We received a very official-looking (well, not just official-looking...I mean, it is an official notice from the Department of Homeland Security) document in the mail just now. I was excited to see it, knowing full well it wasn't anything super important. Even though it does say "THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" across the top in dollar bill font.
Surely you're thinking what I'm thinking: How can I obtain access to this dollar bill font for my own personal use?
So what is it? Just a notice that the D. of H.S. has received our I-800A, a.k.a Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country. Now that they've received it, we wait for another notice by mail of our fingerprinting appointment. This could take several weeks, I think. Then we get fingerprinted at our local immigration office so USCIS can continue processing our application. Several weeks after that, we will receive notice that our application has been approved. Then we add this notice to our dossier. This is actually the very last document we need for the dossier...so there IS an end in sight, despite all evidence to the contrary.
Hence the title of this post. There are days when this adoption feels quite real. Like, this is happening. Like, we are going to China NEXT SUMMER. Like, nine-ish months from now.
But most days it feels completely surreal. Many of you have asked how the adoption is going. (Thank you for asking!) And I say it's going just fine! (Which it is.) But I know it can't seem real to you, either. This is the stage at which we're still mired in paperwork, the bulk of which is behind us, thankfully, and we inch steadily closer to the monumental milestone of sending our dossier to China. It's possible we could have our dossier in China by late November...almost certainly by Christmas.
And then? We wait for a phone call from our agency, telling us they have a file for us to look at. A file containing information and photos of a little boy who just may be our son.
And when we say "yes"? This will all seem very. incredibly. REAL.