My mind has finally stopped whirling. After weeks of wondering what in the world is going to happen next, we are finally at a stand still.
My body feels like Jell-O and aches. Josh’s back just went out today, and we are spent.
Yet I feel a peace. We are still and we KNOW that He is God! We are right where God wants us. I sure don’t understand what is going on with this system that our country has in place or why we have been held up at every single step of the process, but I do know that we are right where we are supposed to be.
That being said, I know you are dying for details.
I woke up and went to the Embassy first thing in the morning. I sat and only waited for about 30 minutes before being seen. I spent the next 15 minutes trying to debate our case with Freda, the representative at the Embassy. She informed me that, in fact, Washington had officially denied Alethia’s VISA.
The original “problem” with our case is no longer the issue. It was first said that we had a missing document. Well the document is there. So then they said the problem was a discrepancy with dates on some of the documents. But, by the time I made it to the Embassy the issue became clear that Alethia’s birth parents said that they were, in fact, married (which is new information to all involved, BTW. I mean, before we even arrived in Uganda 8 weeks ago we were under the impression that Alethia’s father had passed away from AIDS). That’s it. She doesn’t meet the written regulation of an orphan. It doesn’t matter that the parents relinquished her to the Babies Home when she was 9 months old. It doesn’t matter that her parents are unable and unwilling to take her back in their home to care for her. It doesn’t matter that even if we were to back out now that she would most likely spend the rest of her childhood at the Babies home without a family to care for her until she is released at the age of 18 (believe me, we’ve asked a dozen times if there was ANY scenario where they would be able to bring her back home). NOTHING else matters, except for the regulations at the Embassy. The case is irrelevant. The child’s best interest is irrelevant.
The thing that gets me is that this is a new policy! The Embassy continues to change their rules and regulations for VISAs making it nearly impossible to plan and prepare accurate, credible information that will hold up throughout the entire process.
I left the Embassy and headed directly over to our Attorney’s office, where I spent the next 5 hours waiting. The birth family was brought back in, questioned and then our Attorney and the Attorney General devised a plan. They are trying to prove, from an Embassy approved physician, that the parents do in fact have AIDS and this documentation will go along with another affidavit stating that they have no income, are too sick and CANNOT take care of this child.
I have my doubts that this will affect our situation at all, but at least they are trying.
We are hoping the medical was a success today and that the Attorney and Josh can appear at the Embassy again on Monday and sort through this.
We are in yet another waiting game.
I am leaving my husband and daughter behind tomorrow. I feel absolutely awful, as if I am abandoning them for my own comfort at home. If it weren’t for the complications I have during labor I would totally have this baby here in Kampala, but that just isn’t an option. This feels completely unfair, although I don’t know which is actually better, being able to go home, but having to parent 3 children that have been out of their normal environment for almost 9 weeks, or staying in country with one child, ha!
Anyway, that is where we are. We are finally still, even if it is the only option for now.
We continue to be overwhelmed by your responses, prayers and encouragement! I hate that I can’t reply to every one, but know that I tearfully read each one and am cherishing every word!
On to the next chapter…