real kicker- IF the judge does not accept our letter of exemption, we will have to find a way to BE IN ETHIOPIA for court on December 9th! Yikes! I really really don't want this to be the situation. For the obvious reasons of the pure cost to get there, leaving our kiddos at home, preparing, etc- but the worst part is thinking about going all the way there just to have to say goodbye AGAIN. I feel like the little bit of trust that N and M do have in us will be shattered. Not to mention I don't know if I physically can rip myself away from them for the third time. It is just too painful to think about.

So, instead of thinking about the worst case scenario, let's jump to the best-case scenario! :) I am a planner, so I would love for something like this to work out. Obviously, nothing in this process has worked out like we had planned, so we will just hope and pray and see what God does!

*November 28th- our case goes to court and is APPROVED by the judge and N and M are legally our children!
*6-10 weeks later, we get an embassy date (best case is 6 weeks. Worst case is many many months. but we won't go there)
*Travel back to Ethiopia the 3rd or 4th week of January for embassy appointment and
*Come HOME with two more beautiful children by the end of January!

Eeek! I can't even believe that I am daring to type this. That I'm daring to HOPE that we might be able to bring our children home in 10 weeks.... It is almost too much to hope for after all that we have been through.

Oh dear family and friends who are reading this: 
PLEASE PLEASE PRAY! Pray for favor with the judge on November 28th. (Actually, it will be the evening of the 27th our time) Pray that God would continue to do miracles as He has already done over and over. Pray that every piece of paper that is needed will be there and that we would PASS COURT in 2 weeks!

And most importantly, PRAISE God for all He has done already! It is truly amazing to look back and see that His hand has been in this from the very beginning and there is no way we would be here without Him! 

Thank you to my sweet friend Michelle who shared this scripture with me today that is so fitting.

"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps."  Proverbs 16:9


Jenna said...

How exciting! Praise God!! Praying for favor with the judge and peace for you guys as you wait!

Melissa Danisi said...

Praising God! "Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen." You're journey glorifies Him!

themacclan said...

Wonderful news!! We will be praying!!

Cindy said...

THRILLED!!!! with you!!! JUST YESTERDAY MORNING...andy asked if i had heard an update and I said 'waiting for word any day'...and we prayed! blessed beyond measure to carry you before our Father!!! HE IS GOOD!! and HE is clinging even tighter to you and those precious your home and in Ethiopia! xoxo, cindy ...oh to hug you over our little lattes!!

Jessica Young said...

I'm tearing up over here! I'm so excited for your ethiopian kids to come home!! I'm praying and trusting the Lord with you guys that He will bring them home and provide everything you need in the process: patience, physical & emotional strength, and whatever is needed financially. What a blessing, to have the opportunity to trust the Lord with such a BIG need!

Dizzy said...

Very happy and excited for you! Prayers being sent up from Norway:)

Erin said...

Candice, soooooo exciting that this day appears to be finally coming. Praying for favor!

Rebekah said...

This makes me SMILE!!! I will keep praying very specifically, and will definitely pray that your children will be home with THEIR FAMILY by January.

Noel said...

That is awesome!! YAY!!!!!

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