Our Adoption Application Approved! Moving Forward in a Pandemic
Today I am sharing great news for our family: the Indian authority, called CARA, has approved our application to adopt. Of course, we are relieved and hopeful that we may yet be able to bring kids home from India, but I am also excited to share this news with you because it offers evidence that international adoption from India is remaining open during this tumultuous time.
Since the pandemic struck, I have been writing about the process of waiting and my hopes for a more peaceful world; now at last, I can resume my original purpose for this blog: to provide other prospective adoptive parents with our story, especially information that can be helpful while navigating the long, arduous process of international adoption.
Every country has a somewhat different process, and India is unique in that it does not allow prospective adoptive parents to view the online Waiting Child List until after their applications are approved. Honestly, the wait was quite difficult. Getting vetted to become an adoptive parent is anything but easy, and it is that much harder when you do not have any faces of children to keep you inspired.
However, it was a wonderful relief to see their faces after having endured 8 months of screening followed by 5 months of waiting for news. When we began scrolling down the list of children, it was as if our dream suddenly became real again. There they were. So many young people needing homes. I cannot provide any details on specific children, as CARA prohibits this for their protection, but I can keep you informed on how the process works from this point.
We have just one minor obstacle (ha ha) … the pandemic. India’s case numbers have skyrocketed since mid-July. As of today, they have over 3.4 million cases and 62,000 deaths, and the daily totals are consistently high.
My husband and I believe that we will not be able to travel until there is a vaccine. We plan to continue looking at the waiting child list about once a week but without rushing. My husband is from a northeastern city in India called Shillong, and we will look particularly for kids from that city, especially since there is no hurry.
In the meantime, I plan to convert my business into one that will work better with kids in the home, and I will update you all on this process as well.
For twelve years now, I have had my own business teaching international professionals advanced English language skills, mainly pronunciation, aka accent reduction.
I am currently hiring social media marketers to help me sell an English Course Package that I created over the years. I am especially looking for people who are good at chatting with prospective buyers and answering their questions. I would love your support! You can help us financially with our adoption dream by simply promoting this job opportunity to anyone you know that may be interested. Or pass along this link to the English course deal. I would really appreciate your support with just a few shares on any social media platform that you use.
Ongoing Protests in Seattle
I have recently written about the social unrest in Seattle, and I will continue providing some information on this as well. I moved to Seattle twenty years ago and fell in love with this city. Unfortunately, people have become very divided due to the CHOP zone that was created and the ongoing nightly protests. Recently, I was glad to see that the media gave a long interview to a police officer, and it is compelling. I feel that too many young people getting swept up in this cause are no longer seeing officers as human beings with families.
There are black lives matter signs here and there in the neighborhoods, and what confuses most of us is knowing what they mean at this time. There were definitely peaceful protesters at the very beginning, but these days groups of 50 or more people are roaming our downtown streets every night looting, throwing fireworks, and attacking precincts. Our city council has started the process of defunding the police despite the fact that the majority are not in favor of this, particularly without a well-designed plan and with the increased violence in our city. Police Chief Best, our first African American female police chief, was opposed to defunding, but strongly in favor of reform. She resigned out of frustration. Our mayor, who has been complicit with the radical protesters, is in the process of being recalled (we hope). Our governor pretends he does not know what is happening. Meanwhile, our downtown cannot reopen because few people are willing to work there after dark, and of course, fewer still would go there for a leisurely activity, such as visiting our once famous Pike Place Market.
I put up this peace sign in my yard, and I have started encouraging others to do the same via social media. I encourage anyone reading this who also lives in a troubled city to post this sign or something similar. It is only $20 including a simple wire frame post that costs $2.09.
I am advocating this approach because I believe the radical element is doing its best to divide people. When we see a black lives matter sign, and we do not know whether that household is involved in the nightly unrest, we wonder if we can trust that neighbor. It is surprising to me that few people in my neighborhood have taken them down, and frighteningly, that seems to speak for itself. And yet it may not. One thing is certain, though. If we start putting up “blue lives matter” or “all lives matter” signs, we will become more divided within our communities.
If we choose to rally under a third idea, reclaiming the true definition of peace, perhaps we can pull together as communities once more. I use the word reclaim because I have been troubled by the media’s distortion of what peace means, especially coupling peaceful protests with carrying weapons—as if the carrying of weapons becomes a peaceful act if it is related to combating racism. Worse still, many media outlets are willing to defend any lawless act if they can claim it is a protest against injustice. This is the eye-for-an-eye mentality which leads to blindness.
I believe protests can be both effective and peaceful.
I want this generation to believe that is true.
Sadly, my city is such a mess that when I have posted my peace sign on social media, I have felt afraid. But for that very reason, I will persevere. I want this city to be beautiful again, and for that to happen, the first step is healing. I am sure that some will think my idea ridiculous because people have become so jaded. And that is just one more proof that we all need to start reclaiming peace.
If we come together under the banner of peace, we can shame all actions that are not genuinely peaceful, we can teach this generation what peace really is, and we can re-learn how to respect our differences of opinion.
Erica Rosi Tham