June 15, 2011
Here are the events that have transpired since last I typed:
I rode a train, which was nerve wracking for me, since the last two trains made me sick. But I did just fine! I was so happy and relieved. I even slept for some of the ride. Then we hopped in to our taxi and took off. First to the inspector, who was a little too busy to come with us. Next to the orphanage.
I was impressed with all the activities the kids had there. Several play areas, especially for an orphanage so small. We walked in to the orphanage, asked to see our girl, and then waited. And waited. First we waited for the doctor to come in. The psychologist was called and we met with her for a few minutes. Not much was known about the girl's past which made me sad. And then, eventually, the doctor came in. She, the psychologist and the deputy director all sang the same tune. Basically they told us she is unable to learn, she's an invalid, and she will never be able to live an independent life. When her doctor told us all about everything that is wrong with her and how mentally impaired she is, we smiled and said “Thank you, we'd like to see her now.” The doctor we hired to come with us told us he was getting as much information as he could and then taking it with a grain of salt. And as Nastya's doctor left she said “I can't scare them. Nothing seems to scare them!”
Then we were told we couldn't see her because the director, who was out sick that day, was on her way in and we needed to wait for her. When she finally came in, she continued to tell us what a burden this girl would have on our family, our finances, and our future. To be honest, I was about ready to scream at this point. She kept going on and on!
FINALLY! The meeting took place 3 hours after we first arrived! She is so beautiful and stole Dave's heart right away. The doctor we hired took a look and Nastya and tried to conduct an IQ test, which was harbored by the fact that she's shy and had the director, the psychologist, a caregiver, our translator, and us all staring at her, hovering over this sweet, shy girl. Not to mention they would all say things like “Oh, she doesn't know that.” or “She can't do that yet.” Well, of course not! Not if you're telling her she can't do it!!
After sitting and minding the doctor for almost 30mins, we got to play with her for a few minutes. Then it was back to the doctor and more play. All in all I think we got an hour with her before lunch. We walked back to the car and the doctor told us that some of what they said is true. Her logic was not very formed and she was at about a 3 year old level. He said most likely it's some sort of mental issue, not just orphanage delay. Our translator came in and said that the director was sick and since she was there, do we have an answer for her? Would we like to adopt this girl? I was unsure, but because of Dave's resolve, I went for it. I mean, isn't this the kind of kid that perhaps would get looked over because of her disability that is really in need of a good home? Let's do this thing!
So Luda went back to tell the director, who wanted to hear it straight from us. So we went back in to the orphanage and told her yes, we want to adopt her. Why? She asked. We feel like we could provide what she needs. Why a girl and not a boy? Because Dave wants a girl. (I thought that was a strange question.) We explained to her that in the states, this is not as much of an issue. There are programs and educational help. It's really not a big deal. Eventually she relented and we came to an agreement on an orphanage donation and that was that.
We left and ran around for another few hours. We sat down to eat at about 2:30pm only having had snacks up to that point. We were all starved! But, oh man, was that food flipping good!! It was a traditional Ukrainian restaurant and the food was so good I didn't know if I ever wanted to leave. Mmmmm....
Back in the car and Luda says “So, what do you want to name your girl? I need to know now.” Um, what? Thankfully, we'd been talking about it for a while so we had a few names picked out. Her name is now Amelia Nastya Moser. Nastya is short for Anastasia. She has black hair and blues eyes with a sweet face. She seems like she has a gentle personality, but she could just have us fooled.
At about 7ish we were dropped off at our apartment. That's right, folks. 12 hours running around in a car!
Today we went grocery shopping at a supermarket...a walmart type place. With fresh veggies and fruits, you bag them and go to a counter to have them weighed and then they place a sticker price on it. There are so many things they don't have here! Like any type of spaghetti sauce or tomato paste (my Italian brother in law would have a mini heart attack).
We found an internet cafe and sat down for an hour to eat and reconnect. Then we went to visit Nastya. She was so excited to see us! We gave all the kids a piece of candy after asking permission and then sat down with Nastya. Just like with Eli, it's hard to imagine her home with me. But I can tell you that I'm already having to hold myself back from buying cute clothes and bows! Her hair was in this really cute double french braid. It was so cute!
I'm starting to get the impression that this is an orphanage for special needs kids, those that may have a mental issue here or there. I think the thing that surprises me the most is my desire to be “normal” and have that “normal” kid. I guess when it comes down to it, I'm just as superficial as anyone else. I thought I would have such a heart for a child that has a mental disability, and I think I will, but right now it seems overwhelming. I think about all the activities she won't be able to do because of her mental status, all the things I wish I could be a part of. Like sports, AWANA, maybe even BSF.
After our visit today, I have to say that Nastya has a lot of energy. She did something similar to Eli when he first went outside...she ran around to everything wanting to play for just a few minutes at a time! I think she'll settle down a little as we visit more. I think we're going to visit once a day since we have to take a taxi to see her. We'll see how much it costs in the end.
We're home now, wishing we could talk to people via any means we can, but the internet will not be fixed until tomorrow. Sigh. Oh, well. At least we have a reason to wake up tomorrow!