This approval is a HUGE step! It essentially means that the Chinese adoption officials have reviewed our file and his file, and have said, "Yes, you may adopt him...he will be yours!" It gives us that official approval we needed to feel "secure" about everything. As our agency case worker told us today, "Now you need to begin preparing for him to join your family!"
Unfortunately, it will still be a long while before we get to "get him." The next step is one of the longest waits - known as the LOA wait (Letter of Acceptance). It is a formality, really, but it is a long process. No one seems to know why it takes so long (can take up to 90 or more days). China will issue an official letter giving us permission - on paper - to bring Jaxson into our home and become a U.S. citizen. That letter has to be sent to U.S. Immigration, and then we will have to wait for U.S. approval to bring him here (again, a formality, really). There are a few more steps after that, and the final step is TA (Travel Approval) from China. Sadly, it will take up to 6 months for all of this to happen. It could process sooner, but likely not.
Instead of dwelling on another lengthy wait, here are some details about our "little man:"
- Jaxson will be two in November and has a repaired cleft lip and palate. We have seen "before" pictures of his lip, and the difference is amazing!
- A U.S. doctor saw him in July. We have spoken with her through email (and in person) and she said he is one of the best cases she has ever seen when completing medical missions in China. He is on-target developmentally in all areas other than speech, and commented that his repair was "beautifully done." Our local pedicatrician has also commented on what good care he has received and how healthy he appears to be according to records.
- He is currently in foster care and has been for a long time. The foster agency is an American-sponsored agency, so he has received exceptional medical care, attention and love. We are thrilled that he is being cared for in a home with parental figures.
- Jaxson is from the Guondong province, which is in the southern region of China (much warmer climate than some areas).