So many kind people ask us that question. Almost daily, someone wants to know when we will be bringing the newest member of our family home. And my answer, unfortunately, is always the same: "We really have no idea, but we do know it will be a very long wait."
Referrals are being sent out from the China Center for Adoption Affairs (CCAA) very slowly these days. About every month they finish the processing of about two weeks' worth of received dossiers. Right now, the wait for a referral is about 16 months, but if CCAA continues at its current rate, the wait will reach about 24 months. Our dossier was logged in at CCAA on August 14, 2006. You do the math...
Of course, we have plenty to keep us busy right here at home. Our three girls here keep us hopping. I can only imagine how agonizing the wait must be for first-time parents (oh, wait, I DO remember the agonizing wait for our first daughter - it was dreadful, and it only lasted about 7 months!). But in our hearts - in all our hearts, not just mine and Al's but our girls', too - we are a family of six. There are four girls in our family, and the littlest one's name is Sarah. We talk about her, plan for her, make home arrangements and furniture purchases with her in mind. Rachel knows that she is going to be Sarah's "buddy" (more on that in another post), and Abbie knows that she is going to be Sarah's "roomie". She is a definite presence in our family.
And so we wait. Sometimes the days just slip by and I realize that it's been one more month since our dossier went to China - one month closer to our Sarah. And other days, the wait for her is all I can think about, and I have to make a conscious effort to focus on the three beautiful girls who are at home with me right now and to try not to worry about the child I'm waiting for, missing.
So, thank you, everyone, for your interest and concern and enthusiasm for our upcoming adoption. And I really look forward to the day when I can provide a more optimistic answer than, "We really have no idea, but we do know it will be a very long wait."