Wednesday, May 28, 2008

118 days

I know.....3 posts in one day.  WTH?  But, I gotta get this out!

Are you freaking kidding me?  I have been waiting 118 days for an approval that CIS reports takes an average of 40 days.  Um....guys, where's mine?  People are constantly asking if I've heard anything and how I'm doing.  My new answer is, "I'm angry."  I'm not just sad anymore.  I'm pissed off.  This is not OK.  CIS should be going to the hospital everyday (if they have to) to resolve this situation.  New petitions should be set aside and cases over 100 days should be a priority.  They should be ashamed of themselves for letting this go on so long.  Clearly, whoever is in charge is not doing their job!  Why aren't my senators angry about this?  What do I have to do to get some help? 

look what arrived today!

birdy painting

One of my absolute favorite blogs is Secret Agent Josephine.  She has the cutest daughter and is a very talented artist and graphic designer.  Her posts frequently make me laugh out loud.  She has an etsy shop and last year I bought these alphabet cards from her and at Christmas time I bought these gift tags.  Then one day she posted a picture of her daughter standing on the bookcase in her room (it was one of those days), with this darling picture of birds in a nest on the wall behind her.  I was in love.  I asked where she got it and found out that of course, she had painted it.  Since then she has painted some tiny versions of the bird painting but they always sold before I could even view them on etsy.  Well, not this time.  I got my very own painting for Sadie's room.  The colors don't match her room at all but I had to have this.  I can't wait to find a spot for it!!!  Oh....and how sweet that on the back of the painting she wrote "Especially for G and her little one."  Thanks SAJ!

how i spent my daughter's first birthday

Well, I made it through one of the hardest days of my life so far.  I think what saved me is that I was busy and distracted.  It was when I was alone that I let the sadness get me.  I woke up feeling very sad but I couldn't let it break me because I had to get ready for brunch.  I met my friend Y and my cousin M and her two adorable girls at the Marmalade Cafe.  We had mimosas (yes, plural) and tons of delicious food.  After brunch we shopped for a while.  Then we separated.  This is when the sadness hit me again.  I decided that even though Sadie isn't home, I could still buy her presents and cupcakes.  I bought her some great board books then went to Toys R Us where I got her a puzzle and a little farm playset.  Then I stopped at my favorite cupcake place, Yummy Cupcakes (such a perfect name!), and bought a cupcake for her and a cupcake for me.  When I got home I decided to wrap her presents.  Now they are on the toy shelf waiting to be opened.  Y was so sweet to invite me over later for more Rock Band so I wouldn't be home alone.  Just before I left, I put a candle in Sadie's cupcake and lit it.  I made a wish for her (I'm sure you can guess what it was) and put her cupcake back in the fridge.  Then I went to Y's where we proceeded to play Rock Band until 2am.  I was so tired when I got home that I went right to sleep. 

I wonder what Sadie did on her birthday.  Do you think they even acknowledged it?

Sunday, May 25, 2008

happy birthday to you...


We have presents...


We have cupcakes and wishes...


The only thing missing is the birthday girl!

Last November when I received my referral, I started imaging what this day would be like.  Family and friends, presents and cake and nothing but joy!  Never did I think that you would still be sitting in an orphanage and I would be home with no idea if and when you will ever come home.  I knew I would miss a lot of your firsts, but missing your first birthday is beyond painful.  Sadie, know that you are always in my thoughts.  I will keep fighting to bring you home and when you do get home, we will celebrate all the milestones we have missed together. 

Saturday, May 24, 2008

rock band rocks!


Last year I spent Christmas Day at my friend Y's house.  A couple of her friends came over and brought their Play Station and the game Rock Band.  I had never heard of it.  The last video game I played was Pitfall on my Atari system.  I was nervous at first but eventually tried singing and playing the drums.  As soon as I tried it, I was hooked.  We played for hours and hours. 

Last week, Y and her husband bought their very own Play Station and Rock Band.  Yippee!!!  She invited me over Thursday night after work to play and watch the premiere of So You Think You Can Dance.  OMG.  We had a blast.  This time I tried the guitar and loved it.  I also sang a little.  I just don't have the coordination for the drums; the bass drum foot pedal kills me!  Thankfully, Y loves the drums.

