Alright, lots, lots, lots to share on the adoption front. We received an update from our case worker yesterday. Here is a quick excerpt from the beginning of the update that gets to the point:
I spoke with Pastor Gideon this morning and He explained to me that the boys' mother only wants financial support to take care of her boys, rather than placing them for adoption. I'm not sure if this was her understanding all along or if she simply changed her mind when reality hit...
I am SO at peace with this. This actually seemed more like an answer to prayer than anything. I had been praying for this mother from the minute we decided to pursue her boys in adoption....just praying hard that she would make the right decision, whatever that may be. I am feeling so relieved for her and I just have an amazing contentment inside of me right now that these boys were not the ones God has in mind for us.
So, what's next? Well, Jake and I are in firm agreement that we need to just stick to adopting a 'true orphan' who's parents are NOT in the picture....i.e. a child in an orphanage setting or in some sort of living situation in which their parents are not involved. We had previously decided this right after the Solomon situation, but ended up straying from that conviction when we were sent the photos and info of these two boys. It just didn't seem right to look them in the eyes and say no because they were living with their mother. In the end, God worked it out. You might remember that we had word of a 4 year old in an orphanage a few hours outside of Accra. But, we did not know the gender of the child. Here is an update on that:
Pastor Gideon indicated he was given the phone number for the orphanage where the (young) child we discussed earlier resides. When he phoned it didn't go through. He is contacting the Dept of Social Welfare once again to check to see if there is an updated phone number. Pastor Gideon reassured me 'he is on the ground in behalf of this adoption", meaning he is trying to locate the orphanage or other legitimate orphans for you.
So, it seems smart to wait it out, and see if this 4 year old is a boy. My only big question, is that if this 4 year old ends up being a boy, I just wonder how on earth we will be able to get paperwork done for him....since transportation is such an issue. The welfare offices are in Accra, but this child is living quite a distance from there. I just can't quite wrap my mind around how all of that is going to work.
Later on yesterday, we received another update from our case worker with another option. When we worked with the Cornerstone of Hope Orphanage gala this summer, we met a lady that I will call Mrs. B who was also helping with the gala. She's originally from Ghana, but lives in Des Moines now. However, her mother and sister still live in Ghana and they take in orphans from the villages and off the streets to provide for their basic needs and education. Mrs. B's family is ready to start helping our case worker coordinate adoptions as they see this as a great way to help these children have a better opportunity. So, this is very exciting because Mrs. B's family lives in a completely different area of Ghana than we have been concentrating in. They have transportation, and boy do they have connections. This was very positive news, and the point is that Mrs. B's family is now also going to be working on our behalf to seek out a boy in the 2-5 yr age range, who's parents are not in the picture. So, P Gideon, is doing what he can, but at least now we have someone else working on our behalf too. Hearing about Mrs. B's family was such a positive way to end the day yesterday.
I really hope that our adoption journey hasn't turned anyone away from adopting. It's definitely had its twists and turns, and to be honest, I really have been questioning if I should have been sharing all the crazy details on this blog or not. Since we are in a pilot program for Ghana it seems safe to say that I am not sure how typical our adoption experience is.....I can only imagine that some go a little smoother and are not quite as soap-opera-ish as ours has been. You just never know what is coming next!