We received some interesting news this week about the timing of our referral (aka., getting matched with a child). Chris is scheduled to deploy in Spring of 2013, to return in the Fall of 2013. This deployment seems pretty certain right now. The military often changes their minds/schedules/etc., but this one seems unlikely to change. I am so very glad we let our social worker at Holt know about this schedule. She had some very interesting news for us. Thailand can only "hold up" a couple coming to get their child for less than 1 month. After that, too bad, so sad, that child will go to someone else deemed more fit. I see their reasoning: if you can't come get your child right away, we'll give them to someone who can, and what kind of parents are you, anyways, isn't this child the most important thing in the world to you? Also, both parents have to be present to get their child and appear before the adoption board. I don't even think Thailand allows single people to adopt, so this may explain some of their reasoning on this one. (Shh, don't tell them Chris will probably deploy about 6-10 times in the next 16 years... they might just tear up our dossier altogether...)
And yes, we prayerfully considered how a military lifestyle and daddy being gone on deployments would affect our future children. We know that adoption can often make future losses even harder for a child, so it really is a lot to ask of them. We prayed, we felt a peace about it that God would give us strength and help us give our little ones everything they need to cope. We just couldn't say no to children who need families. We might not seem like the perfect family on paper, but we're going to give it all we've got :)
So back to the timing issue, there are really only two options: Either we will get a ridiculouslycrazyinsaneunexplainablemiraculous early match this March. (Absolutely not likely at all, I mean less than 1% chance... we are #13, other couples are open to medical conditions, this would absolutely be God placing a little one in our hands and saying, "This is my will, this child is for you, this is my timing." OR... we will get matched next March. Holt will hold us back from a match for June, September, and December referrals, and then jump us back into the referral group for March of 2013.
Why is this: A June 2012 match would put us getting our child sometime between March and May 2013. Either just in time for Chris' deployment, or just after... no good, and Chris needs to be present for at least one post-placement visit. (They happen at 2,4, and 6 months home with our child.) A September match is even worse, right in the middle of Chris' deployment....not happening. A December match is too iffy: He might not be back in time to go get our child. And we can't imagine if the timing didn't work out, having to give up our precious one just because Thailand couldn't delay things one more month for us.
So March of 2013 it is (barring the miracle I mentioned above.) Then we would be set to get our child in Thailand around December 2013-February 2014. There are many positives to this: Chris and I would have gotten through our first deployment. We will have 2 YEARS to prepare for being parents, to grow in our faith, to save for maybe 3 more adoptions. 2 YEARS to read and learn about adoption, to learn Thai, to collect darling little trinkets and make and sew treasures for our long-awaited child. 2 YEARS to learn patience, and maturity, and trust in God.
Before you start thinking, "Wow, I wish I had her patience, what a great attitude!" A few days ago, this was NOT where my heart was. A few days ago, I said to Chris, "I hate your stupid job! Why can't you just deploy now?" Wow, that's pretty hurtful. I basically said, "I'm not thankful for the extra year God has given us together before your first deployment, just leave so we can get a child faster...." And, "I hate your stupid job." is pretty much the biggest lie I've ever told. I am so incredibly proud of Chris and what he does. I can't imagine him doing anything else. I can't imagine not being a Marine Corps wife. This is God's purpose for us right now. I have no doubts about that. I let my emotions and my immaturity get the best of me. Something I really need to work on in the next 2 years. Chris, as usual, stayed completely calm, and patient, and waited until I was ready to apologize 10 minutes later. (It doesn't usually take me too long after an outburst to realize I was a total jerkface.) Why can't I just shove a cookie in my mouth or something?
Thankfully, God has humbled me. He has gently let me know, once again, that He's in control of all of this. We will have our child when He wants us to have our child. We will have the child He wants us to have. We will trust Him in the meantime. A few weeks ago, God led me to Isaiah 49. I shared this passage with a friend, who was also struggling with waiting through their adoption process. Little did I know that God was speaking to me too. In this passage, Isaiah is telling the Israelites what Jesus will someday do. The Israelites have been in exile in Babylon for over 2 generations. When finally, there is hope. The Persian King Cyrus overthrows Babylon and frees the Israelites. I'm claiming this truth for my life...for all the children out there waiting patiently for their families and unconditional love...
Isaiah 49: 14-18 (emphasis mine)
14"But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me,
the Lord has forgotten me.”
15 “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!
16 See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;
your walls are ever before me.
17 Your children hasten back,
and those who laid you waste depart from you.
18 Lift up your eyes and look around;
all your children gather and come to you. As surely as I live,” declares the LORD,
“you will wear them all as ornaments;
you will put them on, like a bride.
Oh, and if we do get that ridiculouslycrazyinsaneunexplainablemiraculous early match this March... you'll be the first to know :)