Big news arrived in the mail yesterday – I guess it was an extra-special Halloween treat!
[Please forgive the poor quality of the photo. Also, I blocked out our identifying information as I didn’t need it out there for the entire world to see.]
It’s our I-797C from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which states, in pertinent part:
“It has been determined that you are able to furnish proper care to an orphan…”
So, this means that we are officially done with the initial paperwork-heavy phase of our adoption (well, until these things start to expire, but I refuse to go there today), and we are now officially waiting for a baby from Ethiopia! It’s a strange feeling to be excited about getting put on a wait list, but it’s how it is. Our work is essentially done, and now we kick back and relax (ha!) and wait for a baby to be referred to us.
WHFC’s present wait range for a baby under 12 months (either gender) is 12-18 months. Parents receiving referrals right now have been waiting about 16 months. I am going to choose to plan on the long end of that range because I’m tired of disappointments and I’d rather be pleasantly surprised if it happens earlier instead of planning on the early end and being disappointed if it takes longer. So, if we look at 18 months from now, we’re looking at spring 2011 for a referral. And then travel 2-6 months after that.
The arrival of the I-797C was a pleasant surprise. We honestly didn’t think we would get it until close to the end of the year, because I’ve been talking with another prospective adoptive mom in Baltimore who, along with her husband, has been awaiting their I-797C, and we both assumed their paperwork would come first since their home study got to USCIS almost two months ahead of ours. But our application date was slightly earlier, so maybe that was why ours came through first. Who knows with this stuff that’s so out of our control? Anyway, when I opened up the mail and saw this, I was excited, but my excitement was a bit tempered and one of my first thoughts was, “But what about Zoe?” Here’s hoping the mailman brings you something very good, very soon, Zoe.
So, without further delay, here is my official thought on reaching this milestone in our adoption process:
and I’ll throw in a W00t! for Craig, too!