1. How long will you be in Uganda?
This is hard to answer, but the simple answer is “we don’t know”. We are told to prepare to be gone for about 4-6 weeks. I have heard of other adoptions being completed in-country as quick as 2 weeks, but that is NOT the norm. So we prepare…for 4-6 weeks.
2. Why are you in Uganda so long?
Well, it depends on how in depth you really want me to get into it in answering that.
Simple answer is because we have 2 big hurdles to jump through once we get to Uganda, and we are at the mercy of those two hurdles time limits, they can take as long or as quick as they want. We are at their mercy. The journey isn’t over until we fly HOME to America! So every prayer you can muster up for us will be so so so appreciated. Of this entire journey, these next few weeks are the MOST IMPORTANT.
For the longer answer to this question: First, we have court in Uganda, the 29th of Nov., three days after we arrive in Uganda. The court first has to approve us and grant us legal guardianship, we go to court and are hopefully seen the day we had scheduled, sometimes you just show up and sit all day until they can get to you (with your new child=lots of fun) and sometimes they can get to you and hear your case and other times they ask you to come back tomorrow, and the next day, and so forth. So *hopefully* we will be seen on the 29th, and our Ugandan lawyer presents our case to the judge, and then we are done. The judge decides on a ruling (either yes or no) and it is delivered whenever he is ready to give it, it’s called the “ruling”. So it could be a few days after court that we get the ruling, and it could be two weeks, it just depends. Of course we are hoping for the quickest turnaround possible.
Now, that’s just court. AFTER court, there is the next big hurdle which is getting a visa for Lucas at the Embassy in Uganda so he can leave the country. The embassy has an important job to do, and they do it thoroughly and it takes time. This is where a lot of the time spent waiting comes into play. We submit Lucas’ paperwork & court ruling, and fill out another pile of paperwork and then submit that and wait for a call back for an appointment. Then we come in for the appointment and have a “visa interview”, and they grant you a yes or no. If it is no, and his visa is denied, then we cannot come back to the U.S. I am not going to even think about that, so lets just pray and hope for a positive visa approval and a quick one at that. 🙂 In-between court and the Embassy we have to get a few more “required” things done like a medical form and exam for Lucas~again, test, etc. So we will be busy while we are there, but we could also be waiting around a lot too.
3. Does Roger get to go too?
Fortunately YES he will!!! We are very lucky to have such a great group of guys Roger works with and they are very supportive, and although Roger is in a formal training course (which means absolutely NO time off-unless of emergency) They granted leave for him for one week. We are so so grateful we get to meet our son together for the first time and that Roger gets to experience Uganda and see where Lucas comes from. Since our court date is on the 29th, which falls with the Thanksgiving break the week before he will actually get to be with us for a week and a half almost. We were bummed when our court date got changed (if you look back you will see we originally had our court date at the end of Oct.) but it has really all worked out perfectly!
4. Is Aiden going?
No, Aiden won’t be coming with us to Uganda. We could have brought him with us, but I didn’t feel comfortable with that since we have to take daily anti-malaria medication, as well as other prevention from getting any diseases, parasites, and illnesses. We just didn’t feel safe to bring Aiden. Plus, not to mention the 6 different immunizations Roger and I had to get, we did not want to put Aiden through that either. One day when the boys are older, we will come back to Uganda-for sure. But not now, this is our first time, we are nervous, don’t know what we are in for, we have a lot to accomplish and just need to have some one on one time with Lucas.
My dad will be coming tomorrow actually to pick Aiden up and take him back to Kansas City, my incredibly sweet and kind grandparents drove to my dad’s house from Indiana to watch Aiden during the day while dad goes back to work. This is a fine tuned operation happening in order for this adoption to happen! 🙂 We’re so thankful for all those helping to make this happen for our family, so much!
5. Will you be there alone once Roger leaves?
Fortunately, no, I won’t be. My cousin Wendy will be traveling with Roger and I to Uganda, and she will be staying with me after Roger leaves. Wendy is just incredible, what kind of person would do what she is doing!? Oh sure, if you would like I can go with you, just leave my life, drop everything, for an approx.4-6 weeks since you don’t know how long we will be gone, let me pay for my share, and just be there to love and support you and your family!? Who does that!?!?? Oh, yes, MY COUSIN!!!! She is incredible! This woman has the biggest heart, and is such a blessing to us. We are so grateful she will get to share in this truly a once in a lifetime experience. Lucas will know right off the bat what it means to have a family. We are incredibly blessed to have such an amazing family who would do something like this for us.
6. When will you be home?
Well that goes in part with Q #2, don’t know. Depends on how quickly everything gets done. :/ So we don’t know. I am hoping hoping praying harder that we get home in time for Christmas. It would just break our hearts if we didn’t, but we can’t control Gods time and the timing of any of this, it is what it is, and sometimes things don’t go as planned. We will just play it by ear, and hope for the best. 🙂
7. Is it safe in Uganda?
Yes, it is currently safe for Americans to travel to Uganda, meaning that the U.S. Embassy hasn’t issued any warnings about traveling to Uganda. This could change, and often times it does. There are a lot of different things going on in Uganda that could be unsafe for Americans, but being educated and aware at what is going on is vital. We will be safe, and be ok, we have wonderful people we know in Uganda who are going to take care of us. We aren’t just on our own. 🙂 We’ll be ok!
8. When do you leave?
We leave on Friday!!!!! Can’t believe it is really here, and happening!!! 🙂
9. How is Lucas doing?
If you’ve read my previous posts you’ll know a little about him and his history already, but since he has been with his “foster family” for a few weeks now he is looking great, getting medical treatment, learning a few English words, seen our pictures and knows we are coming (although he doesn’t really understand), and he is putting on weight! They say he is a “chunky monkey”!! A Big boy!! My friend who met him in Uganda said he might just be a little linebacker! haha! He must be a big boy! I’m anxious to see him and love on him!!
10. How’s fundraising going/Did you get all that you needed?
We did a lot of fundraising over the past year and a half, and raised almost everything we needed! We had to take out a loan to supplement the rest of what we needed, but I can tell you if we hadn’t had such generous donations for our adoption there is no way that this would be happening!
That’s all the common questions I can think of that I get asked by everyone, I welcome more if you have them. 🙂