There is a restaurant in the main plaza of Tarija, the Gattoparado. It’s well known and well loved here. Pilar and I went in May to celebrate her “Gotcha Day”. We had sat in front of a little fire place and I told her (as I do every year) how we came to be a family. About two weeks ago I took her back to the Gattoparado and told her I had news to share with her. I told her she was going to be a big sister and that I was adopting again. I’ve never seen Pilar without words but she was seriously in shock and it took her a bit to absorb the information. After she had a little time… well she hasn’t been able to stop expressing her excitement.
Adoption has been something that has been on my mind for years. When I knew that we were going to leave Sucre, it wasn’t the right time. Then moving around from Argentina to the States and back to Tarija… well that was chaos. But one of my first thoughts when we decided to move back to Bolivia was that I could adopt again. It’s been an emotional process getting to this point. Doubts, fears, the stress of moving here and the newness of the ministry here… My mind and heart would go towards adopting but then I would find reasons for why that wasn’t a good idea right now and might never be, but the thought wouldn’t let me go.
In the end, God let me know I had to at least take a step in that direction and go talk to a lawyer. I told myself to go into it with hands open and let God decide if He wanted to open the door or close it. I called a friend before going to the courthouse to ask for a number of a lawyer. I called another friend after I got back and had messaged the lawyer asking for information. Their prayers and support have been a huge blessing for me during this time. God opened the door and has given me peace, excitement and hope since I’ve started the process.
Adoption is scary, hopeful, exciting and at times heartbreaking. It's knowing your child is out there and looking for her. It is a gift and a responsibility. It is you on your knees in prayer and having to trust in God. It's arms cuddling and comforting. It's a mirror of the Good News of the Gospel. It's a story of how God redeems and always gives us family. It's acceptance and home. It's stories built and retold. It's deep and faithful love. It's beautiful.
I turned in my first batch of paperwork on Friday. Now I wait for the judge to sign off on it and for Bolivia’s version of CPS to give me appointments for interviews with a psychologist, social worker and a medical review. Once their reports are made, I can turn over the next papers to the judge and will hopefully get on the list. It can take between 3-4 months (legally but not necessarily reality) once I’m on the list to have her. Yes, I’m asking for a girl, probably around 4-5 years old.
We are praying that things do not get delayed (like things tend to do here) and that we can have her home with us before December. That would be a huge blessing since December and January are summer vacation months so neither of the girls will need to be in school and we can have more time to just be at home and with each other.
There is a whole list of things to pray for and I'm asking you to pray. Please be praying for the process, the people in charge, the interviews, the paperwork, for us- the girls and myself, for the transition, for timing, ...
“God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great delight.” Ephesians 1:5