Monday, July 16, 2012

Limbo... No More


[lim-boh] noun
" an intermediate, transitional, or midway state or place."
I find this word remarkably appropriate for the adoption process. There are so many of these times.  During the "paper chase," the mad dash to acquire every applicable and possibly relevant form, report, document, photograph or test result, there are inevitably periods of waiting for someone else to do something. And then you send your packet off and there is more waiting.  And then more.  No end in sight, no idea WHEN something might happen. 
I hate waiting.
: / 
I am terribly impatient. I'm not big on change (ask my mom about when she painted the bathroom when I was about 5...), but once I decide I'm ready for a change, I want it NOW. I want to see movement, action, progress. 
Adoption doesn't work that way - especially international adoption. You are stuck on the timeline of another country, and many individuals within that country (not to mention the US immigration department and your agency!). 
As we neared the end of our process for Abi and Hana's adoption in late 2007, we thought for sure we'd travel before Christmas. But we hit snag after snag until we could finally bring them home in March.  Then we moved like lightening with Selam, thinking that bringing her home before Christmas 2008 was practically guaranteed... and she didn't touch US soil until August 1, 2009.  We put our lives on hold. Nothing could be planned - we were ready to travel on a moment's notice.  Ready and waiting at all times. Both times I gained weight (stress-eater). 
Those months were some of the hardest of my life.  Stalking my email. Waiting for news.  Making travel reservations and cancelling them (heart breaking each.and.every.time.) 
In the middle of waiting to pass court with Selam's case, I lost my dad. When you lose someone that close to you, that young, in such an abrupt way, it makes you think about the fragility of life. About not wasting time.  About enjoying the here and now.  
And yet, it is so easy to slip into that feeling of limbo. Waiting for the "next thing" and not enjoying today, not seizing the opportunities here.
I have been more conscious of this limbo-tendency I have during this process to adopt JS. For the most part, things have been moving very quickly. Up until late spring/early summer. But since then, it has often felt like this process screeched to a halt. I find myself slipping back into that limbo-mindset. Trying to make plans, but always with a caveat, an out, a "maybe." Always with the hope that we'll be in Colombia by then (Halloween? Thanksgiving? Surely by Christmas...?).  But I just don't know. No one does.  
And I can't live like that. It's not good for me or my family.  

I decided I needed a focus beyond "waiting for JS" and beyond survival. 
So I took a leap.
A scary, scary leap.
A this-is-too-big-I-can't-do-this-commitment.
Except... I can. I can do this. 
So... I finally registered.

October 21st.
Detroit, I'm coming for you.