We are going to Korea! Don't get too excited... I still don't know WHEN we will be going.... all I know is that we will be. Instead of having Eden escorted here to the states, Ron and I decided that we are going to travel there to pick her up! We are so excited! We will be staying at least four days... probably a little longer. We will fly into Incheon airport... the city where Eden was born... and then travel to Seoul. We will most likely be staying at the SWS guesthouse. This is a "hotel" that is run by the Korean agency that is facilitating the Korean side of our adoption. We have been told that the people that run the guest house speak English and there will most likely be other families staying there who are also adopting. If the guesthouse is full we will be staying at a hotel. We will have a couple of days to take in some sights before meeting our girl. We will probably have one day to visit Eden at her foster family's home before picking her up to take home. I am very excited to meet her foster family as well as see where she has been living for the past five months. We will likely pick her up for good on the way to the airport or the day before we leave. We will receive an itinerary with the dates and times we will be meeting Eden either shortly before we leave for Korea or when we arrive at the guesthouse.
We have been researching and learning as much as we can about this trip. It has been great because it has helped keep our mind busy and not focused so much on the wait for our travel call and our craziness with USCIS. We originally planned on having Eden escorted, but once we heard from other families who have made the trip and what a wonderful experience it was for them... we began to think about traveling. We found a solution to some other roadblocks that would have otherwise prevented us from traveling as well. We will not be taking the boys with us. I know I will miss them terribly, but know they will be in good hands. Ron has been working crazy hours in preparation taking time off of work. This is the busiest time of year for him so it hasn't been easy. Last night he didn't get home until after 10:00! He is adamant about taking the trip though and will do what it takes so that he is able to go. I have to admit that I am nervous for the plane ride. I do not enjoy flying and know that I will probably spend a great deal of time in the bathroom with my nervous stomach and motion sickness... too much information??? Right now I am choosing not to think about the flight and focusing on what we are going to do once we arrive. I will post some of the places we plan on visiting while in Korea at another time.
Another blessing this trip will bring is more knowledge about Eden's homeland. For the past three years we had been learning all we could about China. Everything happened so quickly with our Korean adoption that we really have not learned that much about Korea. In researching for this trip I have such an appreciation for this beautiful country. I am so blessed that when Eden asks me about Korea or her foster family I can tell her so much more than I could if we decided to escort. I will have been there and will have video and pictures of important places and people in her life.
In addition, I am thankful that we can make this trip for Eden's foster family as well. The agency in Korea has expressed that meeting the adoptive parents makes for an easier transition not only for the babies, but for the foster families.
We will be leaving for Korea within two weeks of getting the call that Eden is ready for travel. I still can't believe we are actually going!!! I am so excited!!!