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Friday, August 27, 2010


Here is the million dollar question....Should I stay or should I go? Now that we are closing in on finding out our travel dates, I am struggling with the decision to make the two trips (leaving Baby N) and returning for the Embassy date, or staying in-country and taking placement after we pass court. I continue to pray every day for the answer. My heart is telling me to stay and try to work something out with my employer, however I am having an issue with leaving my other two children for that long (one is 18 and the other 12) and also my students as it will be mid-semester.
Jim will not be able to stay the entire time with me. He would fly home and fly back to pick us up. Since it is going to be close to the holiday season, I feel that it would be best to have some "alone time" with her to make sure she is feeling safe with her new Mommy (yeah!) before we expose her to the activity of the entire family. I treasured the time I had to bond with both my boys and she deserves the same. I deserve the same. Jim is very nervous about me being alone in Ethiopia and worries because he won't be there if I need anything. I want so badly to soak in the culture and the people of Ethiopia. I am hoping to present my Dean with the possibility of taking nursing students down to volunteer in the government orphanages every other summer. I would also love to visit the School of Nursing at Addis Ababa University.
See my dilemma? If anyone out there in adoption land has any advice please give me some input. If you are planning to stay I would love to connect with you soon (my email is I think Jim would feel much better about the decision if he knew there were other Moms and Dads staying as well. I am anticipating the first trip to be around Oct 19th. Thanks in advance for your input and support.


  1. Hey Laura,

    We are still waiting for our referral, but I've been pondering this same thing since they changed the travel requirements to two trips. My heart tells me to stay in country. I really believe I am meant to be there, immerse myself in the country and be with my son as we wait for our embassy appt. The plan (as of now) is for our family to travel together for the first trip (husband, 12 yo daughter, 10 yo son, 7 yo daughter), for them to extend their stay, head home, and I would stay for the duration. My 12 yo daughter is doing an in depth study of Africa this year, so she may possibly stay with me, too. If not, I'll stay by myself w/ Reisen. I too, feel he deserves that bonding time with me. I talked to our caseworker about this when they first announced the two trips. She said they were strongly advising families make the two trips instead of staying the entire time. Have you talked to your caseworker about this possibility? I wonder if there have been families who have stayed through until their embassy date and how that worked for them? I say if you can swing it, go for it! The time will fly by, everyone at home will manage, and you will have this precious bonding time w/ your daughter in her birth country. It will be beautiful :-)

  2. I'm strongly considering staying too!!!! (no referral yet.... but seriously, it has to be any day now!!!) My husband and 7 year old son will travel for the first trip and then we're thinking they'll fly home (we have a 3 year old daughter who won't go on the 1st trip with us) And then I'll stay and my dad will fly in at the end of the trip to fly me home. It kills me to be away that long from my kids, but our boy will be 4 or 5 and I think it will be a pretty important time to adjust, bond, etc... with each other being jumping into family life! We'll see. Keep us posted on your decision!!

  3. We just got back from Ethiopia with our two sons. We were one of the first two trip families, and we opted to make the two trips. I came home partly for practical reasons (I had 2 baby showers and a nursery to prepare during our three weeks home between trips), and partly because we were adopting two kids, and I knew my husband would have to come back to work, and I didn't feel confident that I could handle being a "single parent" to two kids in a country that I didn't know much about. In the end, I feel good about our decision to make the two trips, as it was the best one for our family.

    When we went back for our second trip, we met a woman who had stayed in country the whole time. She had to wait six weeks total, and she said it was really hard and she was really ready to go home. It's hard because you can't leave your guest house with your baby, so it's easy to get cabin fever.

    If you want to talk more about it, leave me your contact info on my blog, and I'll get in touch with you!

    All the best,