We’ve had a great few weeks and a marathon of visits and fun with friends and relatives-Seattle, Las Vegas, St. George, Provo. A few days of adoption paperwork and more days of sunshine. Amanda (on far left with her 5 siblings and Sam and Emma) came home from her mission in New Zealand this week, so we got to see all kinds of cousins and hear her homecoming…so wonderful. Sweet kind support from Tom's brother and sister in law.
Just yesterday, we received news by email that the judge wants the birth mom to be present in court so she can confirm she is okay with the kids being internationally adopted. The social worker in Taiwan thinks that the date we can pick them up will move from April sometime to the end of May, so we’ve had 24 hours of deep breathing and freak outs. I literally had to breathe slowly in and out because my chest was feeling like it would burst. From all the information we’ve gotten, the birth mom’s rights were terminated at least 1 ½ years ago; she hasn’t had custody for at least 3 years, so we were baffled why she would be sought out. The irony is that I VERY much want to meet her or have some kind of contact, pictures, or information about her because I know that the kids would someday want to know all of that about her. But I was confused as to what her role in court would be; can she say she doesn’t want them adopted internationally and it all stalls or what?
I called our agency worker in Taiwan this morning and talked through some of these points. She and the social work department were equally surprised that the judge ordered this—and the bottom line is that LEGAL trumps all. Whatever is required legally is what must happen and what we will live by. The judge can ask that she be notified once or twice or three times…whatever….and however long it takes, oh well, that’s how long it takes.
We had a few moments of “What do we do now?” Do we fly out as planned tomorrow or change everything? This very thing was why the agency asks that families wait til they are notified to travel (10 days in advance)…because everything can change and they have no control over what could happen. We knew that when we chose to buy tickets but Tom and I feel fairly calm...or at least we became calm over a period of 12 hours. My bottom line question has been to look at the big picture…over a lifetime. Is there a significant difference between 1 month in Taiwan or 2 months in Taiwan over a lifetime of living? Nope…This can be an amazing learning experience for the kids (and the parents). We are lucky to have enough flexibility with schooling and other activities that if we must stay there for the process, we can. Of course, much of this depends on the English school we are planning to volunteer at…that is what makes it an affordable option to be there since we’re volunteering in exchange for room and board. I feel pretty sure that it will work out. And I guess if it doesn’t, we’ll figure out the alternative next step.
|Sam and Sam in St. George|