Some people will tell you that the only thing that is predictable about international adoption is that it is unpredictable. I’m not sure that I can speak in absolutes like that, but it is pretty close to the truth. Today we got a new piece of news that will make our adoption more expensive and potentially more difficult, but also potentially more awesome. Until today, it was acceptable to have a power of attorney represent you in court in Ethiopia so that families would only have to travel to pick up their children once the adoption was final in Ethiopia. However, due to incidences of parents showing up to pick up their children and declining to take them home (oh, my blood boils at this, it boils), the Ethiopian government is requiring adoptive parents to appear in court. What this means is that we will have to make one trip to appear in court and a second trip to pick Magnolia up once all the other paperwork is in order and we have an embassy appointment.
We have yet to hear whether it will be acceptable for just one of us to show up either for court or the embassy appointment. It is possible that both of us will have to appear for both appointments, and in that case, we will both go to Ethiopia twice. If it is possible for just one of us to show up for either of those appointments, then I (Mary) will travel alone for one of the trips in order to make it more affordable. Regardless, it will be more expensive. BUT. It could also give us the opportunity to spend more time exploring Ethiopia, thus allowing us to better understand our daughter’s home country and culture. I am really excited about this aspect of the change in policy. As it was before, we would have just traveled to pick Magnolia up, and because she would be in our care immediately, we wouldn’t have the opportunity to do a lot of sightseeing or exploring. It is insensitive to parade your adopted child around the country, and because I can’t imagine leaving her in anyone else’s care once she is officially ours, I had accepted that we would see a lot of our daughter but not a lot of her home country. I am thrilled at the prospect of being able to see and do more in Ethiopia. So: AWESOME. Now we just have to see how the financial aspect is worked out. I’m sure it will be. We trust that this is what we were meant to do, and we trust that everything will fall into place.
If you are the praying sort, please pray for our finances. If you’re not the praying sort, just send some good thoughts our way.