For all of you who have been patiently checking for the past two weeks, and found no update, I thank you for hanging with us and checking back. It has actually been a difficult stretch for us. As much as we have tried to be patient and continue to be faithful and trust God's timing in all this, it has been difficult to see family after family get the news they've been waiting for and begin to make travel plans. Don't get me wrong, deep down we are so excited for them. We know first hand the process and when you finally get to that stage, it makes it all worth it. But as we've waited, we felt like we were being passed by family after family wondering "what about us". You begin to doubt. You think the worst. And jealousy can creep in quickly and even anger or frustration if you don't snub out the lies. So a little information can go a long way towards fighting back all those negative feelings. So we got just that yesterday and today.
We received official word that Gabriella finally has her passport. 2 weeks ago we were told she would have it by the end of the week. They had applied for 13 passports and within the week had 9 of them. But of course Gabriella's wasn't one of them. They have to hand caligraphy them, and there is no reason why she didn't get hers with that group. But without the passport we couldn't progress to the next step. But we have hers now and are ready for our final step before we can travel.
That final step is birth family interviews. There are 11 children coming home in the next two weeks. We are at the top of the list after that group (mainly because we have been waiting the longest of all remaining parents at this final phase - today is the 1 year anniversary of us travelling down this road of adoption). So tenatively on the 15th or 16th of December our cases will be reviewed by Liberian Social Workers to make sure everything is in order before the US Consulate interviews the birth moms. So depending on how long it takes them to accomplish this and whether the interviews at the US Embassy go well, then we travel 2 weeks later. Now this could take a day, a couple weeks, or a month or two. The Embassy closes for 2 weeks in January sometime, so that will add to the delay if it doesn't happen before that. So the absolute best scenerio is we travel that last week of December. The most likely scenerio is we travel in February.
So we are in our final phase of waiting. We appreciate your encouragement and prayers. We look forward to the future with much anticipation. We know a much more difficult period awaits us once we get the children home. But it is our hope that a year from now that Gabriella and Josiah will be a well-adjusted part of our family and we'll be trying to remember what it was like before they came.