Then, Friday night Y hosted a "Girls' Night In."  It was a bunch of wonderful girls, tons of food, margaritas and Rock Band.  Needless to say, I had a fantastic time.  If you haven't played this game, you must try it!  I swear it's addictive.  If only I had an extra $600....I'd buy my very own! 

It was so nice to have two stress free days in a row.  Two days without crying.  What a concept.  Today was OK too.  Just a quiet day at home.  Tomorrow, is a whole different story.  Tomorrow is Sadie's first birthday.  More about that tomorrow. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

a word from cis

I just received a letter via email from CIS in HCMC.  Apparently they think I'm married because the letter was addressed to Mr & Mrs.  They actually referred to my daughter by name and got her name right.  Basically the letter says that they have still not reached an agreement with the hospital where Sadie was born so they are unable to complete the investigation.  It also goes on to say that it is their "utmost priority to resolve this issue and continue with the processing of" my case.  If that were true, I wouldn't be waiting 110 days for a determination.  My daughter would not be turning one year old sitting in an orphanage this weekend.

The letter ends by saying that they will "continue" to provide me with an update on my case.  This is the first I've heard from them since March 16th.  Then they ask that I wait 30 days before making an inquiry.  Sure, no problem.  I wouldn't want to bother them.

At least this letter was signed.  However, it is signed by someone who is supposedly out until June.  Whatever.  Several people that I know received this same letter last week so it really wasn't a surprise.  That doesn't make it any easier though.

The last 24 hours have been a complete roller coaster for me.  I was feeling pretty hopeful Sunday and Monday.  Then last night, just before going to bed, I read about a fellow blogger who got her travel approval quickly and I fell apart.  It hit me so hard.  I am genuinely happy for her, but why her and not me?  Then this morning, I learned that a family from my agency just received the initial Tu Du block letter last night.  How can there really be no progress in 2 months?  Are they even trying?  Now this.  I've cried more in the last 24 hours than I have in a while and it shows.  Everyone at work kept asking me if I was OK.  I actually had to lock my office door and just sob for a while today.  I guess I'm officially back to my dark place. 

private blogs

Seems everyone is going private these days.  I understand why.  I've already registered for the same blog name at but haven't gotten around to transferring everything yet.  It will be nice when I do though.  Then I can post pictures of my girl and keep tabs on who is reading.

Anyway...I'm posting today because one of my favorite blogs, Twin Twist of Fate, has moved (probably to go private) but I have no way of getting in touch with M.  I know she's read my blog before so I'm hoping she'll see this post and get in touch.  I definitely want to keep in touch so we can celebrate when those beautiful boys come home.  M, are you out there???

{UPDATE: I found her!!!  I swear her email address was not there when I first went to the site!  Either that or I'm an idiot.}

Sunday, May 18, 2008

a lovely sunday

I'm still having a hard time falling asleep, but once I did last night, I was able to sleep until noon.  I actually woke up feeling rested and in a surprisingly good and, dare I say, hopeful mood.  I decided to spend some time organizing Sadie's closet.  I've been avoiding spending much time in her room these days.  I took out the size 3, 4 and 5 stuff and put it in a storage bin so that everything else could fit in the closet.  I finally hung up all the stuff I have bought and received in the last few months.  Let me say that the closet is full of clothes from 9 months to 2T.  (Yes I know that's a lot of clothing for a small girl!)  I just hope she comes home soon so she doesn't start outgrowing any of them.  I've already decided that anything that is too small for her will be donated to the orphanage (along with everything else I bought and friends donated for them).  I haven't received new weight or measurements since February so I have no idea what size she is wearing these days.  In February she was 26 inches long and weighed 15.4 pounds.  I'm very curious to hear if she has gained any weight since then.  My agency says new pictures and measurements could be coming soon.

I spent the rest of the day tidying up a bit, watching reruns of So You Think You Can Dance (I can't wait for the new season to start this week!) and then made lemon pasta for dinner.  It was a lovely day.

