Sunday, August 27, 2006

Prayer for adopted child

Following is a prayer I read from another adoptive families site. It is a jewish prayer. It really hit home for us so I decided to post it. Hope you like it....

WE DID NOT PLANT YOU, TRUE. But when the season is done, when the alternate prayers for the sun and for rain are counted. When the pain of weeding and the pride of watching are thru, we will hold you high. A shining leaf above the thousand seeds grown wild. Not by our planting, but by heaven. Our harvest. Our own child

Friday, August 25, 2006

Shhh...a quiet update

I want to give you the update of where we are, but I am afraid. Right now we are in a very good position and I don't want to "jinx" it by talking about it. So maybe if I briefly explain it, without a lot of flash, I can get it to you without calling the attention of the jinx trolls. Here goes....

Just a personal note before I begin....I am doing this under the prompt of a good friend, (you know who you are). If this goes sour, I am holding you responsible. remember the false prophet? The decreto? The one that promised to be a fix-all for us and then fell through? Well, it's back! First of all, decreto is spanish for decree. It was a decree issued by their body of government that is simliar to our law makers in the states. It is a temporary decree good for 90 days. When Palomo, our facilitator, went to Puerto Barrios last week, he was to plead with the courts for a date or the local PGN to allow us to finish the notarial way. But, instead he came back with a new birth certificate, by way of decreto. He is going to try and get us PGN approval with this new birth certificate. I have asked the AS if they think this will fly. They have given me a very honest, "I don't know." It seems we have a 50/50 chance. Either yes or no, (hmmm, brilliant). SOOOO, we were resubmitted to the ever dreadful, all consuming, PGN Thursday. Go ahead. You can squeal sounds of delight, but please do it quietly, you never know who's listening. I have been walking on cloud nine since we have gotten the news. My conservative side has repeated to me many times, "don't count your chickens..." and my happy go-lucky, let's celebrate side has said, "Oh life's too short. Go ahead and party, someone will pick up the trash tomorrow." That leaves us walking a balancing act of cautious celebration. We should know in about four weeks if they will allow this process. I pray they will. He occupies my every thought and if will alone was enough to get him here, he would have come home a long time ago.

So, please keep this in you prayers..pray that they will accept this rectification with the decreto and they approve our case soon. It wouldn't hurt to cross your fingers and rub your rabbit's foot either.

waiting "patiently",

Saturday, August 19, 2006

False Hope

Today we received great news!!! I went to check my email. Not really expecting anything. The last time I had spoken to AS, we confirmed that they would not hear any more news until at least the Monday of next week. So I was just going thru the motions, trying to find something to occupy my mind. And there it was...a email from AS. Hmmmm...that's curious. Why would they be writing me today? They started off with the heading that they had great news! There had been something called a detecto issued two days prior and they felt it would help our case. The detecto was basically a sort of free-for-all for all of the people experiencing trouble in completing their rectification from the civil registry's office. Apparently, the government had given the go ahead for everybody to go to the local registry, with birth mother in tow, and the appropriate paperwork would be issued, right there, johnny-on-the-spot. How great is that!?! That would mean we could abandon this whole other mess and hopefully be resubmitted to PGN within a couple of weeks. Oh, my prayers have been answered. Thank you God!

I quickly went to my address book and starting contacting the others that I knew of that were in the same boat. It's a miracle. We have all been given grace!

But, alas, this feeling of euphoria was short lived. Later in the afternoon I received another email from AS. The AS giveth, and the AS taketh. Here he explained that they were just recently given clarification by PGN on the detecto. Apparently it was not the cure all it originally appeared. This quick fix was only for a very minute group. Something about you had to have been born in El Salvador on the 3rd day of February, in the leap year, but before the millenium, and your mother had to be wearing red when you were born....or some such silliness. At any rate, it was fun while it lasted. Imagining that maybe we were approaching the end of this horrible ordeal. Many people have described international adoption as a roller coaster ride from hell. I personally think the description is short of the mark.

Today is Saturday. We are suppose to hear something early next week. Maybe it will be the news we have been waiting's hoping!!!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Thankful Heart

I woke up this morning with a thankful heart. I have been actively trying to appreciate the things I DO have and trying not to focus on the things I don't. After all, we have a lot to be thankful for. Ben is not home, this is true, but...he is healthy and being taken care of by a family that loves him and watches out for his well-being. The rest of my family is healthy and some of us are getting stronger everyday. That's a blessing. I have a roof over my head, a blessing. Our business seems to be thriving, another blessing. What more could a person ask for?

Quite honestly, even though I do thank God everyday for all that he has provided, I still fall short in the gratefulness department. I can't help it. I miss my son. And I know that everyday he is growing and learning. I just want to be a part of his life.

When I get asked about all of the events in Ben's life that we have missed, i.e. his first Christmas, his 1st birthday, 1st teeth, 1st steps, 1st word, on and on. My normal reply is, "Yes, we may have missed the firsts, but once he is home, we will get the rest." I try to believe my own words. But deep down inside, I know, I mourn not being able to celebrate these milestones.

We received news today that our facilitator is staying in Puerto Barrios to try and get some resolve from our case. Either by hopefully speeding up a court date or by convincing PGN to allow us to get the rectification by notarial means. Either way that means we have set still for another week. No movement one way or the other. I have never felt more like a dog chasing his tail than I do today. Round and round we go, exhausting all that energy, but we really never get anywhere.

