Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Bumps in the Road

Warning: this update isn’t as positive or encouraging as K-LOVE.

I haven’t updated the blog in a few days for a number of reasons; primarily because of discouragement. We arrived Sunday evening into Addis Ababa, Ethiopia after a long 2hr flight with 5 crying babies only to learn that Ethiopia doesn’t allow Rwandan orphans into the country and they weren’t going to issue the children’s visas. Once again, it took A LOT of prayers and waiting to get the visas issued (the “chief” said the only reason he didn’t send our children back on the next flight was because they were babies). Hence my lack of blogging Sunday.

Ethiopia is as you picture it: unexplainably poor, crowded, filthy, smelly and overwhelming. Unless you have been here, you have never seen such devastating poverty. Our guest house is cool: everyone has their own bed or crib. Ryan and I are sleeping Lucy and Desi style!

Funny side story: Yesterday at Etienne’s physical when they weighed him, has was leaning on the wall and the girl wrote down 13kg. Ryan and I KNEW that he was way bigger. So we reweighed him ourselves at 17kg (37.5lbs) and told the physician. She said “No, that isn’t right, there is no way a 2 yr old can weigh that much,” attempted to pick him up and then reweighed him herself. Yup!

It has taken much prayer for me to remember that none of this was ultimately Ryan or my doing: Etienne and Zeke are our children and we’re here because it is God’s plan. The last few days have tested our faith more than anything else throughout the adoption process.

To the families waiting, I feel that I owe it to you to warn you – you have many battles to fight and you need to come prepared. The process for Rwandan children is in no way smooth or clear. Today we learned that the children’s immunization cards are in Kinyarwanda, and no one here can or will translate it. Two trips to the Embassy, some sweet talking and prayers later; we have a pediatrician signing it for us. Without the angel, we’d be stuck in Ethiopia until we could find a translator.

Second funny side story: Yesterday the 3 families were waiting for our ride and we noticed a man yelling at us. He kept repeating, “I am a terrorist, follow me so I can kill you,” as he smiled and stood at least 50 feet away. This went on for about 10 minutes, we just laughed, so he walked away smiling.

Another blessing is that Etienne is walking a little more and throwing a few less screaming sessions. He also seems to be eating a little less-like maybe he is already recognizing we’ll keep giving him what he needs.

This morning, we were told we had three appointments; those doubled and we didn’t return until late afternoon-part of this is because nothing Rwandan is routine and nothing in a van with 5 kids is either.

All the challenges and pain we have faced has reminded all of us-the Himes and Limmers too-that God is doing something so much bigger than paperwork, visas, money or red tape. We are just praying to constantly remember that God will see us through. We have 5 beautiful kids (actually 7 ‘cause Molly and Blake are AWESOME) to demonstrate His grace.


  1. thanks for sharing what you're going through. we are at the VERY beginning of the process and i'm taking ALL that you're going through in like a hawk.

    and we're praying for you!

  2. Why wouldn't they tell you that you couldn't come into Ethiopia without Visas. That is crazy. We will keep the prayers coming!

  3. Thank you,Kara, for taking the time and energy to put down your status "in writing" so we can hopefully help carry the burden with you as we pray. May God show Himself awesome and your Help, Shield, and Defender in facing all these obstacles. NOTHING can interfere with His plan for your family...your HOMECOMING is coming:)

  4. You all have been in our prayers! Kelly, Mandy and I all know what you are going through!! They almost didn't let us out of the airport in Rwanda because our kids didn't have visas yet. That was just one of many times that we didn't know how it was going to work out, but it all did. The entire time we were in Africa, I had one song stuck in my head. It was my anthem, my promise from God that we would get home with our son. It says, "Savior, He can move the mountains. Our God is mighty to save!" In fact, our guide in Ethiopia, T, he loved that song and we spontaneously broke into song at the restaurant together. Just today, I was in the copy store making copies of all the official adoption documents (all on non-standard sizes of paper) so we can complete our son's citizenship paperwork. And guess what song came on the radio at the copy store? I almost cried when I heard it because once again I was facing some of the frustration that comes with the adoption process. God sent me the reminder that He will help us see it through, all the way to the finish. Just as God has been with us through this process, He is there with you too. He will move your mountains so you can get home with your entire family. We'll continue to pray. Thank you for blogging. It's been wonderful to journey with you via the web.

  5. Thank you so much for all of your posts. Our paperwork is in Rwanda right now and we are just waiting for our approval. It is so exciting to read about your adventure. I also appreciate learning everything about the process from you.
    Thank you!!!
    Good Luck. You are in our prayers.