Sunday, November 8, 2009


Wow. We are at 4 months. Average time to a toddler referral is... NOW. Longest waiting families currently on the list have waited 5 months... but all that means is that SOMETIME IN THE NEXT 60 DAYS WE ARE GOING TO GET OUR REFERRAL!!! (For those not steeped in the adoption vernacular, the referral is when the case worker from your agency calls you up and says, "I have news!" at which point you and your husband drop whatever it is you are doing immediately and rush home to sit in front of the computer at which point you call said case worker back and tell her that you are together in front of the computer and she then emails you the photos and bio info on your new child!!! So you can see... that referral is pretty important!!!!) (It still takes approximately 3-5 months from the point when you accept your referral before all is set for you to travel over to get your baby, though. But it's THE HUGE STEP we are all waiting for in this adoption process! Well, until we start waiting for her to get a court date in Ethiopia, and then to pass court, and then to get a date at the US Embassy in Addis Ababa, and then to get our travel dates... but first we gotta get that REFERRAL!)

I am so thankful for the place I am in right now- anyone who has read this blog longer than 5 minutes knows that I've had my fair share of freak outs during this process. I'm not saying they are gone for good... I'm sure just about the time I'm putting my family on a plane to Africa I shall have the biggest freak out of all, but as of right now, I'm feeling sooooo peaceful and soooooo excited! I honestly can't wait to see her face or their faces!

It's so tempting to imagine seeing her face for the first time in the pictures and bio info that will be emailed to us by our caseworker- it's so easy to imagine seeing those pics and falling in love. But I'm not putting any pressure on myself to feel any kind of instant magical connection when I first get the email with the pictures and bio information attached. I know some people do- and I think that is amazing and great and beautiful... but I don't want to feel like something is wrong if I don't instantly fall in love with a picture. I mean- who wouldn't hope for love at first sight in this circumstance, though, right? But I'm just going to try to take whatever my initial thoughts or feelings are and be okay with them. Whether or not I feel an instant connection with a picture, she is going to be my daughter! What do you think- those who have adopted before me- what did YOU feel when you first saw pictures of your child or children? Was your connection instant or did it grow over the days and weeks between when you first saw that face and the time to travel?

So... any guesses on the day we will get the call??? Any one want to place any bets??? What day do you think will be the...

...lucky day???


Kimberlie said...

I will say that when I saw my children's faces, I had an immediate heart connection. In the case of #2 and #3, it took me a while to figure out that the tug I was feeling was because they were meant to be MINE. However, and this is a HUGE HOWEVER, my children in reality did not live up to my fantasies of our first meeting. I thought they would love me instantly, but in reality it took them some time, some longer than others, to really let their defenses down and let me be their forever mommy. So keep that in mind so you won't be crushed if it happens. It may not because all children are different and all situations are different. Just don't freak out and call yourself a terrible mother if you don't instantly love the reality of them. :)

OK, as for my guess about when you will get the call, I say November 25 because it's the day before Thanksgiving. I don't know why, but big things always seem to happen for me before big days. How great would it be for you to be able to share that news with your family as you gather around the table for Thanksgiving?

Whatever day it is, it's going to be GREAT!!!

Beautiful Mess said...

Wow-that is the first "spam" comment I have EVER seen--interesting. {I am sure it will get deleted so in case it is after the fact I am NOT talking about Kimberlie's comment :)}

but... back to my comment--

I am guessing Nov 20. Just for guessing sake. Praying for TODAY!

Keep the faith! and be encouraged by Kimberlie's comment--I am not an adopting momma (yet) but I hear it can be hard--but God is IN the HARD THINGS! being a momma is the hardest thing but SOOOOO worth it as you well know with the two blessings you already have :)

Sohailah said...

November 27th - right when you are shopping all the sales... (p.s. super excited for you)

michelle said...

very exciting date guesses but i know someone who knows the exact date and has ordained it before the beginning of time. SOOOO COOL!!!!!

Lindsey said...

I am praying that the call comes soon, for both of us. You guys went on the wait list just a few days before us and so I am hoping that the 25 times a day I check your blog will soon result in the word REFERRAL on it so it can be our turn! How cool would that be to meet in Addis to pick up our children together! Love your blog!


Tracy said...

HI! I saw your comment on the Bottomly's blog wondering how they knew where they were on the UNOFFICIAL wait list. This is where we get our info:

I hope you get your referral real soon!

Amy Bottomly said...

Hey Gayla... I only know our unofficial number. There is a woman out there who has a list she calls the FBI list.. I can't believe you don't know about it!

Scroll to the bottom and there are some tiny subtitles to click on... paperchase, waitlist, referral, etc. Under waitlist you can see when different families when on the waitlist... she has quite a few on there! It does seem to be mostly infants, but there are two families ahead of us that are getting older kids/siblings. Also you can look at referrals and see who all has gotten a referral and for which age and how long its taking to pass court. ;) She has her email there if you want to be added to the unofficial list. :)

It has become quite the obsession as we are now at the top for a girl.:)

zach+kate said...

Gayla, I am guessing December 1st. Our little Max Theodore is 7 months old and our situation is a little different with having a domestic (open) adoption. I have to say I was shocked when I saw him...he was completely different that the child I had pictured. And though I loved him immediately, I was just very conscious of the fact that he was adopted. Now, I don't think of him as "adopted," just my son...and I really can't picture life without him. Look forward to reading about when you get "the call!"

Anonymous said...

I'm going to post anon and I hope you don't mind.
I did not feel "love at first sight" when I first saw pictures of my niece. She looked forlorn and was dressed in blue. I smiled and giggled because pictures were being taken of my reaction but through my smile I said, "she looks like a boy" and "she's not very pretty." I was excited to finally see pictures of her and excited that we finally knew about her but most of my comments were "Wow such pretty eyes!" I did not expect this reaction and I was very sad to not fall head over heels for her.
We were very blessed to receive additional pictures from families that had traveled. It really made a difference in the pictures when people were interacting with her and trying to get a smile. It did not take long for me to see how beautiful she really was.
No haters please! I know that most people say that they are instantly in love but I do want to share that it might not happen that way.

Gayla said...

Anonymous- I so appreciate your honesty! I hope for those "love at first sight" feelings, but if they are not there I do not want to feel like I am a loser or that I am not the right mommy for her or that this is a big mistake... I'm just gonna trust that God has it all in His hands and that I will love her with that fierce mommy love in time. Thank you for being real!!!

Selam! G'day! Hello!