Tomorrow is my 29th birthday. I thought I would have a difficult time with this – my last year as a 20-something. But I have a big reason to look forward to my 30’s. Jordan and I have decided to adopt from Haiti instead of Bulgaria.
What does this have to do with my 30’s? Every country has a specific set of criteria that the adoptive family must meet before they are even allowed on the country’s waiting list including age, length of marriage, mandatory in-country travel time, etc. For Bulgaria, the magic age is 25 years or older which is why we had originally chosen it. Truth be told, all other countries seemed out of reach because of their stipulations and Bulgaria was the only country that fit us. Last year, when we first started our journey, we were both 27 and were ready to hit the ground running. We did. Just not in the way we expected. We bought our house and started a series of renovations that we believed needed to be accomplished before we really began our home study. The renovations took longer than either of us anticipated. After talking to our adoption agency, I learned that the wait time for a child in our age range who is generally healthy has increased from 4 years to 5 years. This is due to the infrastructure of the Bulgarian national adoption system stabilizing. People who are citizens of Bulgaria are adopting children now more than ever. Those applicants are put at the top of the list above any international family. Haiti’s policy, on the other hand, is that one parent must be at least 30 years old. Haiti is struggling with poverty, poor governing and natural disasters. The wait time for a child in the age range and health that we are considering is about 2 years.
Maybe this seems like when you are at the grocery store waiting to check out and see another line seems to be moving faster so you jump over there just hoping you can get through a little quicker. And in all honesty, that has something to do with it. We are impatient and are anxious to meet the person who will complete our family. But changing countries is not just jumping the line. We have been praying and discussing this, seeking God’s heart and guidance. What I know for sure is there is a child somewhere in the world that needs us. We are just trying to follow where God is leading. At this point, Haiti is on our hearts. Please continue to pray for us as we make this shift.
Tomorrow I turn 29 and six months from now we will begin our home study. While we wait for that 6-month mark, our lives will be very busy with work, the upcoming Holidays, a family wedding (our little sister is going to be Mrs.!!!), several family birthdays, a BIG family vacation to Disney World, and Sadie’s 7th birthday! One year from tomorrow, we will submit our dossier to the Haitian adoption program and officially be on the wait list for our child (that is our goal anyway)! So, bring on the last of my 20’s! This year is going to be big steps – and 30 will be the beginning of a new chapter.