Friday, April 11, 2014

Any day now?

We're living our lives, going to family events, plugging away on getting the house "home study visit ready."  Still trying not to let the wait get to us, but of course it does, though we try to keep faith that everything will work out in the end.

Like other families who set out on the journey to adopt from Kazakhstan, we've started to have the "what if Kazakhstan never opens" conversations -- with each other and with our adoption agency.

There are rumors that Kazakhstan will open within the next few weeks.  But, of course, there have been rumors like this before, and nothing really came of them. No one seems to know anything, but there's hope, of course.  Even so, our agency does not want to string us along, and we have talked about what do to if there's no movement from Kazakhstan.

There are other options, of course.

There's Ukraine, but the general political instability there concerns us, even if adoptions are continuing to be processed. (At least for now -- who knows what tomorrow will bring?)  They also have a policy/process of "traveling blind" without a referral, and the children available are all age 5 and above or have moderate to severe special needs.  We have great respect for families who are called to adopt special needs children, but at this time, as first time parents, we do not feel that we are called in that direction.  Even if we were, however, traveling blind leads to very little time to review the child(ren) and their medical files.  We don't feel this is a good fit for us.

Then there's Bulgaria.  They have a good solid program, but their wait times for a referral are higher, so we'd prefer to keep this program as more of a "last resort."  They also don't seem to allow adoption of children under the age of two, which isn't a deal breaker for us exactly, but would narrow down the diversity (and potential number) of sibling groups that would work for us due to my younger age.

Latvia is another option, though a limited one due to my age and the fact that they rarely allow children under the age of nine to be adopted.  However, we are willing to explore this option if a waiting sibling group we qualify for becomes available.  If this happens, our agency will call us.  However, if we get much farther with another country, this option would no longer be viable, which is fine, because at least we would then be moving forward.

Kyrgyzstan is currently our first choice back-up country.  They are very culturally similar to Kazakhstan, and they are a Russian speaking country (many also speak Kyrgyz, but the orphanage we would adopt from is Russian speaking), which is good as we have been learning Russia. Kyrgyzstan borders Kazakhstan and is also a former Soviet republic.  There is less time in country on the first trip that Kazakhstan requires, though, and we have come to see the 30 day bonding period as a major blessing.  They are also not currently open, though they have allowed agencies in the US to apply to become accredited by the Kyrgyz government.  This country is at the "any day now" point in terms of announcing which agencies are accredited -- and our agency has applied.  The hope is that, following accreditation, Kyrgyzstan would accept dossiers fairly quickly, though this isn't guaranteed.

So where does this leave us?

Waiting, still, though waiting with more options, especially with Kyrgyzstan seemingly serious about reopening their adoption process. 

If Kyrgyzstan opens (meaning they've accepted our agency and are also accepting dossiers from US families), we will continue to wait for Kazakhstan until our anniversary in mid-May.  At that point, if Kazakhstan isn't open, we will pursue Kyrgyzstani adoption.

We appreciate prayers and support during this time of decision -- both for our own decision making and that of the countries involved.

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