Unfortunately, there has been a complication in our adoption process. The Ethiopian government (as of yesterday) has mandated that all adoptive families make two trips to Ethiopia in order to complete their adoption. Families will be required to meet the child and appear before the Ethiopian courts to verify that they are willing to accept the child. Apparently, this new regulation has come about because there have been several families that have completed their adoption, traveled to pick up their child(ren), then, refused to accept them once the families arrived in Ethiopia. It is very difficult to undo an Ethiopian adoption, and the children are then considered "abandoned." Therefore, this regulation has been put in place as a protective measure for the children.
Dustin and I have mixed emotions about this new development. We had not wanted to travel twice because not only is that a financial burden, but more importantly we couldn't imagine meeting our daughter and then having to leave her for several months before we could bring her home.
We understand there is nothing that anyone can do to change the circumstances, and that it will happen according to God's plan. However, we can't help but be disappointed and a little frustrated.
On a positive note, the Ethiopian government is still allowing adoptions. They are not closing their programs; so, the children will still be able to go to their forever families, just with additional paperwork and travel. The other good thing is that by meeting our daughter before the adoption is finalized, we will not have to complete a re-adoption in the states; she will be a U.S. citizen immediately when we pick her up on the second trip.
We do not know what will happen with our time-line now. We should have been receiving our court date within the last couple weeks. Maybe we will be meeting our little girl sooner than we anticipated. We will keep you informed when we find out additional information.
Please keep our family in your prayers. Please pray for all the children and the families waiting.