Posted by: Kristin W | June 20, 2011

I’m All Alone and I Can’t Stop Painting

To my blog friends…I think you’ll understand this. To people who have met me in real life (I refrain from calling you my “real” friends so as not to hurt the feelings of bloggers)…I hope you won’t try to stage an intervention after reading this.

Several things have happened on the adoption front lately, that, in theory, seem like good news.  First, my agency is partnering with a new orphanage in one of the Northern Regions of Ethiopia.  Previously they worked mainly in the Southern Regions, where most of the other agencies also work, and which could account for the sluggish referrals of late.  Also, our agency has updated their estimated wait times again.  The wait for siblings changed from 4-15 months to 4-18 months.  Now, depending on how you look at it, that could be good or bad news, but I choose to think that since we are at 16.5 months, that means that they think we will have a referral in the next few months.  These are both optimistic things.

Yet, I have this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach that I can’t describe.  I think it might be hopelessness.  We’ve been at this so long and been near the top of the list for so long.  Also, it seems like all my fellow bloggers are moving on.  Meg will have her kids home soon.  Another friend has gone on hold, meaning that they won’t be given a referral right now while they decide if they want to continue with the adoption process.  Kristen Watkins (the other one – yes weird that there are two of us) has decided to adopt an older child from the waiting child list.  Scott and Kala have decided to adopt domestically and already been matched with a birth mother.   So that pretty much leaves me and one other blogger whose name I don’t even know and I can’t comment on her blog.  (Selam Ubuntu – email me if you read this…)  Now don’t get me wrong, I am VERY happy that things are working out for these people and that they have found a way to grow their families that works for them.  (Except for the one I didn’t mention – my heart breaks for you guys.)  But it leaves me feeling very, very alone.  And, I will admit, it makes me have second thoughts.  What if these people have all made the smart decision and we’re the only idiots left holding on thinking that Ethiopia will work out?  Maybe they all know something I don’t.  Maybe everyone is laughing at me behind my back thinking how silly we are for staying the course.  Maybe…(I could go on and on here, but I’m already sounding a little too paranoid.)

In the meantime, I have been painting.  This weekend, Andrew took the kids to visit his parents and I started by painting the hallway.  And the trim and baseboards in the hallway.  Then the entryway.  Then the hall bathroom.  More trim.  Today at work, I couldn’t stop thinking about doing the trim and baseboards in the kitchen when I got home tonight.  I have decided to do the baseboards in the entire house.  Really, I didn’t realize how bad they were until I painted the ones in the hall – now I am disgusted by the rest of the house.  I think this is all about instant gratification.  I paint.  It looks better.  End of story.  No waiting 16 months.  So this is how I’ve decided to spend the rest of my wait.  It’s cheaper than therapy AND increases the resale value of my house.

Before (the blue wall is the office – ewww…gross!) and After (the kitchen is the tan wall…did those shiny white baseboards tonight):




  1. It will happen! We have note taken our name off the Ethiopia list because we are still so unsure if it will happen. Never in my life before entering the adoption work have I felt so all over the place. I have more gray hairs then I have ever imagined. In the meantime I may starting painting my walls! Thanks for the idea! Hang in there! It is going to happen. If more people keep dropping off the list if may be sooner then later. 😉 Kala

  2. I”m here! 🙂 Waiting 12 months. You are so close and I’m so excited for you! Katy

  3. Hi! I think waiting for Ethiopia WILL work out. The expansion to the Afar region is positive news, and the movement through the courts hasn’t seemed slower than it was before the slowdown. I think you’re going to hear pretty soon now. Maybe your children will be from Afar… then when people ask where they are from, you can launch into an Abbott-and-Costello-esque routine: Where are they from? From Afar. But where? Afar. Where?…

    OK, sorry, it’s 12:30 AM and I’m not painting, but I am ripping up floorboards.

    Hang in there.

  4. You’re not alone!!! We didn’t jump the Ethiopia ship either and we are just at 16.5 months too! I know the feeling of thinking everyone else has moved on or maybe somehow you got erased from the waiting list and they forgot about you:) But it’s close, I just know it. Maybe our children will be from Afar (love the previous comment about the funny routine to follow when we tell people our kids are from Afar) and we will be among the first to travel there. Don’t lose hope, think about your kids waiting for you too 🙂

  5. I would say it is very positive that the sibling wait period was not increased very much. If they thought it would take longer, they would have increased the wait time. I feel for those waiting for babies. The wait time is about three yearly fee increases in my opinion.

    I am now at the point of wondering if my kids will get in the daycare program where I am waitlisted.

  6. You are not alone, but I totally understand the feeling. I’ve been feeling that way lately as well. I was in a bit of a panic a couple of months ago when it seemed like everyone was changing plans except us (although of course I know it wasn’t everyone… but it sure felt that way). I think the changes WHFC is making are good and, in theory, should help get the referrals moving along at some point. Hang in there – you are up there in terms of wait time and it’s got to happen sometime soon. At least that’s what I tell myself (we are at 20 months and our wait range is now 22-28), so we’re finally getting close.

    And re: Kyra’s comment: My husband and I had a fabulous conversation the other day about how fun it would be to tell people our child is from Afar… 🙂

  7. Ditto the Afar comments. That will make for good family fun once your kids are home (and if they are in fact from Afar). It’s funny already. I echo everyone in saying you have to be close and it’s great that you hung in there. Everyone makes decisions based upon what’s right for their family at a given point in time. You guys have explored and researched other options so I hope you can settle and feel good that you are doing what’s best for YOUR family. HANG IN THERE. I cannot wait to hear your good news!

    I wish I had channeled all my Waiting angst into useful household endeavors. Wanna come to Chicago? My baseboards are really disgusting.

  8. I have painted every room in our house save one during our wait, so…yeah…..I get it. The need for change. The instant gratification. Totally get it.

  9. Kristen…you are NOT alone and we are NOT laughing at you and I know much LESS than all of you! But I second what Meg said- everyone is making decisions based on what works for them and feels right. I will say that when we decided to go “older” we were not only considering the sweet little girl that will be ours, but also a set of siblings, we could not have all 3 (yes we asked, I even emailed the Director of WH not Lisa but Deb! begging!) but there was something about this little girl that just pulled at us, we had originally wanted siblings so that could have been the “easy” fix, but it was NOT a fix it was our Little One telling us to come get her!! So knowing all that you have explored and done and what you guys want, you should feel great that the wait is almost over!
    Your baseboards looks awesome and yes now I am looking at mine and thinking ok- no time for that (phew got out of that work!!!). Keep your chin up and I look forward to the day I see the blog and the word referral with your name on or the yahoo group- although I might confuse myself and think I have another one!!!!!!!!

  10. I’m so sorry you are feeling alone, this has been such a roller coaster time for everyone in the Ethiopia program – so much more than the usual adoption roller coaster. I hope you get that magical phone call very, very soon!

    And in the meantime, your baseboards look fantastic…

  11. You certainly aren’t alone! My husband and I are only at about the 8 month mark, but I feel we have to stay with Ethiopia. Anything else just doesn’t feel right and will only result in more waiting. Our conference call yesterday FINALLY gave some encouraging news, and I feel I may get that call before the end of 2011. This is the first glimmer of hope I have had in quite some time. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: