We are still in a holding pattern, waiting to hear that our little guy's birth certificate has been obtained and our case resubmitted to court. Due to some office closures in Ethiopia it has taken a bit longer than expected to get the certificates, but we are told they should be ready this week and that cases may be resubmitted next week. Hooray! It looks like our most likely time-frame for a court date is October or November.
On the one hand, the new birth certificate requirement probably added at least 12 weeks to our process because it pushed our court date until after the rainy season closure. But on the other hand, this requirement seems to me like an absolutely necessary and valuable thing, so for that reason I am glad it was made. Personally, I have major issues with the fact that the US issues birth certificates with adoptive parents' names, without acknowledging in any way the fact that these parents did not, in fact, play a role in the child's birth. I would want my birth certificate to have my birth parents' names on it, no matter what happened in my life after I was born. Or, if I had made the heart-wrenching decision to place my child for adoption, I would still want my name to be on the birth certificate because I still gave birth to that child. Why not let a birth certificate remain the record of a child's actual birth and then issue an adoption certificate with the same legal weight as a birth certificate? I'm sure that could create issues I haven't thought of yet, but at least it would give adoptees and birth parents the respect of having truthful documentation of their lives.
[Disclaimer: I feel I should admit that I am not the most informed person on the whole issue of how an adoption is legally documented, so if someone out there reading this sees something in the above paragraph which is misinformed or not factual... help a sister out and educate me. I'm just basing my opinions on what I do know, which is admittedly not all that much. End disclaimer.]
Anyway, as sad as I am to have to wait 12 or more extra weeks to hold my little man, I am so very glad that his country of origin is taking steps to make their adoption process more ethical and respectful of the children and birth parents involved. I am hoping that we will receive a copy of our son's original (pre-adoption) birth certificate. It makes me uncomfortable to think that the only legal document we'll have related to his birth will have our names on it. Even though we will now be his parents forever, the truth is that we weren't there when he was born and a piece of paper doesn't change that.