Today my first cousin Neal and his wife Jenni announced on FaceBook that they are adopting a child from Ethiopia. This wasn't news to me - I've known for months, since they started their dossier process - but it was so exciting to see it announced!
Both of them e-mailed me within minutes of each other to tell me that they are #59 on the list. 59?! It took us five months of waiting to get there; we started at 96! I'm guessing that their lower number indicates that for whatever reason, CHI's Ethiopia program has shrunk quite a bit since we jumped on the list eight months ago. Because Neal and Jenni requested a much broader age range than we did, their wait technically should be much shorter than ours has been. I hope for their sake that it is!
I'm hoping that somehow for one of our two trips over there we will overlap with them; it would add such an amazing dimension to our process if part of our travel included spending time with our rapidly-expanding family in the children's homeland. Or if no overlap in physical travel, there will likely be overlap in our referrals - meaning, we'll both know who our children are when either they or we go over to Ethiopia. That will afford us the opportunity to meet each other's child - and more importantly, snuggle, play with, photograph, and videotape them! And we'll also be able to introduce the two children to each other as second cousins, whose first picture will be taken in a transitional home in Addis Ababa and who will have a future of pictures together hopefully in New York, Oklahoma, and many other places, with their new extended family!
So, congratulations to Neal, Jenni, Gabe, Mackenzie, and Isaac! Welcome to "the list!" You are in good company. Now, hurry up and wait!