3 Days, folks. 3 Days till we leave for Africa and 4 days until we meet our daughters in person. Wow. I thought I would post our itinerary in terms of what we will be doing, so that you could be praying for us specifically each day–if you would be so kind. Without further ado…
Saturday/Sunday (May 4-5th): Travel Days. Leave at mid-day on Saturday from Seattle. Arrive in Ghana in the evening on Sunday. Prayer requests: That we would make our transfer in Amsterdam with all luggage, and that we would have uneventful flights on both l-o-n-g legs of our trip. Also, please pray for David and Jenny and their care-giver, Brooke. We have all confidence in her and in them and in the God who watches over them.
Monday (May 6th): On this day, probably as you’re all waking up, we’ll be meeting our new daughters for the first time. We head first to the orphanage to drop off our donations and visit. Then, we go to the foster home and meet M and C. We’ll also be dropping off a care package to one of the little boys, and taking lots of pictures for parents-in-waiting. Prayer requests: For our hearts to be peaceful, and for a fantastic first meeting with everyone, but especially with our girls. Pray for a smooth transition from the foster home into our care, as we’ll be taking the girls with us, and spending the remainder of our trip with them.
Tuesday/Wednesday (May 7-8th): These days are “hang-out” days, to be spent at our hotel, swimming and getting to know the girls. Water wings? Check. Diving rings and water balls? Check. Sunscreen for Doug and Gretchen? Double check. Thankfully for all of us, there will be another couple and their two new daughters at the hotel, too–all from the same agency and foster home. I think it will be a comfort to both sets of girls to have some familiar faces, and I’m sure it will be comforting to us parents to have another couple walking the same journey. Prayer requests: That our time together would be sweet. That the girls would not be fearful, and that they would be able to sleep. That the awkward moments would be few. And..uh…stamina for Doug and me.
Thursday (May 9th): Court. This is the pinnacle of our trip. Our POA will gather us at 6 am for a 2-3 hour drive to the Cape Coast, with the girls. We’ll then have to wait for our case for legal adoption to be heard. Our case could be heard right away, or we could be waiting all day. While waiting for our case, we’ll be introduced to the girls’ birth mother. At this point, we’ll be allowed to (through our POA) ask for permission to take pictures, and ask questions about the girls, etc. We’ve heard that this is a very emotional experience (duh!) but a good one. It can tend to be awkward, though, the longer the wait for court. Should we pass court, the girls will be legally our daughters. Their visas will be applied for and issued after we receive our court decree. Prayer requests: Pray that we are seen by a judge who is supportive of international adoption, and pray that we have favor upon us with him. Pray for the emotions of all of us, especially the birth mother. Pray that we PASS court, and can leave Ghana with the knowledge that we’ll return very soon to bring home our daughters.
Friday (May 10th): We’ll be spending a little time with the girls, and then they will be picked up and taken back to the foster home. After that, we’ll pack up and head to the airport. We leave late at night on Friday, and return to Seattle by mid-afternoon. Prayer requests: Pray for a sweet good-bye, and traveling mercies back to our home-grown kids. Pray for our stamina, because we’ll need to hit the ground running (D back to Buffalo on Monday).
I can’t thank you enough for your love, support, and encouragement. Love, Gretchen