All Your Uganda Adoption Questions Answered

Well, not really, but these are the questions that I get most frequently:)

Go check it out and leave a comment over there if you have any other questions you think would be good to add to the list or revisions to any of the answers:)  This is by no means meant to be exhaustive, but rather a place people can go to get general information based on what we have seen from our own experience and others around us.

***All information is based on our personal experience and opinions.***

FAQ’s

We have been bombarded (in a good way) with inquiries about the Uganda process, traveling with little ones, money, places to stay, and so many more questions, that we thought we would do a post on our blog for everyone to be directed to.

I need your help, though.

I have been getting at least 1-2 emails a week with questions and cannot keep up with them all…

Let me know of some questions that you think would be helpful to include for families beginning the process to families just returning home!

If you have adopted, what are some questions you had that you needed answered or things you wish you would have known.

If you’ve not yet adopted, what are some questions that have come up that you need answers for?

Ready…GO!

Remembrance And Acknowledgements

Wow, has it really been three weeks since Alethia and Josh stepped off that airplane?!

I’ve been asked what we are going to do with Alethia’s blog since our overseas process has been completed and she is now home with us.  It seems kind of sad to just stop writing altogether, but I want her story to begin to merge with the rest of our family.  She isn’t living her own story anymore!  She is a Via:)

Josh and I plan on making a blog book of this journey for her, kind of like a baby book since we have one of those for each of our other children.  I would also love to put an update of her on here during special occasions like birthdays, but we’ll just have to see how it goes.

But in the mean time…

I have written and re-written this post a half-dozen times and can’t seem to put into words exactly what I want to express to you.

We basically just want to say thank you.  We just can’t say it enough!

Thank you for caring about our family.  For loving us in the most practical ways.  Many of you sacrificed greatly for us to be able to bring Alethia home.  You sacrificed your time, helping us pull off 3 yard sales, fundraising parties and watching our kids to run around getting piles of paperwork complete.  You sacrificed your finances (some of you over and over again), donating to our adoption.  And those are all things that happened before we even left for Uganda.

Then, you followed us to Uganda.  You couldn’t be there with us but you read our story.  You prayed for us.  You shared our burdens.  You cried with us.  You laughed with us.  You remembered us when we were gone for so long.  You shared our story with your friends and family to help speed our process along, gaining more prayer warriors along the way.  You contacted congressmen, senators, and countless other avenues and resources that we just didn’t have at our own fingertips to help bring our little girl home.  You have supported us in every area and in every way.  You cleaned my house before I flew in with the kids, you offered to watch the kids so I could catch my breathe while Josh was still in Uganda with Alethia.  You stocked our refrigerator and got groceries for us.  You knocked money off of our rent and made yourselves available in so many other ways, offering your friendship and encouragement at the drop of a hat.

I keep thinking of the letters that Paul wrote to the churches that he started, as he continuously thanked God for their perseverance and dedication to God and for their on-going support of him.  That is how we feel and how we want to express our gratitude to you and God.  The Lord placed each one of you in our lives for that time and orchestrated the events to unfold in his perfect plan, using all of us to paint a beautiful picture of what Christ’s church should look like and be.

So, from the bottom of our hearts:

“I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now.  And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.  It is right for me to feel this way about you all, because I hold you in my heart, for you are all partakers with me of grace…”

Philippians 1:3-7

 

The Homecoming Part 4 – The Walk Into Forever

…I simply couldn’t get enough of Alethia and her siblings were feeling the same.
 It didn’t take her too long to get reacquainted with her sister.
 Areyna had been waiting for this day for a long time. She’s wanted a sister for as long as I can remember:)
 Still, it was all I could do to keep my hands from touching her growing hair and beautiful skin…
 …I just couldn’t believe that this day was actually here!
 It was so sweet to see Cai and Zeke stand so close and love on her too.
 When Josh and his brother caught eyes it was such a sweet moment, as they are waiting to bring their sweet Chloe Laiti home next. I’m sure they had so many mixed emotions that day as well!
 While we occupied our time to make our final exit Areyna and Alethia began picking up fun games they had played during our time in Uganda.
 We got our first family photo on American soil together. (Don’t laugh at my kid’s clothes.  At least we made it to the airport in regular clothes and not the costumes that were causing the tears before we left the house, ha!)
 I think Alethia was beginning to realize that she was FINALLY HOME!

