I had a wonderful Christmas season, punctuated with spots of sadness and anxiety. I continue to struggle with relinquishing myself from worry over things I cannot control. I know that worrying about our little girl won't keep her safe, or get her home faster...but sometimes it seems that the emotions are beyond my reach to control. The Christmas season managed to make me feel those spots more acutely than normal. I can only assume that our daughter just spent her second Christmas in an orphanage again. That contrast just seemed so stark each time that I saw my boys enjoying the light and magic of the season. There were a couple times that I saw a bright spot though...one of which was that another adoptive family visited the orphanage and furnished a delicious meal for the whole orphanage. They said that the kids' plates were all clean and they loved it. I also happened to see an article about Glenn Beck partnering with Operation Underground Railroad (amazing organization). While visiting Haiti with them he stopped at Foyer de Sion and brought Christmas gifts for all 121 children at the orphanage. So - he brought our daughter a gift. I don't know her yet, but she is still there...and other people are still caring for her while I can't yet.
By means of another update, I've been toying with the idea of slightly increasing our age parameters for some time now. Some information I've collected over the last couple months (paired with lots of thought and prayer) nudged us to slightly increase our approved home study age parameters. That also means getting an updated USCIS approval letter. We have the updated home study (had to wait for new background checks to come in before it could be done...luckily neither of us have become criminals as of late), and as of yesterday USCIS has received that updated home study along with our update application and processing fee. I was hoping to get the new approval letter in time for Chareyl to take it to Haiti herself next month when she travels there, but it may take a miracle for that to happen. I just may ask for that miracle. We'll see if it's in the cards I suppose.
All I know is that our orphanage has a specific child that they have been attempting to paper ready (that's all they've told us about her), but they didn't know if they would be able to get her papers done before she aged out of our approved parameters. There's no way to know if we will eventually be referred this specific child or not, but we are at least in the process of raising our age parameters slightly so they now will read "0-24 months at time of referral" (and then tack on around a year to that before she'll be able to come home) - so she'll likely be close to 3 when we get her home. Even if this little girl isn't referred to us, this gives a more realistic age range for the orphanage to be able to paper ready a child to be referred to us as it takes around a year to do so from whenever the child comes into their care.
As I already said, I have felt the sting of wanting to know our daughter more acutely over the holidays this year...but I think that was also balanced by the joy I experienced with our boys this time of year too. Now that the holidays are done I find myself pining for her more than normal. It's like I'm experiencing all my emotions more intensely lately...including those January blues.