Our Adoption Timeline

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Here’s our adoption timeline thus far for those who are interested in seeing what’s involved and how long it can take…I will be continually updating this and the post will stay as a link under the “Two Plus One” category header…

  • 2015
    • May – Met with a couple who’d adopted from Ethiopia 3X through AA, an agency based here in Portland, and highly recommended them, along with some tips to remain sane. Met with AA, submitted application and paid application fee.
    • June – Completed online adoption education courses. Mailed both dossiers with first payment to AA – one for USCIS I-600A, other for Ethiopian embassy. Paperwork included proof of current financial, employment and housing status, 6 letters of recommendation from non-family members and fingerprints (2 of the 3 we had to do in the process – these were for DHS and for OSP).
    • July – Home Study – Part I (visit to house). Home Study – Part II (interviews at agency office). Home Study draft received, edits made and sent to AA for approval/signature. Home Study signed copies received and mailed with I-600A to USCIS for approval.
    • August – HS/I-600A packet returned because the last 2 (blank!) pages need to be included, printed & mailed to USCIS same day. Received USCIS confirmation of receipt. Received USCIS fingerprint appointment notification.
    • September – Completed fingerprinting at USCIS office downtown. Received request from USCIS for more documentation and because of that, an updated Home Study. Submitted required documentation to AA.
    • October – Agency updated HS & delivered to us. Mailed updated packet to USCIS.
    • November – I-600A approval letter received! Appointment at AA to have Ethiopia dossier notarized. Rented a car and drove to state capitol in Salem to have the dossier certified, then mailed checks and packet to AA. AA confirmed receipt and that packets have been mailed to embassy in Washington, DC, who would review then forward to the Ethiopian Embassy in Addis Ababa.
    • December – Dossier arrived in Ethiopia for translation and processing.
  • 2016
    • January – Dossier translation complete in Addis Ababa, now awaiting referral. This is the longest part of the process and due to turmoil inside the country and government reorganization of MOWA services, wait is expected to be longer until things settle down. Hoping for a referral x 2017.
    • May – AA advised new MOWA staff in place in Addis.
    • June – AA advised MOWA reps are in the USA visiting this month. Began renewal process of Home Study for 2016 with updated financial, medical, and background check data. They informed us that it’d probably be 2 -4 years til we got a referral, and were advised wait times post-referral are currently 14-18 months (which means we’d be bringing home a child up to age 6 instead of 0-4. We are sticking with Ethiopia, where our heart is  and because changing programs would mean near-doubling the fee.
    • July – AA sent us draft Home Study Update for approval. Made changes and emailed back to AA for signature/notary.
    • September – I-600A renewed by USCIS through 2018.
    • October – Fingerprints renewed through December 2017. Found out Ethiopia is  in a 6 month State of Emergency – no one beyond staff allowed in orphanages.
    • November – Attended informational meeting about domestic adoption in case international program closes.
    • December – Noticed online that AA is promoting India adoption again and while they tried to influence us to change from Ethiopia to India in the summer, they posted on their page this week that to get a baby from there, a couple’s combined age needs to be <50 which we are not. Concerned about this, although agency says we’re fine.
  • 2017
    • January – No updates from anyone besides that the agency’s guest house for adopting families to stay in has now been closed, so now if this ever happens we’d have to pay for hotel while we’re there as well.
    • February – No updates from international. Attending 2-day domestic adoption training to learn more. What a shitshow – open adoption agency contractually requires regular visitation with birth parent(s) after the adoption, and were treated like hell after an emergency medical situation and not allowed to make up the final 4 hours of training. Withdrew from that process and no longer looking at domestic adoption unless international program we’re in closes. International agency is still processing referrals, albeit slowly.

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  One thought on “Our Adoption Timeline

  1. January 7, 2016 at 6:39 pm

    Everything seems to take forever!

    Like

  2. January 7, 2016 at 10:57 pm

    Yikes what a slog! Well done for getting through it, hopefully the next part won’t take as long as you think.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 8, 2016 at 3:27 pm

      Yeah you know it’s funny, I keep thinking we’re going to get our little girl faster than they say. But that could just be because Jennifer Lopez’s character did in “What to Expect…” LOL…

      Like

  3. Pleasepullupachair
    February 15, 2016 at 9:39 am

    I love this timeline, I am going to have to copy this for our adoption process, it is such a great way to look back and to share with others!

    Liked by 1 person

    • February 15, 2016 at 9:40 am

      Thanks! In my Two Plus One I have adoption tags on the blogs that talk more in detail about this part of our family-building process if you’re curious. The most notes are early on in Spring and Summer 2015 🙂 thanks for stopping by!!

      Like

  4. May 29, 2016 at 8:20 pm

    This is a wonderful idea doing an adoption timeline gives others a really good insight to the process!!! Wish I could find something like this from an Aussie couple: adoption from Australia seems soooo difficult 😦 good luck!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • May 29, 2016 at 9:45 pm

      Thanks!! It’s so much longer of a wait to adopt internationally from the US than it used to be because they take more precautions while having less staff to do it…but it’s still faster than Australia…why in the world do our countries make it so hard when there are SO many kids out there who need homes…good luck to you as well!!

      Liked by 1 person

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