Mostly, though, starting a new school year is tough because it coincides almost exactly with the day that, after months of working on our home study, our paperwork landed in Ethiopia.
Two years ago.
It is a reminder that we are farther into this process than we ever thought possible and that we are still SO far away from seeing their faces.
When our dossier landed on September 17, 2012, I thought to myself, "By the end of this school year, we will see our child's face." I just knew it. My mind and my heart never entertained another outcome.
But the school year ended and we were still in the 50s on the waiting list.
In August of 2013, I headed back to the classroom just knowing that this would be the year. It had to be. We were in the low 30s. This was IT.
And then the school year ended, and we had barely moved. And I mean barely. The 2013-2014 school year brought MONTHS of devastating silence. Everything stopped. Maybe even my heart for a little while there.
So last week, I walked back through the door of my classroom, and I felt myself thinking, "Who knows if this is it? Who knows if we will have seen their precious faces by this time next year?"
I sort of feel like we will always be saying, "Oh yeah. We're adopting." Smile.
Even meeting with the insurance rep at school this week brought it up. He asked: "Do you have any children?" It caught me. "No. We are in the process of adopting." That is the third year I have had the same answer.
I would ask, as I have so often, that you pray for us, for me, for my heart. I want so badly to see their faces, to bring them home. But God has us in this season of waiting, and I am trying to wait well. Heaven knows I do not always do that. But I am trying.
And now the courts are closed for the rainy season, so we will likely see no movement until the end of October.
So if you see me, please remind me to breathe. And remind me that God has ordered my steps and the steps of our children.