We are currently on day 25 of our LOA wait. I'll briefly recap what this means. 25 days ago we received a PA (pre-approval) from China to adopt Emily. We are now waiting for our LOA (letter of approval) which makes the adoption very official. The LOA wait typically takes anywhere from 2-6 months. We did receive some fabulous news on Wednesday that our dossier (our 1 million page packet telling them who we are) is OOT (out of translation). This is really good news because it's the step within the LOA wait that takes the longest. Once your dossier is OOT, you can expect LOA in about another month. Let me reiterate what I've said in the past... the Lomans will be doing a spastic happy dance when LOA arrives. I'll brief you on future steps as we get there. For now, please pray that our LOA comes quickly. If it does, it's possible we could travel in March, rather than our anticipated April or May timeline! While we wait... more paperwork.
I've begun nesting, as I did with all my pregnancies. Emily's room is coming together and I've even created a baby registry at Target! A precious girlfriend has offered to have a baby shower for me with close friends, in February. It's feeling so real! Also, I've met a missionary who will be traveling back to China in January and she has offered to bring a package back to be delivered for Emily! What a blessing! I plan to include an LSU outfit (can you imagine the cuteness?), a monogrammed dress, medicine, a recordable book, a photo album, and maybe a soft lovie. I may pack myself in the box so I can get my hands on our baby girl!
We did hear some really sad news yesterday. There is a little girl at Harmony House (with Emily), who has been matched with a family and they are fighting their way through the system to get to their daughter, just like we are. The little girl's originating orphanage has requested that Harmony House send her back and they have haulted the adoption indefinitely. How can this happen? Remember, this is a communist country where the state controls everything... EVERYTHING (we can't even send Emily's caretakers money without it going through the government). We don't know why this happens but apparently it's not uncommon. My guess would be that it involves money, as most things do. While you're praying for a quick LOA, can you also pray for this family, the baby girl, and that this scenario does not play out in our adoption? The thought alone makes me sick to my stomach. I just can't imagine the pain this family is experiencing.
Things are progressing nicely. It's exciting to see movement in the process. With Christmas approaching, it's all bitter sweet. There's so much to be thankful for and so many blessings being poured upon us. But Emily is a part of our family now and for her to be so far away is hard. We have her stocking hung and presents waiting for her arrival. We know The Lord will protect her this season, just as he always has. But there's a hole in our hearts, even as we celebrate the most joyous holiday. We know this hole will be filled soon enough. And for that, we are grateful.