14 months is a looong time to be stuck. But we are stuck no longer! I feel like a prisoner who has just been released- filled with joy and hope!!
We received word on Thursday, May 28th that we exited IBESR and would be submitted to Parquet the following day!!! I was in the car with Bella and Riley about ready to leave the house when I saw the email. I screamed so loud, "We are out! We are OUT!" They both must have thought I was crazy until the realized what I was talking about. You may think I am crazy too for getting so excited over exiting just one step. So let me explain why this is such a big deal.
Imagine a black hole- dark, mysterious, seemingly without end. Once something goes in the black hole you don't know what is happening to it or if you will ever see it again. That, my friends, is IBESR. Dossiers enter and people don't hear about them for months, years even. Files get lost. Months go by with no news. It is scary. It is a place where hearts break and dreams are shattered. So to finally be out of it is indeed like breaking out of jail. "Free at last, free at last. Thank God almighty we are free at LAST." I couldn't agree with MLK Jr more!
Well, Bella and I were planning on going to Haiti to file our I600 in July with a few other families who are also adopting from our creche. BUT, God's plans were different that my own. Ryan and I found out Monday that our I600A form extension was about to be denied because our home study is over 6 months old. In California home studies are valid for 2 years but… that did not matter to USCIS. So our options were to go to Haiti to file the I600 before June 24th and there by negate the need for the extension OR to pay $8xcc50 to update our home study. Can you guess which one we chose? We have a friend who is a flight attendant and lets us use her buddy passes to fly to Haiti (thank you thank you thank you) so we are not sure exactly when we will leave, how long we will stay or when we will arrive home. We requested an appointment to file our I600 during the week of June 15 but haven't received a confirmation of the date and time yet.
We are so excited to see Shaina again. We have all been missing her something awful and I just want to wrap my arms around her and kiss her sweet little face!
Our file is now in Parquet which is where Shaina will officially become a Swarthout. We hear about 6-8 weeks in this stage and then it is on to MOI for her passport, USCIS for her visa and then HOME!