Every tree limb overhead seems to sit and wait, while every step you take becomes a twist of fate.
Up on the watershed, standing at the fork in the road...

If you are new to our adoption blog please take a moment to scroll down to the archives at the bottom of this page and start with July 2009 post "Watershed."


back on the rollercoaster...

Hey Everyone,

Sometimes the blog feels like a diary and other times it feels like I'm writing letters to friends.
Today I'm writing a letter to everyone who's been reading along, whether I know you or not, to ask for some advice.

I stepped away from the ride for a few days and tried to just get back to work and into the swing of life at home.

Yesterday I was dragged back on.

First, our "Notice of Favorable Determination" arrived from US.CIS. This is the I171H form. Good news! It is the form we were dying to get fingerprinted for before I left to travel. But now I have no idea what to do next. I love AAI but I'm a little confused about the next step in the paperwork. Is it over? Can someone with experience please comment and tell me?

Then, this morning, I got an email from WACAP. Did I mention that I sent the photos of T to our former WACAP contact to pass along to her new family? I did this with equal part hope that it would bring them joy and equal part hope that WACAP would tell me that actually their adoption fell through and T was available again. Just being honest here. You know I always promised I'd be real...

So this morning I got the email. Saying that T's adoptive mom loved the pictures and wants me to email her. WACAP sent me her email address and said it's up to me. I don't know why I didn't see that coming but I really didn't at all. I hoped for a few word thank you and promise they would adore her. NOT a request to email.

J thinks I should say no and then put this behind me and forget it.

I am dying of curiosity. But equally devastated again. What if I think she's great? What if I think she's horrible? Oh yuck. yuck. yuck. More than anything I want to know where T will be in the U.S. when she comes home. But why? Why do I want to know that? I can't see clearly here at all.

What do you ladies (and Jon who I think reads this) think I should do?
Serious advice needed.



  1. 1. I have no idea how your agency does paperwork; with Buckner we had to have the 171, fingerprints and approval (can't remember the # of the approval form) all included IN our dossier before it would ever be sent over.

    2. I think you should email her and at least give her a little insight into her child; as an adoptive mom, anytime anyone went over and visited Ellie I wanted any information I could get - does she smile, were her nails trimmed, how tall was she was, ANYTHING! I cannot imagine how hard it will be for you to communicate with her adoptive mom but think she deserves a little glimpse into her future daughter's life. Any news about your child is better than nothing and makes the wait time bearable.

    Okay, not what you wanted to hear, I know. Sorry friend - hang in there!

  2. I would write up some nice things about T. ANY info is like gold to parents with kiddos waiting on court dates. But send it to the agency to pass on to her. Tell them you don't want to contact her directly...they should understand! Good Luck...I know this is tough for you!! I'm sure your wait will not be much longer!!

  3. You're now in the business of advocating for T albeit not as her mother. Email her to-be mother and help be a better mother. She is dying for any and all information. Information that you have!

    And this is the way life long friendships are created. Your children will likely spend time together at the same place in ET. You will, God willing, be parenting similar children. Sounds like the right stuff for a great friendship.

    FInally, I think it will help you start to love T as an aunt and not as a to-be mama. Make room for #3!!!!

    Congrats on the I-171H!!! You might think the paperwork is done but IT IS NEVER DONE. Seriously, take a pause and just wait. Once you meet your #3 then there is more paper work. Then once you pass court there is more paper work for the visa. Then once you get to ET there is more paperwork. Then once you get home there is even more paperwork. And then .....you get the idea.

  4. Our agency requires the I-171H to be included in the dossier before it's sent to country. Call your agency and ask them what they want with it. They may not want anything. In all reality it's just letting YOU know that USCIS has processed your info and sent it along to Addis Ababa.

    And, I would email if only to give a nugget of information to the waiting mother. I would put yourself in her position-wouldn't you want to know everything you could, especially from someone who just saw her, held her, touched her?

    You may not like her, but it's not up to you to like her. It breaks my heart to say it-but for whatever reason, it wasn't meant to be. Perhaps you will actually like this family and your daughter and T will grow up to be best friends?! The one thing I've learned from this process is that there are beautiful, beautiful souls out there. And, I've met many of them (including you) through adoption. You create this extended family of sorts that has your back through your trials and tribulations. This woman, T's mother, could be another one. You may get the joy of seeing her grow up while also getting the joy of having your own little (A-Z?) with you.

    If you feel it's going to be too difficult to keep it cordial, then don't email. But, I have a feeling you want to and you're just looking for us to tell you what you already know.

    Good luck and please keep us posted about what is next with your agency. I cannot wait to hear that you've received your referral.

  5. you may not want my advice cause i do not have experience directly related to this. so .. feel free to change the channel.... I would wait. you can't take it back once it's out there and right now... too emotional. too close. It would be for me. I'd need time. I'd fight like all heck against the temptation to create a link to her- until.. later. my 2 cents.

  6. I know this is tough. Honestly I would email T's adoptive mom. Anything about the child you love and long to bring home is like gold. It would be a selfless gift for you to contact her and tell her that you loved on her baby if only for a moment. You never know what God has planned for that relationship. She reached out to you and while it may be painful I think it could also be very healing.

    (((HUGS))) to you. I'm still confused, I thought you were a WACAP family so I'm lost somewhere. Glad your happy with AAI, praying you get your referral soon.

  7. I do not think you should email the mom. I think as hard as it is, you need to move past T. Try to channel all your energy to your own future child. My two cents! -Seema


About Me

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J and I have been married for almost 15 years. We have shared many adventures and a lot of watershed moments. In 2009 I began blogging and in 2010 we adopted our daughter from Ethiopia. In March of 2012 we began the process to adopt a little boy from Haiti. This blog follows the many twists and turns on the road to our two children and beyond.