So here comes a new week.  I'm trying to hold on to the hopeful feeling I woke up with but I'm going to be cautiously optimistic. It feels nice to get out of the dark place I've been in for a while.  I'm going to call the doctor tomorrow about getting any shots I may need and may even make an appointment to meet with the Pediatrician to get to know her a little and discuss medications I am supposed to take with me for Sadie.  Here's hoping all of this positive thinking pays off.


Thursday, May 15, 2008

yet another article

I need to carry this article with me to hand out when people ask me how things are going.  I hope this reporter continues to follow this story/mess. 

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

mother's day

So my mom is still quite ill.  She just doesn't seem to be getting any better.  Despite that, Mother's Day wasn't quite the bust I thought it was going to be.  We were going to go to dinner on Saturday night to avoid the crowds, but my mom wasn't up to it.  So, on Sunday, while my mother slept, my dad and I decided to bring dinner in and have dinner together at home.  She actually came to the table and ate (a little) with us.  It was great to see her out of bed.  She loved her gifts.  There's still one more coming from Sadie.  I ordered this book which I thought would be a nice project for her and a wonderful keepsake for Sadie.  

I took another day off on Monday and after a 10am agency conference call, crawled back in to bed and stayed there all day.  We received some good news on the call about the Tu Du block, but I really can't let myself get hopeful about it because I'm not sure I can take another disappointment.  I really don't know how to get myself out of this sad, angry place.  The bright spot of my Monday was a card that my amazing friend E sent me from Sadie.  She made it at the Kodak site.  It has an adorable picture of my girl on the front and reads: Mommy you are the BEST!!!  Inside it says:

Dear Mommy,

I may not be with you today but I am with you in spirit.  I have dreamed about you all my lil life and know that you are doing everything possible to bring us together.  In the meantime I am having a fun time with my nannies and playmates. 

I know you are coming to see me soon and it is just a matter of time that you will come get me and I will be in your arms. 

I know that once we are together that we will be together for life so it is worth the wait.  We will be best of friends and have many fun adventures.  I will always be so thankful for your determination and perseverance. 

I love you so much Mommy!

Have a wonderful Mother's Day!

I promise we will be together next year and every year going forward.




E and I have been best friends since Junior High School.  I just can't believe that she took the time to do this for me.  XOXO

Saturday, May 10, 2008

my amazing cousin

My cousin N is 10 days younger than me.  She lives in Arizona with her husband and two beautiful boys.  We rarely get to see each other and don't talk much either.  I really don't know why.  We were really close growing up.  She's just a phone call away, but she's busy with her family, especially the kids and all of their extracurricular activities (they are brilliant and talented boys!).  Well, I just checked my email and found this:

Happy Mother's Day!! 

M told me that Sadie won't be home for her birthday later this month.  I'm sure that's extremely upsetting for you.  I hope you are able to take some time during the day tomorrow to sit quietly and connect with her.  You've been holding her in your heart for months now.  Take comfort in that closeness.  Try to think of this as an extra long gestational period.  The heart ache you're feeling could be back pain, leg pain, vaginal pressure, indigestion...  Until she is in your arms, hold her tightly in your heart.  It's that love you have for her that will change both of your lives. 

Have a wonderful day tomorrow knowing you are Sadie's mother and she loves you very much for it!

Love,  N

Such an amazing email.  Such an amazing cousin. 


100 days

Well, I have finally put my hard earned license to good use and diagnosed myself as depressed.  I can no longer call this a funk or me feeling sad.  The sadness has crept into all areas of my life.  My appetite is gone.  This is huge for me because I love food.  I have a really hard time falling asleep.  Once I'm asleep I can sleep through the night, but I wake up exhausted.  I'm distracted and unfocused at work.  My house is a mess.  My stomach hurts.  I cry at the drop of a hat.  My migraines are more frequent.  I took the day off on Friday and spent the entire day in bed.  I don't know how to get out of this.

I found an old text message today from a friend.  It was from November; shortly after I received my referral.  She asked when I was going to Vietnam and I replied, "I have to wait until February or March.  Sucks, huh?"  If only. 

