Thursday, May 10, 2012

"I bet they'll be pretty awesome"

Yesterday was a bad day.

Nothing awful happened, per se, but an avalanche of tiny misfortunes had me pinned down by despair. Of course the giant tremor that let loose the avalanche was the fact that it has been 7 days since we were notified of EP approval--and still no travel call. The last batch of families got their call in three days. Not a single person on the many, many forums I troll has received a travel call. It is an ominous sign that something is different this go round--that maybe my expectations need to be reset.

Of course my program specialist told me that actually, it was a sign that I need to turn off the computer. She's wise, that one.

Instead I decided to poke the situational anxiety beast and call the National Visa Center (NVC). When you call the National Visa Center (post EP approval) your goal is to find out if your child has had his/her "visa interview/embassy appearance " (VI/EA) yet. The VI/EA are typically the last steps before travel call. If VI/EA have taken place, the person at the NVC will say "Oh, he/she is so cute"--because your child's photo will be uploaded into the system. This is code for "Buy your plane tickets! Your phone is about to ring."

The second best thing to hear is "Your child's VI appointment is scheduled for..." because that gives you an idea of when to expect travel call.

What you do not want to hear from the NVC operator is "The embassy is waiting for your packet." This means that your Korean placing agency has not yet returned your "P3", or "packet" to the US Embassy. Nothing can happen until the packet is received at the embassy.

Guess which phrase I heard yesterday??

Packet out. No picture. No VI/EA appointment scheduled.

Cue sad trombone.

I was pretty devastated by this news, and mad at myself for calling in the first place. I wish I could let it all go--just trust in the process. But I feel responsible for having to readjust not only my expectations, but the expectations of everyone around me.

So I was sad and grouchy for the rest of the day.

The big kids were driving me crazy. One was exceedingly whiny, and one has poison ivy that pushes his/her sensory issues to the limit. This child is "highly spirited" to being with, and when his/her stress cup is filled to the brim by sensory input (ie: itching like crazy) he/she is really no fun to deal with.

One dog was extra bouncy because she's been trapped inside by rain for two days, and one dog is recovering from a spinal injury that requires that he be carried up and down stairs.

My inbox is filled with messages from people who I love, but cannot muster the strength to reply to. I feel like an ass. 

I owe three people who I love dearly a phone call--but I can't bring myself to dial their numbers.

Basically, I'm feeling like a failure on all fronts. And *everything* annoys me.

In the evening, after being exasperated with the kids' giggling and super-slow bedtime preparations, my son said "Hey Mom--instead of listening to stories with Dad and Miss A, do you want to snuggle?"

And it turns out that's exactly what I wanted to do. We went into his room and climbed up into his loft bed. He moved the stack of books he keeps next to his pillow and turned down his blanket. He patted the mattress and said "Mom, how do you think the snuggles will be? I bet they'll be pretty awesome."

We snuggled and talked and giggled for the next twenty minutes.

And it was indeed pretty awesome.


  1. Your son's words made me cry. What amazing people you have, Nora. Ye Hoon couldn't be luckier.

  2. What Eden said. It's true. :)

  3. Hi Nora. We are a fellow CHSFS/ESWS family. Any chance we could ask you a question via email rather than your blog? Our contact info is and our blog is Thanks! Matt and Sara