This all boils down to the fact that we are still, in all reality, at least 3 months from bringing Ben home. That puts us at December. NOrmally I would say that this would be a wonderful time to bring a child into our lives. Right at Christmas, just in time for Santa. How great is that? But, I am a tax accountant. In my mind all I see is the fact that my son will get home just in time for mommy to start working 12 and 13 hours a day, 6 days a week. If he was a little suspicious of me on our last visit, can you imagine how he is going to feel about the person that leaves before he gets up and comes home after he goes to bed? I will get to spend time with him only on Sundays for about two months. This is not working out any where close to the way we had planned. Oh well...the best laid plans and all. I know, I know. I have a lot to be thankful for and I should just stop whining. All it does is use up the oxygen in the air and never benefits anyone. Just humor me for a while. I won't stay on the pity train for long...I promise!

Friday, August 04, 2006


ADD ANOTHER LINK to the chain of professionals working on Ben's case. We found out today that our main team has contracted another attorney in Puertos Barrios to try to get a court date set. According to the main team, Puerto Barrios is about a six hour drive for them and the distance has made it difficult for them to procure a hearing. Oh really? So we have been waiting a little over three months for this, and come to find out you haven't really done anything at all? Bad, bad attorney.

I feel now that by the time we are able to bring Ben home, he will have had a majority of the legal counsels in Guatemala touch his case. I can see it now. On our pick-up trip, at the Guatemala airport, a sea of attorneys hosting a farewll party for Ben.

I was so hoping for some news of progression this week. Oh well, we march on to next week. Hopefully we will hear something then.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

New Pictures!

Little drummer boy

Play boy

My sweet baby boy

Que pasa?

That's the question we found ourselves saying mostly...what's wrong? We just came back from our most recent visit. While it was wonderful seeing Ben, it was also very hard.

HE IS WALKING!!! Yep, he travels anywhere he wants now. He may look like someone's put something in his milk, but he gets there on his own. This part was really fun. Watching him walk all over the place. Of course, this marks the end of being able to control what he can come in contact with, and the beginning of much more vigilence from mama and papa.

His four teeth are solidly in place and we could see a few more starting to make their appearance. If you don't believe us, just let him get one of your body parts to his mouth...OUCH, does he have a bite!!!

This trip we came head on with the visible effects of attachment issues. After Ben's fostermother left our hotel room, and he realized she had left him there, he had nothing more to do with me. He was very clingy to Paul. If Paul left the room, Ben would wail. If Paul put Ben down, he would wail. If Paul turned away, Ben would wail. Get the picture? Paul had to sleep, breathe and eat with Ben attached to his side. Which is what we came there for, to be close to Ben. But, I kinda' wanted to share in some of the bonding also. I felt very much like I was constantly looking thru a window at the two of them. That is, of course, until I came close to them. Then Ben would start to wail, again. I expected to deal with some attachment issues, but when we were faced with them, it was harder then imagined. I so wanted Ben and I to have the bonding experience we had on my last visit. He was so happy and accepted me as his care giver. He looked to me for comfort and would reach out to me. It was just as every mother dreams. Those tiny hands reaching out with that hopeful look of wanting his mother to hold him. How I cherish that feeling .

We were given many theories as to what was going on. Some simple and some more complicated. One, was that he didn't care for the color of my hair. You see, my husband has black hair and brown eyes. I have lighter brown hair and green eyes. I had several native people give this reason. They told me that their own children are very shy around people of fairer appearance. The second theory was that Ben remembers me from my last visit. That was when he bonded so well with me and then I left him. Gave him back to his fostermom. So, the idea is that he didn't trust me to stay. Which, of course, was the truth. I wasn't staying. ( I told you he's smart) The third was one of the more complicated reasons...attachment issues. We were told that since Ben is getting older and he is more able of in depth feelings and thought, these issues would become more valid. The longer he stays in Guatemala, the more he becomes attached to his family there and is more leery of strangers. Which we are to him. Right now I am a stranger to my son, (oooh, that causes pain to say) Actually, the news is not all bad. These issues are a sign of good emotional health. That he has the ability to attach is one of the milestones for a child. Children from orphanages or who have been in the foster care system and experience several different care givers sometimes have difficulty attaching to their forever family. These abilities to bond and trust a mother and family are very basic. They are cultivated early in life. If the ability is not nurtured early on, sometimes it is lost. And then these children find it very difficult to trust those base relationships. This in turn can cause many devastating effects for the rest of their lives. So, as I said earlier, all is not bad. In a way, Ben reacted in a very healthy manner. Even though it was hard for us, we understand it. We, being the adults know how to sort out these complicated feelings. Ben is too young to know how to process these type of raw emotions. The result, he cries. And he did plenty of that. Because he seemed so uncomfortable with me, we decided to give him back to his fostermother 4 days early. This was a hard decision, but best for Ben. We saw it as no need to put him through this trying time and facilitate a bonding experience just to leave him again. We will cross that bridge when it will be most effective, our pick-up trip. So, that means ,we have for now, decided that this was our last visit. I pray that our case gets moving so that we can be resubmitted to PGN. At least then we will have some ray of hope that we are moving in the right direction.

We did get some tidbits of information from the fostermother. She said that according to Palomo's office, (facilitator), the reason we had to go thru the lengthy court process was when they went back to get the original birth certificate from the civil registry, the book it was recorded in was lost. That meant there was no original to correct. Therefore we have to prove that Ben was born and to whom. I know. It sounds sort of silly and clumsy. But, it's the fact and now we have to deal with it. So, we are still waiting for word of the court hearing.

Some processes are more complicated than others. Ours is the same, more complicated than some, but not as difficult as others. I have met people that have been in our shoes for over two years. My prayers go out to them everyday. And I have met others that experienced the "magical" processes. Those that are in and out of the whole mess in break neck speed. God bless them. It gives the rest of us hope that the system does work.