So tomorrow is Mother's Day.  It is not going to be an easy day.  My mom is still too sick to even get together for dinner at home.  I worked today, training a new group of volunteers.  They all know I am in the process of adopting.  There's this one sweet college kid in the group who was the first person ever to send me a thank you note after his interview.  It wasn't a suck up letter, it was just a genuine thank you.  Well, at the very end of the training today, almost everyone had left the room and he turned to say goodbye and then said, "Happy Mother's Day."  It was the sweetest moment and it hit me like a ton of bricks.  Even writing about it now, I can't stop crying. 

I bought myself a Mother's Day gift about a week ago. 


It is so pretty.  I had Sadie's monogram engraved on the front.  It took some doing to get the tiny pictures in there, but I finally got it.  Thanks to K for the tips!

So that's everything.  I can't believe it has been 100 days with truly no end in sight.  I'm tired of getting my hopes up when I'm told that there may be some good news this week or progress is being made.  Frankly, I just don't believe it anymore.  I also can't believe that there are at least 2 families with my agency who have been waiting even longer than I have.  I hate feeling so helpless.  I hate that my life is on hold until CIS decides that Sadie is truly an orphan.  Why is this happening and when will it finally be over?

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

my head is spinning...

I can't even believe all the things I've read online this week; and it's only Tuesday!  Just when you think things are looking hopeful - {SMACK} - another mind blowing road block.  I never imagined that things would get this bad.  I guess I was naive.  I knew IA had its issues, but it has truly become a nightmare. 

If you had asked me last December what I'd be doing this May, I would have told you that I would be getting ready to go back to work after 12 weeks of Family Leave.  Not even close.

With Sadie's 1st birthday just 19 days away, I started thinking about what a hard day that is going to be for me.  I can't sit home and wallow.  My mom is still not well enough for us to go do something.  So, I decided to make plans to spend Sadie's birthday with some of my best girlfriends.  The plan is brunch with cocktails (LOTS of cocktails).  Not exactly what I thought the day would be...but fun.  With any luck, I'll have good news to celebrate that day, but I'm not going to hold my breath.


Monday, May 5, 2008

wild boys

duran duran may 08 041

duran duran may 08 038

duran duran may 08 015

Oh my.....I cannot even describe how great a time we had last night.  Our seats were AMAZING!  The three of us stood and danced through the entire concert.  We were sweating like crazy, our ears were ringing (it was so loud) and our voices were hoarse (from all the screaming of course) but I can't remember the last time I felt that happy.  They sounded great and played some of our favorite songs.  I think my favorite of the night was "All She Wants Is."  When we left I felt like I had worked out for two hours but it was all worth it.  I go to A LOT of concerts and this was by far one of the best EVER.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

i HEART john taylor


OK....thinking positive.  The delay in traveling for Sadie means I'm home tonight to go to the Duran Duran concert.  That's's the big day.  Duran Duran at the Nokia Theater downtown.  Second row seats!  I've decided to take a break from email and the listserves today and just have a mellow day.  I'm listening to the new album, tidying up, wrapping a couple of presents and just having a good day.  I need a break from the nightmare that has become my life.  I can't wait to get a new tee (or two) and maybe even one for Sadie.  She WILL love Duran Duran!  I'm taking my camera with me tonight so if I get any good shots, I'll post an update tomorrow. 

Friday, May 2, 2008

a hug from a dear friend

To say that I've had a bad night would be putting it mildly.  While sobbing on the phone to my mother over the letter I received from Senator Feinstein (I'm saving this for a later post) I noticed a card in my stack of mail.  I opened it and found a card with this on the front:


Inside it simply read: Sending you a big hug!  It's from my friend W.  Her timing couldn't have been any better.  I am truly blessed with the dearest friends.

another article

Here's yet another article on the subject.  This one dares to mention the role the US has played in the breakdown between the two countries.  Thank goodness some reporters are actually doing their job and investigating the stories.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


An article that doesn't make me want to scream!  Thanks to the author for realizing that PAPs have feelings too.