Tuesday, September 17, 2013


At 6:58 this morning my phone rang... I let out a shriek as I ran to pick it up. It was the call we have been waiting for- FINAL APPROVAL!!! We are now officially and legally the parents of Jonah RiYoon! There was a time when John and I thought we would never be parents and now we have two sons. I can't stop crying - so overwhelmed with joy and relief.

"The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy." Psalm126:3

I am so sorry to all those who have followed our journey and to my family and friends that keep up with us through this blog for having to take down blog posts and for not being able to post updates from Korea. Just prior to our first meeting with Jonah, we heard that officials may be monitoring social media and would not look favorably upon posting pictures or details about our adoption process so I needed to be cautious. Now that we are legally his parents I hope to be able to post some pictures and details about our trip.

Overall, we had a great trip. Joshua is a fabulous traveler. He did so well on both plane rides and touring around Korea. He also handled the meeting with his foster mom really well.

Our court date went great. We had the nicest judge. He told us we had approval at the end and that he thought we would be great parents for Jonah (almost made me cry). We still had to wait for the written preliminary approval, but it was such a relief to know we had approval. We are living proof that you can still get approval with a somewhat disruptive, not perfectly behaved child. Joshua only got a 20 minute nap and the court was running late, so by the time we got in there, he was not at his best! As soon as we got in, he loudly pronounced that he was hungry, wouldn't sit still, kept talking, etc, but the judge didn't even blink an eye over it.

The most difficult part was the meetings with Jonah. Our first meeting with Jonah was especially difficult; he was very shy with me and wouldn't interact with me at all. It was way beyond normal two year old stranger anxiety. It was obvious he knew something was up and he wanted no part of it whatsoever! Who could blame him. He was much more receptive to John though, which makes complete sense because he is closest to his foster mom. He and Joshua also did not get along very well. Our social worker visited him last February and we know from her description that the way he was acting was very out of character. It makes me sad that we didn't get to see his real personality prior to his world being completely turned upside down.

Our second meeting with Jonah was much better. He still overwhelmingly preferred John, but I did have a great moment with him taking turns blowing bubbles, I would blow some air, make a face, and he would just crack up. Made me so happy! I was just so grateful for this; he actually gave me eye contact and it just made me feel like eventually everything will be okay. The most challenging part was the two boys, they did not get along well at all. Let's just say that we are calling it a win, since there was no blood. In all seriousness though this will be one of the most challenging aspects of bringing Jonah home; the level of violence was way beyond brothers fighting as brothers do, so PLEASE don't tell me they are just fighting like brothers. Brothers may fight, but they still share love and a bond which Joshua and Jonah do not yet have. We would so appreciate your prayers for their relationship.

I will be heading back to Korea next week!


Rachel said...

I am so thrilled to hear this news! We have two boys a year apart in age both from Korea and we had a lot of struggles when our younger son came home. Their bond took a long time to form and I wondered if they would ever love each other. It was very difficult. These days (2 years later) i frequently find tears coming to my eyes when I hear them randomly telling each other "I love you!" and see them playing and laughing together as best friends. It was hard for a while but so worth going through to get to the other side. Congratulations again!! Let the adventure begin!!

Wendi Kitsteiner said...

Soooo excited for you. Two boys jumping in rain puddles!

The Woodfords said...

So thankful to hear things went (relatively) well! Excited for you as you head back to pick up your new son! Praying for you all!