The last adoption update I gave you all was when we received PA. We are now waiting on our LOA. Adoption is all about waiting and you would think I’d be good at it by now. But alas, I am not. Our SW Mallory told us that the time between PA and LOA is the worst for families. Unfortunately I have learned she was right. There is absolutely nothing to do but wait and there’s not one single thing I can do to hurry things along! It. Is. Killing. Me. Even though there have been other periods of waiting during this process, they didn’t seem so bad. At least compared to this anyway. I think maybe it’s because we have seen our sweet EB and all we want is to fly to China and bring her home.
Many of you have asked why we can’t do just that since we know who she is and have received our PA. I also mentioned in my last adoption post that I wasn’t sure what the difference between PA and LOA was. Well, here’s what I can tell you. First, PA stands for provisional approval (or pre-approval). The CCCWA has grated us pre-approval to adopt EB pending a more in-depth review of our dossier. Once that’s complete we’ll receive our LOA which is letter of acceptance. The time frame between those two acronyms is anywhere from 2-3 months. The good news is that many Lifeline families have received LOA recently, many of which were around a month or less. (One of those families being our friends Alison and Stephen!) The frustrating news is of course we haven’t been one of those families. It has not made sense to me why some families receive LOA in 30 some odd days after PA while others (like this family from Nashville) are on day 60 something. I have come to find out this week that basically there’s not much rhyme or reason in the reviewing of dossiers. Mallory told Alison that you are at the mercy of whomever’s (whoever? never could remember that rule) desk your paperwork landed upon. And apparently as more dossiers come through they just get piled on top of each other instead of moving the ones from the bottom to the top…Isn’t that lovely?
Here’s the second thing I can tell you. The reason we can’t go to China and bring EB home right now is because in addition to waiting on our LOA, we also have more paperwork to fill out once we get our notification. We will have to complete more forms for USCIS and visa applications. Obviously we will once again wait for everything to clear in that department and at some point will receive our travel approval and consulate appointment. I will explain more in a future post as I learn exactly how these next steps will go. And on that note, in case you haven’t figured it out, we still don’t know when we are going to China. If we stay on timeline, we could possibly be traveling anywhere from mid-late May or early June. That’s my preference anyway. 🙂 Please note, that’s just a guesstimate. We won’t know our exact dates until ~2 weeks out. But I can guarantee you all will know when we’re going because I’ll be shouting it from the rooftops!
So I ask you all to pray that we receive our LOA soon! Please pray for all the waiting families. Unless you have been through the process of adoption, you can’t understand what it feels like to know your child is thousands of miles away, being taken care of by someone you’ve never laid eyes on and don’t know anything about. I have to remind myself daily that God is in control and He’s taking care of my sweet girl.
Last month Mallory took a vacation during the time all of the government offices in China were closed for CNY. She sent an email to all her families letting us know she’d be out of the office, etc. She closed with a scripture that she often prays for her families and I want to share it with you all. I absolutely love it and am so thankful that I have a SW praying for us.
Do not fear, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east, and gather you from the west. I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’ and to the south, ‘Do not hold them back.’ Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the ends of the earth- everyone who is called by My name, whom I created for My glory, whom I formed and made.”—Isaiah 43:5-7