Saturday, July 6, 2013

We are home....

This two week journey just simply seems so surreal. There are so many layers in all of this. But most importantly, we had to leave Shadrack in Liberia....after much bonding with him. The bottom line, in all of this, he is the one who suffers...we are devastated beyond belief, but he truly is the one suffering here....

So back to Tuesday the 2nd of July.
We were once again denied a Visa for Shadrack. So we knew at that moment...probably 3 pm that we were going to need to leave Shadrack at the orphanage when we left on Wednesday...That evening, Wayne, Nate and I decided to walk the half mile down to the Golden Key Hotel/Restaurant to have dinner...none of us felt like cooking that night....

A moment that I am hanging onto happened at the restaurant. We were at a round table and Nate was on my right, Wayne was on my left. I had Shadrack standing on my lap facing me. I was conversing with the guys.. I looked at Shadrack and started talking to him. He KNEW INSTANTLY when I started talking to him. He got a big smile on his face....and he reached up to gently touch my cheek. ONE precious moment that still brings tears to my eyes.

So, leaving him in Liberia was a hard step we had to face. Getting on the plane I just simply wanted to scream, cry, yell at anyone who cared to listen....We were both devastated and I had to hold it together for the sake of the 200 others on our plane.

Back Stateside, Christina's family and friends started a campaign with some local Politicians. Currently we have Klobachars office helping to expedite a few things for us....for this we are truly grateful!
So bottom line, and the true facts....

1. We shouldn't have applied for the Visa that we applied for. The Embassy simply isn't issuing those at this time. From what few things we have been able to figure out, there has been corrupt things happening with these Visa's and they will not issue them. Plus it would have been nearly impossible 6 months down the road to fully adopt him. The Embassy in reality did us some favors by NOT issuing this type of Visa.

2. We shouldn't have gone the guardianship route. It is messy, and now Shadrack is affected by that. With the Guardianship route, we obtain legal guardianship over him. Which we have. We obtain the Visa, get him medical care and assess the situation after medical care. If he were to remain blind, we would adopt him. If he has a chance to see again, we help him with that, and bring him back to his mom. Which is the best place for him. But given his current situation, he would be sacrificed if he were to stay with his mom in their tribe.

3. We believe Acres of Hope did what they think is best for the boys, but we are unsure if they actually knew how to navigate these waters. Currently they boys are at the AOH orphanage.  The nannies love them. It is clean. The children get fed. That is comforting to us in this moment. If it wasn't so costly, we can fly over there anytime and take the boys out of the orphanage as much as we want. We are their guardians.

4. We are working towards full adoption. Klobachar's office will be working to help us expedite both the home study...possibly 2 weeks. And the I600a with Immigration...possibly another 2 weeks. In reality, if things go well, we could have the boys in a month. But we are expecting longer...that way we are won't have our hopes set on it being 4 weeks. After the homestudy, AOH has about a weeks worth of stuff to finish up, which can be during the timing of the I600. Our prayers are that things can go off without a hitch. And fast!!!

5. Going the adoption route means traveling to Liberia again...We are torn about this. We loved being there. We just were simply not crazy about all the road blocks we had while there. It was a very frustrating process of hurry up and wait. Currently we are looking at
$2400 for home study.
$2100 for flight...not sure if one or both of us need to go
$1000 for lodging and food while there.

So it isn't going to be cheap...and our first concern is getting the home study complete. We are completely bummed that we put money into the flight at this point only to not have brought him home. But we wouldn't trade the time spent with Shadrack for the world. We believe God will bless this, we feel like we are his parents and we will get him home!

6. We started Hope Blooms almost five years ago. Through that, we have taken many courses. But we narrowed it down to providing support services to families that have adopted. That is where our passions lie. We also provide fun things for kids to do a few times a year...This journey has awakened in me a passion to check into helping other families adopt in Liberia....helping the process go smoothly. We will be looking into getting Hague certified. And partnering possibly with an organization from Africa. We have started the talk...but need to meet with them first. So we will still provide support services, but also be the American side of adopting from Liberia. Adoptions could open up in the next month...instead of just special needs adoptions. We are excited to start this part also. There are some pretty amazing kids, and Liberians thanked us many times for taking Shadrack to America to help him. They know their health care stinks.

In the guest house we stayed in, there was a house boy who stayed in a small house out back. His name is Chris. When we got back to America, he had sent Wayne a text asking if we made it back ok. And asking if we were ok. He saw how upset we were. That is what Liberia is....caring for others...we got asked for money plenty of times. But they are a friendly bunch. Had no trouble stopping what they were doing and staring at the white people carrying the black babies. We tried to fit in, but the strollers and front carrying packs simply do not fit in.

Liberia is listed as an unsafe country to visit. We never once felt that we were unsafe. In fact, a couple times we left the Golden Key restaurant a little later than planned and were walking in the dark. We felt totally safe...had lots of people praying for us in Liberia and home in America. We learned alot of history about Liberia to share with the boys some day. We cannot wait to do that! But more importantly we cannot wait to bring Shadrack home. James and Shadrack have both been in the same orphanage...for how long we don't know...

I have been dreading writing this post...I simply did not want to be on this side of the journey posting that we do not have Shadrack home with us. But the story will continue....and we hope to have him home in 4-6 weeks....



Hechtel's said...

THANKS FOR SHARING! I know it had to be a very tough thing to write but, we all know what is happening and we can help you in any way you need. Prayers, phone calls, fundraising etc. Please continue to post with updates and needs so we can all help you BRING SHADRACH & James home to their families.

Linda said...

Just know that you have all of us praying big for all of you. We can not always know the outcome, but always know Our Lord is within us!!!! Sending BIG PRAYERS from the PNW!!!!

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About Me

Minnesota, United States
I am a wife, mother to five children, 2 cats, 3 dogs. Hoping to be a mother to more children someday through adopting waiting children in Minnesota.