Thursday, June 22, 2006

Great news today!

The China Center of Adoption Affairs announced it has matched babies with families whose dossiers were logged in through June 28. That means that:

1) They covered more dates than they have in any month since February.

2) I feel good about our chances for a referral in August.

Things can change, of course. Anybody who wants to hear my detailed analysis of statistics and theories is welcome to call or e-mail me . . . but the bottom line is that this is TERRIFIC news. I am getting excited at the thought that we might see our daughter's face in as little as 8 or 9 weeks.

Waiting hopefully,


Thursday, June 15, 2006

Twenty things

Now that our expected 6-to-7-month wait for a referral has doubled, I'm in an unfamiliar position: I've nearly run out of items to check off on my to-do list! So I started a new list of the things I’ve been doing to prepare. I hope you’ll offer some suggestions, too:

1) Carrying the cat around the house in my new baby carrier.

2) Chocolate. Lots and lots of chocolate. Washed down with Diet Coke.

3) Scheduling big events several months out in the hope that it'll cause our referral to come faster. If I pay $130 for theater tickets, I’ll be heading to China by then, right?

4) Taking Lauren to see "Wicked." Two weeks ago.

5) Looking up the lyrics to sappy love songs that I think could be the sound track for our adoption video, and then humming them incessantly (current favorite: "I Knew I Loved You Before I Met You.")

6) Sudoku. I've worked so many puzzles that I ended up winning the $50 first prize in a contest for Tribune employees. (Tomorrow, the world!).

7) Putting pieces of quilt squares in a scrapbook with the beautiful notes you've written our daughter (HINT HINT to some of you).

8) Pondering important life questions such as "why do babies need special wash cloths?"

9) Retail therapy -- No matter what season she comes home, she’ll wear onesies, right? So how could I resist the two that say (in Chinese characters) "I love Daddy," and "I love Mommy?"

10) Stashing reading glasses in key spots around the house so if she needs medication in the middle of the night I'll be able to read the labels.

11) Staring at kids at Target (particularly Asian babies).

12) Editing stories at work and then vowing she'll never go on the internet, she can't get a driver's license until she's 21, and no boys will be allowed within a 10-mile radius of our house.

13) Full-size highchair vs. portable booster seat: Discuss.

14) Organizing a mid-July picnic with the other members of our Sunny Ridge July dossier group (see item #3).

15) E-mailing new friends around the country who understand the following acronyms: DTC, LID, CCAA, TA. Oh, and PITA.

16) Writing thank-you notes for quilt squares on my beautiful red "xie xie" notes (Haven't gotten yours yet? Send in your quilt square!)

17) Buying baby nail clippers that have an attached magnifier (see item #10).

18) Practicing reading out loud the kids' books I have bought -- especially the ones on adoption -- without breaking down (I dare you to get through "Mommy Far, Mommy Near." I haven’t yet).

19) Figuring out how many diapers $50 will buy (see item #6)

20) Taking long baths. Sleeping. Sitting in a spotless, quiet house and realizing it isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Dreaming of baby

I dreamed the other night that the social worker dropped off our baby unexpectedly one evening. It was a Thursday, and I was a little irritated because I didn't know what I was going to do with her on Friday. "Who's going to watch her?" I kept fuming at Lance. "There's no way I can take tomorrow off work with so little notice." When nighttime came, we put her in her crib -- in the garage. The next morning I went to check on her and found the crib had rolled outside the garage (and of course we were at the old family home in Brentwood, where the house was at the top of a very steep hill that the crib was just about to roll down). I was a little disturbed at that, but then I had a great idea: "Why don't we put her crib in our room tonight?" And no, I have no idea why we didn't just put her in the fully prepared room that you've been seeing photos of for four or five months now!

People will interpret your dreams for you in all kinds of ways. It was clear to me that I have anxiety about not being prepared, but Lance said that was because HE hasn't done his part yet and I'm worried about that (I have given him a list of tasks, of course). One of the other women in my travel group says it's very clear that my dream means our referrals will be here soon. Maybe I'm just afraid I won't be prepared to care for an infant -- I've had back pain all week. Or maybe, just maybe, I shouldn't eat dinner so late at night!

Whatever the meaning, I'd just like to say that I AM READY. When we first realized this process was being delayed, I didn't mind too much because it was holiday time and I had a lot of things to keep me busy in the "extra" time. But now the room is fixed up, I have bought many of the supplies I'll need, and I am ready to get on with this! We're at the stage where I've done most of what I can do before we get our referral information and I know how old she is, how big she is, and where and when we'll be traveling. At that point, I'll be in a tizzy again, but for now we wait.

The good news is that our agency is still telling us to expect our referral by the end of July. It doesn't seem to me that that's very likely, given the slow pace the last few months, but I'll go with what they tell me! Meanwhile, I'm trying not to wish the months away. I'm going to try to catch up on my sleep, do some reading, and spend some time alone with my husband (who DOES still have a list of things to do, but most of them also don't need to be done until after referral).

I hope to have news soon, so check back often.

P.S. to Debi: Have a GREAT trip to China next week; you'll know I wish I was there!