Wow! A lot has happened since the last entry. The visit with my brother and his wife was nice. We got a family picture, including two of my cousins, an aunt, and my grandma. My Baba, who has been living with my parents since Nov 2007, is doing fine. She's starting to really show her mind's deterioration, but is still hanging on. It was really nice to spend the week with her, hearing her story again, and enjoying the Ukrainian language.
Everything kind of happened at once after that. BSF started Sept 9th, I started a job Sept 10th, new volunteering opportunity Sept 10th, another volunteering opportunity Sept 11th, and was ready to give up something Sept 12th. I had two emotional breakdowns that week because it all seemed like so much! But God is good, and He placed me in the right job with the right manager.
Yes, you heard me right. I have a job, finally! I'm working at Sears in the shoe dept, and at first I didn't think I'd enjoy it for long. But I'm starting to get to know my coworkers and I really enjoy the customer service aspect of the job. It's not a very high stress dept, and I really appreciate that. Everyone in the dept acts like an adult, so my manager, or dept lead, can treat us like adults.
I turned 31 at the beginning of Sept. It's the best birthday ever because I'll be 31 when I become a mom. How exciting! We've been saying that a lot lately...this will be the last time we (insert vacation, holiday, etc) before we're parents!
The adoption has advanced to the next big step. I've been trying to explain to people where the adoption is in comparison to pregnancy. The paperwork/home study part is like the attempts to conceive. It can be a long and tedious process at times, but in the end it's rewarding. Handing in our dossier to our adoption agency is like taking a pregnancy test and waiting for the results. We received confirmation that all the documents are perfect, so our adoption agency is sending the documents to the Ukraine on Monday (yes...this Monday) to be translated!!! We are officially in the pregnancy stage.
I anticipate the first few months to be beyond excited; we'll hear about when the documents have been translated and what comes next (kind of like hearing the heartbeat for the first time, and getting that first ultrasound picture). And we'll start nesting and preparing for a child (or children...we're still praying for twins) with eager anticipation. But at some point, we're going to be ready for our child(ren) to come home so we can be a family (kind of like the last few weeks of pregnancy).
I have a feeling the waiting is going to be torture for me, so I'm thankful I'm really busy. This is going to be a growing time for us, as we prepare for our child(ren), get excited when we hear we're going, and feel disappointment as delays come. But I know my God is powerful and His timing is perfect. He has taught me that much, at least.
Most of you know we've been applying for grants, scholarships, and no interest loans for some time now. We've been denied for all of them. However, we did get find some fundraisers that we're going to try. I was really discouraged and a bit overwhelmed by the denial letters. But God is good, and He uses those types of things to bring us back to Him. He is the provider, not any organization or person. And He provided for me in a big way. I was bringing a friend up to speed with the adoption, letting her know about one of our fundraisers. She was soooo enthusiastic and volunteered to take the catalogue to the drama team (which I've been a part of, but had to drop out of because of the job) to see if anyone would be interested. I almost cried right there. The following week, God used a variety of my friends to encourage me (without them even knowing it). What an awesome God!
We've started two fundraisers. The first is a candle fundraiser, kind of like the fundraisers schools have. You order a candle from a catalogue, and half the retail cost is given to us for our adoption. The second is a money request. We've found an agency that will help us raise up to 50% of the cost of the adoption. We send you info, and you send them a check that gets credited to us. You get a tax deduction, and we let the organization know when we need money for the adopion. It's a win, win situation.
Well, I guess it's time to wait, and wait and wait....