During this season of giving thanks, we are thankful that Bethany Christian Services is willing to take over our home study and that our placing agency, AAC, is willing to work with them also. This transition has not been an easy one. Trying to communicate with two different home study agencies and our placing agency has been hard. There have been a lot of days where we have felt like the middle-man with no control whatsoever over what is happening. Despite the struggles and surprises along the way, we are still thankful to be moving forward.
So where are we in the process? On Wednesday we sent a huge stack of paperwork to Bethany. They do things a little differently than Lutheran Social Services, and they don’t set up their home study visits until you have completed the paperwork. Now that we have completed all of the paperwork (a lot of it the exact same as what we did for LSS) we should be ready to set up our home study visits. We still have not met our new case worker from Bethany, so we are looking forward to meeting them at our fist visit. We are unsure how many visits we will need to do with Bethany, because we were told that some of the visits we already did would transfer over. We are hopeful that some of the additional paperwork, visits, and trainings we have done will all count towards what we need to do for Bethany. Our case worker with LSS told us that she would be sending over our file to Bethany this week, so we think that will help to move things along also.
What’s next? After speaking with our placing agency and Bethany, we are still hoping to be done with our home study by February. This is a few months later than we had originally wanted to finish, but we are thankful it isn’t longer. After we submit our home study to AAC in February, we will apply for I-600 approval. This is basically immigration approval. That can take about 2 months to get approved. As soon as we are approved, we will send our Dossier (home study and all the other paperwork we have been working on) over to Korea so they can match us with a sweet baby. Then we wait! Our hope is to be submitted to Korea by April, Gus will be 2, so we will be more than meeting Korea’s 1 year age gap requirement. We have no idea how long it will take to get matched, but we are hopeful that we will not have to wait long.
During this time of waiting for everything to come together and to finish our home study, we are working on saving every penny we can, reading a lot of books about adoption and Korea, and we are even trying to learn Korean! We really appreciate all of you who are reading this, asking questions, and praying for us along the way. We value all of your support, and we are so grateful to have amazing family and friends standing by us through this process. Even though we are moving slowing, submitting papers last week moved us one step closer to bringing home Baby Stoyk!