 It was finally time to leave.

…as a family of six, making our exit into forever!
 We know that we are very fortunate to have gotten our happy ending, but we pray that we would be giving God the glory no matter what His outcome would have been, because he continues to give us “strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow”.

To God Be The Glory!

The Homecoming Part 3 – The Introduction

Now it was time to introduce her to the world!
Alethia was wide-eyed at the crowd. I took my cues from her. As she began to get more comfortable in my arms I decided it was time to make her first introductions:)
 She had only spoken to her Nonnie (my mom) on the phone from Uganda one time, but now they got to meet face-to-face!
 My parents sat back and just smiled most of the time. They had waited a LONG time for this day too:)
 I honestly can’t even remember all that took place that day. It’s kind of like the blur of your wedding day. You KNOW it was wonderful! You KNOW you were surrounded by loving friends and family, but you can’t for the life of you remember all the details out of the one being focused on.
 We made our way to the floor so all the littles surrounding us could meet her.
 We even had visitors from friends we met in Kampala who were adopting as well. This little girl’s name is Esther and they played SO well together at the guesthouse.
 After so many new faces she finally spotted a familiar one! She saw her Meme that came to play with her while we were in the midst of our process in Uganda.
 It didn’t take her long to feel brave enough, with her big sister’s protection and leading, to go with Areyna to meet her new cousins!
 They immediately created a bond that I am more than excited about watching grow over the years:)
 It was so sweet to see friends we hadn’t seen in so long come out to support us!
 What a wonderful day it was!
 I simply couldn’t get enough of Alethia and her siblings were feeling the same…

***More To Come***

The Homecoming Part 2 – Reunited

…and then I saw them…
I could no longer wait to race toward them!
Neither Josh nor I could hold back the tears of joy when we locked eyes.
Up until this point Alethia hadn’t seen me yet, as the gathered crowd had her full attention. I had prepared myself for all sorts of scenarios for her reaction, trying to be realistic yet hoping for the embrace I’d been waiting for, knowing she hadn’t seen me in over a month.  I gently called her name and told her, “Mommy is here, baby!”
As soon as she saw me…

…she collapsed into my arms and held on tight, as if she was afraid I would disappear from her again.

She was here…and she remembered!!!!!

By that time our other kids were running around the corner to meet us, shouting “Daddy” and “Alethia”!

It was all I could do to hold my ground.  It was just so surreal!  Having my whole family all together was way more joyous that I had ever imagined.

I couldn’t stop kissing her as I slowly realized that my grip on her was just as tight as hers was on me:)

She was here.  I could breathe again…

Now it was time to introduce her to the world:)  This was the little one they had been praying so hard for.  God had given us our miracle!

***More To Come***

The Homecoming Part 1 – The Anticipation

By the time the kids and I arrived at the airport last Wednesday my stomach was full of butterflies.
 The whole meeting area was full of others with the same built up anticipation as we had! My mom and Josh’s mom were just as giddy.  I’m so glad they could both share this day with our family.
 I met people whom I had never even met before who have been keeping up with our story and praying with us every step of the way. But for some reason I couldn’t keep my eyes off the monitor that showed the newest arrivals coming up the escalator.
 Apparently I wasn’t the only one glued to the monitors:)
 While we continued to wait more and more people trickled in to support our sweet family’s reunion. Again, many of the people coming to support us were sweet strangers who we had never met face-to-face. This was one of the most humbling days of my life!
 We all continued to wait and wait…
 …until I couldn’t wait any more.
 I went to the front of the security signs and took my post, as if I’d have a better angle to see them from there, ha!

 But all of a sudden I heard murmuring as everyone began focusing their cameras toward the escalators. Josh and Alethia were coming!
 And then I saw them…

***All photos by Kelly Via Photography***

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