I'm reading all there is to read about the situation with adoptions in Ethiopia right now, from message boards and blogs to what our agency tells us and the updates from other agencies my friends tell me about. It's a lot to try to figure out. There is a lot of controversy about what the response should be from the adoption community. I am starting to form opinions but still am not ready to write about it. I admire those who have managed to be more articulate than I am and write down their thoughts about the situation.
Last night at a meeting, another adoptive mother who just got home with her second child was asking me about what's going on. I had to gulp a few times and look away when talking to her, especially when I realized that if ABC had not happened when it did then we might not have gotten caught up in XYZ, and the chances are good that we could have already had our court date and possibly even our embassy date which would mean that around now, we could be getting Bee introduced to the kindergarten teachers at the local school and settled into her bed with her fairy sheets and string lights to hang above.
But that didn't happen. Worst case scenario: the adoption might never happen. Bad scenario (but at least not the worst): some estimates are that we could be waiting a year for a court date. Better scenario: we get our court date assigned to us tomorrow, and it's two weeks from now.
We feel confident that, knowing what we know about her story and what we trust about our agency, this adoption is an ethical one. As soon as we heard her story, we felt that this should be one of those open-and-shut cases. That's what makes this so difficult. This little bumblebee of a glowing-eyed girl whose hair has grown out so much that she now has little puffs with little bows is now sitting in a foster home with a lot of other kids in the same position. There are worse places she could be. I know this. But I also know that we want her in a family, preferably in our family, with parents to study her and dote on her, extended family to shyly meet her, and a little brother who told me this week when I asked him if he could fly anywhere, where would he want to go, "to Africa, to pick up my sister." This foster home is not a bad place. She has food and is read to and I think watches Cinderella pretty often. She has friends there. She looks happy in the pictures we get. But it's not a family. Who stands over her bed while she's sleeping, amazed and thankful at getting to be her mother?
We got an update about her today from our agency. She had just woken up from a nap. She made her bed. Then, "It was obvious she had done it before because once she was finished, she walked over to a younger girl’s bed and straightened it for her. It seemed natural to her, as though this was just something she did. Then, she obliged me for a new photo." In these photos, she is crazy beautiful, as in "sign this child up for a modeling contract" beautiful, with eyelashes that curl up over her lids making her almond-eyes look like stars.
One day, we're hoping she helps Abe make his bed. He's not good at it now, and could use her patient instruction.