I know by now you are expecting me to be blogging about bringing our baby boy home. Unfortunately I can't blog about that yet. We are still waiting to pass court. Our case is one of the few that are still pending.
As we correspond with our case worker daily now, we are on the roller coaster ride of our lives. It has almost been 3 months since we were supposed to pass court. We are still waiting on one solitary piece of paperwork that the regional officials have the power to push through. On Christmas day, we were told that the officials had indicated that they would be pushing paperwork in the "very" near future (as in a few days). We were certain it would be our Christmas miracle. Certain. So certain that I bought t-shirts that say "Abat" and "Enat," which is "Father" and "Mother" in Jude's mother tongue, Amharic. We were claiming it. Since that week came and went without movement, we have been told that the regional officials "promised" to approve the pending cases 2 weeks ago. Still nothing.
Today, we were told that the officials have begun to process regional paperwork, but that they are starting from the "top down." To clarify, they are starting with the last cases to be submitted. Our's was the very first. That means our's will be dead last. There are no words to describe our frustration at this point. We now understand what it means to fight for the orphan. We have some concrete under our fingernails and we're not finished yet.
We are in a strange limbo-land with our homestudy. Right now it's a gamble whether or not to update it (long story....I won't bore you). It is probably more safe to update than to not, but let me tell you how much we DON't want to. We want to spend that time and money on our son. We want to bring him home so bad we can taste it. It's all we dream about, think about, talk about, pray about. It's maddening.
As I sit here and work on our 3rd set of home study papers, my to-do list is long. I have to get fingerprints scheduled, medical clearance for the entire family, reference questionnaires for family/friends/Evan's teacher delivered in order to be completed, maps printed, employment verification letters, criminal and child abuse checks filed, income tax paperwork, and all this in addition to the pages of questions that still need answered. What kills us is that our lives HAVE NOT changed since 2009, when we started this process. Our home study is essentially the exact carbon copy of what it was in 2010 and 2011. Our status has not changed. Regardless, we have to pay the fees and complete the said paperwork in order to bring Jude home.
We are in anxious anticipation for the day Jude's status changes. His first birthday is one week from today. He will spend it in the orphanage he calls home, with the nannies who love him, but without a mommy or a daddy. He will not know the feel of cake icing between his little fingers nor silly hats and weird noise-makers. He will not know about his family who is celebrating his first birthday without him, an ocean away.
Jason and I have been on our knees more in the last 3 months than ever in our lives. We are crying out to God to change Jude's status. We cleaned out his room this weekend and have been praying through his room for his status to change. Every night we are holding hands as a family and praying for God to bring Jude home soon. We are asking God to show Himself in a big BOLD way in order to change Jude's status from ORPHAN to SON.
Please pray with us, family and friends. We know you are behind us. Thank you for being with us for so long now and for continuing to lift us up. There are days like today that it's not easy. Days like today remind me that sometimes one set of footprints is sufficient. Looking forward to good news soon.
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.