Fishers family welcomes home two adopted Congolese children; waits for release of third

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FISHERS, Ind. (June 18, 2014) — A Fishers family is welcoming a couple of new loved ones home. Amanda Larner had been waiting for her adopted children to come from the Democratic Republic of Congo since last year.

Two of her three kids are now here, as she waits for her daughter’s release from that nation. Dominic and Malachi have been getting used to their new lives in Fishers. The Larner’s home is much bigger.

“More fun, louder, lots of dancing, not much down time, but that’s exciting,” said Amanda Larner.

It’s the price you pay when you have four children living in your home, but Mrs. Larner is most definitely willing to pay that price.

“It is amazing, we have been smiling, and loving life since we heard that they were able to come home and given an exit letter,” Larner said.

There had been a hold on issuing those exit letters by the Congolese government since last September. Even though the children have Visas, and are legally considered adopted, Dominic and Malachi’s exit letters had been blocking their trip home to Fishers. But, they arrived last week to their own bed, toys and the modern conveniences not seen in the DRC.

“Even carpet, and a train table, and ya know, a swing,” Larner said. “I think the first time in the house, they saw the swing and they ran out and touched it, and then, Dominic, I just put on there and pushed him and he giggled so loud that we just started laughing.”

As sweet as that is, it’s bittersweet, because the Larner’s third adopted child, Rosalie, is waiting for her exit letter.

“Leaving her was the single hardest thing I’ve done in my life. I could just tell from her stress that I wanted to be able to bring her home, and I can’t,” Larner said.

She is hoping hard work and pressure by Indiana lawmakers, which has proven itself in the release of her boys, will continue so Rosalie can come home, too.

“We’re just parents, we just want our children, just like anybody else that didn’t have their kids living in their home, that’s all we want,” Larner said.

There is some adjustment, because Dominic and Malachi know Lingala, which is the language in the Democratic Republic of Congo. They are learning some English, and the the family is learning some Lingala. Larner also said the kids are enjoying some of the favorite foods that we don’t give a second thought to, like apples, pizza and milk.

Dozens of families from Indiana, and across the country, are heading to Washington, D.C. next week. They’ll be meeting with Senators and members of Congress. They’ll also be meeting with the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.