Oh I have so much to write about! But this is the topic that's most pressing on my heart right now so here's what I'll tell y'all:
My prayers have changed so much in just one week.
I've been praying for our child in Ethiopia since long before we ever knew he'd be from Ethiopia. But they were general prayers. Then once we knew we'd be adopting from Ethiopia I began praying for a specific child and that someone would be loving on him or taking care of him that day. But now... my prayers have gotten much more specific.
I started doing some of our 10 hours of Hague-required training (Hague is the international adoption agreement between countries. Ethiopia actually isn't a Hague country but that just means some of our paperwork is different). The first hour was about all the things that can go wrong in the adoption process. There's a lot but I'm okay with that. I think because I already have two children the urgency isn't as strong for me to hurry up and find another child... although I anticipate that changing once we actually have a referral for a specific child. After that first hour, the next three hours were about all the things that can be wrong with your child: attachment issues, mental health/behavioral issues, physical problems... the list goes on and on. I know our child will not be 100% healthy like my first two were... I have no control over prenatal care or anything that happens to him in his first months (or year) of life while he's not with us. And I know children don't come into care because they have wonderful loving nurturing families and environments... it's because they don't have those things that they need to be adopted.
My prayers have gone from simple "please God be with our little one today and with those who are with him" to "God please protect him from the trauma associated with abuse, neglect, and malnutrition." I will continue to pray specifically for protection and strength for him during the year and however many months until we get to bring him home. I'm praying he will have divine immunity to the environment he's in and will have the strength to get through the trauma of being left behind by his family, of losing his birth mother, the trauma of having to leave his caregivers in Ethiopia, and that his little heart will still be open to accept the love that our family wants to pour all over him. And I know that God can do all that.... I know that God can protect him from what he'll face over the next year and I pray God gives our family the resources to provide whatever he needs once he gets here in order to continue to overcome all of that.
I have a lot of praying to do.