Saturday, November 05, 2005

And The PaperChase Moves Forward

After all is said and done it’s been a very good week… Ok, it’s been a great week.
(Johnny: Tonight’s post brought to you by a 2002 Corvo via Sicily)

Let’s begin with the Doctor’s letter that I had to have RIGHT this time. You hate to complain; you really, really do because you want to keep up a positive spirit along with a good game face when you’re battling through this paperchase thing. It is a looong road from beginning to end and after reading countless adoption blogs it’s easy to see that the “wait” between the Logged In Date and the Referral Day is the absolute worse. The frustrating days we are experiencing getting our dossier together takes a huge backseat to those languishing in that excruciating time warp. So, here’s to being positive…

THEY GOT THE LETTER RIGHT! Is that shouting? I’m guess it is. What a relief to walk out of the Doctor’s office and to be able to open the car door and casually hand the letter to Aly like it was no big deal. No sweat. Knew it would be right all along. Who was worried? This time they followed the sample provided by CCAI to the letter. Pun intended. It was great, we had lost time with this miscue and you don’t make time up in the paperchase. You can lose time. You don’t gain time.

Next up was the Guardian Letter from M and M. How’s this for timing? If you remember, they had flown in to Miami to catch a Canes football game and then drove 5 hours north to spend a few days with us. They typed the letter up while visiting and presented it to us. What a gift, one more valuable piece of paper now in our possession. We were on a roll. BTW, here’s a shout of Thank You to the two of them. I wouldn’t be surprised if they worried all the way back to Miami wondering just what they had gotten themselves into. M, if you’re reading this – don’t worry, I’m taking my Lizzy pill daily. Honest, really I am.

And then came last night. Friday was a beautiful day in the chronicles of the paperchase for Alyzabeth.

We met for dinner with some dear friends at a new Spanish restaurant we had spied some time back but had never made time to try. This was not one of those knock off chains or bistro fancy places. We’re talking hole in the wall. It looked authentic and our friends, K & P, are the adventurous type and the perfect couple to give things a go. Because of a late business meeting and end of the week planning we were not able to hook up with close friends J & C visiting from Tennessee (when you guys get back down here again you have to stay with us and meet K & P).

Quick restaurant review: Mainly a tapas menu. The food was very good and the service was genuine and friendly. We felt as though we were hidden away in some small outdoor café in Spain. We’re going back. It’s a keeper until others discover it…

So, why was Friday night such a hit, other than the food? We got to meet Lily and her parents, C & M.

The weather was great. One of those hoped for Florida nights where if you’re sitting outside wearing short sleeves you almost need a light jacket. The humidity was nil and the air almost passed for crisp. So, we’re sitting outside enjoying this rarity of weather while most folks are closed up inside when this couple slides in to a table just across from us. Then I started staring. Ok, not staring-staring but it was obvious I had my attention focused on them. The guy looks over and makes eye contact and I had to ask: “What’s her name? She is just too cute.” And that is how we all met Lily. Lily’s mom looked over and smiled and said: “She looks just like us don’t you think”? We all smiled on that one…

This beautiful little girl named Lily who as it turns out had just celebrated her 2nd month as an American citizen captured each of us. The parents could not have been more outgoing and open in sharing their very recent adoption experiences. We ended up exchanging email addresses and we made a promise to contact them with any questions we may have as we continue on our way duplicating their journey. It was awesome. K & P knew exactly what was going through our minds and went out of their way to help us enjoy the evening being captivated by Lily and meeting two people who knew first hand what we were going through and what was ultimately coming our way. You couldn’t wipe the smiles off our faces or Lily’s!

We all finally finished our dinners (Lily’s parent’s were great at explaining what each dish was and which ones we “had to try”) and said are goodbyes. It was past 9 and we still hadn’t been home yet. It had been a long day but we knew that for our faithful canine companion “Salty Dog” it had been an even longer day.

And this is where we got the icing on the cake for what had already been a great week and a fantastic day. In our mailbox was a letter from the US Department of Justice instructing us to call to schedule our FINGERPRINT appointments. Huge. Huge. Huge. We plan to call Monday and get the earliest appointment available so we can get that coveted I-171H form. What a week. A great week. Work was a pain but this was good, very good…

We spent most of this morning sorting out exactly what we still needed to get done. What still needed certified? What still needed authenticated? Were we missing anything? Thank goodness Aly has organization skills. We’re getting closer to a fingers crossed goal of being DTC by the end of December. It’s a stretch but we just may make it… Everything you read recently says the timeline between LID to Referral has grown to 8-9 months putting us in China sometime late fall of 2006. That’s fine. Sooner would be better but at this point we just want to stay in the race. One step at a time. We’ll make it…

This is starting to sound a lot like the “little train that could”….

No comments: