Sink or Swim

Friday, January 26, 2007

Ups and Downs

I'm certainly familiar with ups and downs after 16 months of them during our wait for referral. And in theory, I knew they would continue (and will continue once we are home), but knowing this doesn't seem to make it any easier. And some of the downs are actually unrelated to the adoption, although it is magnifying their impact... Downs for the week:
  1. I may not be getting my annual bonus from my employer. I recognize that we have had a horrible sales year (my company is primarily in the mortgage industry), but employees have always been reassured that 2/3 of our bonus is based SOLELY on our own performance, completely independent of company performance. Bonuses are a big chunk of many people's salaries -- for me it is more than 20%. And they come out the second pay period in Feb. To wait until the month before to potentially yank these funds is just unconscionable. Coming at the beginning of my leave (i.e. travel expenses and time off without pay, other than some PTO), it is a double blow. We will recover, but it is a huge shock. I am sick to my stomach, and at this point I just want to know one way or another if it is happening.
  2. TAs seem to have come for 80-90% of this past referral batch, but not for our agency. This means that we will be at the back of the line for getting a good date for our Consulate Appointment (i.e. soon after Chinese New Year). This is a big down for two reasons. First and foremost, it means a longer wait to meet our daughter and bring her home. I know it is just a matter of weeks, and for those who are still waiting, that seems minor. But for us it is not. Second, it might keep me from meeting some of my online/blogging friends. If we travel quite a bit later, we might completely miss them, and that would break my heart a little. As I mentioned previously, this group has become like family to me, and Guangzhou might be my only chance to meet some of these wonderful people (Corinne, Katie, Sparky, Kikalee, Am Family...).
  3. The stress of #1, combined with the general "we are so not ready" panic that has set in at our house, has made R and me cranky and easily irritated by each other's every word. We know this is a time when we need each other's support, and we need to treat each other very kindly. And yet, we are not. We're working on it though.
  4. The contractor who will be backing me up while I'm out on leave started this week. She's great, very capable, very take charge and digging right in. Sounds like an up, right? Well, it has ended up being a harsh reminder to me of several things -- first, that I've become a little lazy at work and am coasting a bit; second, that I have fallen behind in a few technology-related things (normally a strong suit for me), and third, that I've lost a good chunk of my sense of style. Don't laugh! She's stylish in a funky in a non-threatening way (no attitude or pretention about fashion), and I'm finding myself envious that she clearly has a signature style. I'm pretty sure I used to...

Ups for the week:

  1. My travel mate, Karin. As I was writing #2 above about TAs, she emailed me this: Don't get bummed out yet! [Our agency] is very particular in what days of the week they schedule the CA appts for, and with our small group (4 families), they will get us in! This is my educated guess...if they try and schedule our consulate appt on a Thursday (which they kind-of referenced at one time with the extended stay in Guangdong Province), then maybe they will shoot for a CA on March 15. We will need to be in country at least 14 days prior to that (I am planning for a 17 day trip), so that would mean travel at last week of February. That is what I am going to hope for until I am told something different! Why can't I be like this?! Bless her heart, the message cheered me up. And I'm just ignoring the part about 17 days in Guangzhou, ok?!
  2. My husband is adorable. A big up. Despite my comments in #3 above, I have been so happy with R as a "father to be" since our referral. He had really disengaged about things over the past few months. When I would try to show him other referral photos or relate stories about another family's time in China, his response was generally "if it's not about our referral/daughter, it doesn't really matter." It was worrying me, but ever since we saw our daughter's face, he has kicked into full-on father mode. He talks to her picture, has started reading some of her books (with voices no less!), and just generally has become "fully engaged and with the program" guy.
  3. I worked out before I went into the office this morning and took home half of my lunch in a doggie bag. Baby steps, but ones I need to keep taking.
  4. We have a nice weekend ahead -- happy hour with friends downtown at a jazz club tonight, coffee and shopping with LimboForLibby tomorrow, and lunch with our travel group on Sunday.
  5. I did two loads of teeny tiny laundry last night. Made me smile.

OK, can you tell I needed to make sure there were more ups than downs? I'm a simple girl with simple needs...


Blogger C said...

I am SO sorry about your work stress in particular! That just is not right.

But I'm confident that you'll work things out as you need to. Hang in there and feel free to gripe to me any time!


1/26/2007 07:33:00 PM  

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