We are two months into this journey and we’re making progress. Some days the mountain of paperwork is overwhelming, and other days I feel like I’m almost at the top. Yesterday we made considerable progress- mostly because of one document I feared we would have to put up a fight for.
Back in January I stopped by city hall to ask a few questions. Having just received our packet, I was just looking for answers. Who do we talk to for this form? Where do we go for this information? But from the moment I walked in, I felt like everyone I talked to wanted to pawn me off to someone else. “No, that’s not something we do.” “Hmm, I think that’s a county issue.” “No, I’ve never heard of that request before?” The only question going through my head that day was, “Why do you work here if you don’t want to do your JOB?” I left discouraged and felt like I hit a wall (figuratively) in this process. “How are you going to respond?”, was what I felt God asking me as I drove away (angrily). This likely won’t be the first wall, I assured myself.
Since then, I wasn’t looking forward to that part of the paperwork. When I told Filipe about the ordeal, I told him he could “deal” with it. I tried. But as I was prepping the paperwork Thursday night for Friday, I felt like this was something we could and should work on. So, I added “city hall” to the list of places to go- along with getting fingerprints and notary signatures.
Within minutes of arriving at city hall, I was pleasantly surprised. Every person I talked to helped us- Filipe was with me, but I did most of the talking. In fact, the first woman I encountered responded with “We don’t normally do this, but I’ll do this for you”. (I’ve never had that response. Filipe gets it all the time. Me? never) . I couldn’t believe my ears.
Then, we had to go across the hall and ask for proof of residency (the same office I had the bad encounter before). I walked in nervously and was greeted warmly by a girl who directed me to the right office. Then, get this, the guy (the one with the power and ability to grant us the document we were asking for) smiled, looked over our paperwork, and quickly got to work. Some people in the government offices are actually pleasant and do their job. We enjoyed a nice little conversation with him- found out he’s from Portugal. He told us he never heard of anyone adopting.
Back in the car I told Filipe how weird that whole thing was. We didn’t encounter any one of the same people who couldn’t help me last time. I felt like my last encounter didn’t even happen it was so completely opposite from my prior experience. And we still got what we needed by the right person. I felt like the whole thing was a joke. We were out of there in about thirty minutes and got everything else done as planned.
Lesson learned: Don’t give up too easily. Don’t be afraid to try again. It could turn out completely different.
What We’ve done:
In the last month I have:
- Completed the (Hague Convention) required adoption seminar (Filipe is “working” on it).
- Applied for our kid’s passports (yes, they’re traveling with us)
- Read half of the book, The Connected Child.
- Completed our 2012 taxes.
- Had our first social worker visit. (He was great and will complete our homestudy next weekend and finalize it the week following). Hopefully by this time next week I can cross of
- Proof of Residency (yay!)
- Completed all necessary misc forms that require a notary signature (like financial statement).
- Passports for our 3 kids- $363
- Livescan- $178
- Notary- $30
Total this month $571
Total to date $6197
What You’ve Done:
You are incredible. Our first fundraiser (in honor of Filipe’s birthday) brought in over $5000. To date we have raised over $10,000 which will help tremendously with the upcoming $5k+ that is near due. Not only have you given of your own money, but many of you have offered to help by fundraising for us. Thank you, Thank you.
A new fundraiser started yesterday and will go through March 10th. If you ladies (or any of you guys who love a lady) love Thirty-One, then this is just for you. My dear friend, Emilee (and a mama to five!), is a Thirty-One consultant. She is donating her profits toward our adoption. Interested?!?! Click on over and take a look: https://
How You Can Pray:
I have one goal- to complete all of our paperwork within the next month. Please pray with us in:
- Completion of our homestudy.
- Quick submission of our USCIS forms (the government has to approve us “fit” to adopt) and response.
- Receive remaining documents for our dossier (aside from USCIS form, I need two more)
- That God would already begin preparing the Brazilian agency/authorities in receiving our paperwork and in responding to it.