So today I hear my five-year-old tell his brother: "Don't tell me what to do!"
This is definitely a kid who likes to blaze his own trail. Should I be worried?
I think maybe I should be worried.
We went to the US Embassy Wednesday to file our I-600 form, declaring our adoptive daughter as a dependent. We were hoping they'd accept it for preapproval, even without the Adoption Decree in hand. No luck. The guy gave us a phone number for an immigration specialist at the embassy, told us to make an appointment if we needed more info.
We needed more info. We retrieved our cell phones (they're not allowed inside), went outdoors, and called the number. The woman asked a ton of questions: what documents did we have, what agency did we use, etc. etc. Finally she tells us to come back inside and she'll meet with us. Long story short, she took our fingerprints and documents and told us she'd get the ball rolling while we wait for the Decree. We were petrified that the immigration end of things could potentially take months, but we learned that after we hand in the Decree the approval could be a matter of a few short weeks. So the day was not wasted.
We attended our second court hearing on Thursday. We were last on the docket and had settled in to wait out all the other cases, but the judge sent us straight to the stenographer, who took the statement of the court social worker. We were home by 10 am. The bad news: they set another hearing date for March 27, where the prosecutor would be given a chance to present any appeals before the decision was handed down. After that, it would take 30 to 90 days for the Decree to be issued. Yikes. Our plans to be home by June 1 flew right out the window.
Luckily our attorney is made of awesome. We paid extra for her to rush her pending submission of the final court documents; paid the stenographer extra to rush the transcripts; paid a courier to hand-deliver all pertinent documents to wherever they're supposed to go, and were able to score a revised court date of March 13. Yet another sign that Someone's looking out for us and/or wants us home. Now if we can get the Decree in 30 days instead of 90, we'll be happy campers.
The hard lesson we've learned in all this is not to take no for an answer. Or rather to ask the question, "What else can we try?" I've been amazed that more often than not, when you push just enough without actually being pushy, you quite often get results. This does not come naturally to me, at all. At least it didn't used to. Not sure yet if this is a skill I'm proud of.
We're nearly there. Praise the Lord, we're nearly there.