About Me

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My husband and I, the Dynamic Duo, have been married since 2003. We've weathered the storm of chronic disease (diagnosis 2006), infertility (diagnosis 2007), turning 30 (2006/2007 respectively) a first adoption (2009) of a tender hearted, compassionate Ukrainian BIG boy (born 2006), who has told us he'd like a baby sister, baby brother, big brother, and REALLY big sister. We recently completed our second Ukrainian adoption journey, which brought us a daughter (born 2005). We'll see what else God brings our way!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

June 15, 2011

I've run across a post about our time in Ukraine that I wasn't comfy sharing while I was there.  Ever get that feeling you're being watched?  I wanted to play it safe with this adoption, so I withheld this post until we got home...and then forgot about it!  You'll see what a tough time we had while there.  This is the exact opposite experience we had with our first adoption.

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!


Aaron & Elizabeth said...

I think we have all been there. And I'm sure next "June 15" you will be amazed at how much she has changed! Our Director also kept telling us we should not adopt "these kids". At our court we had to hand write a paper for the judge telling her we had been told of all of the children's issues and that we still wanted to adopt them, which our facilitator had to translate word for word and then was kept by the court. I guess flying half way around the world and weeks of visits wasn't enough? We just look back and laugh now...

The McGowans said...

Has it become easier or more difficult to address Amelia's issues as you get to know her more? How are you feeling now about having a child that others see as not typical?

Keep looking for more of her beauty, and I hope you can surround yourself with people who know Amelia well and love her. For me, that is the only thing that buffers the empty feeling I get when others give me the "your child is a monster" or "something is not right with that kid" stare.

Hope you are enjoying getting ready for Christmas!

MoserUpdates said...

Martita...Hmmmm...I'm not sure it's easier or more difficult to address her issues. She still surprises us often with her antics! (Like destroying books...that happened this morning.) And we still don't know why she tears things apart. Perhaps still nerves?

I guess it doesn't bother me much to have a not typical kid. Eli is not typical physically and I hurt so much for him now that he's noticing he's different. But I also think not being typical builds character. She doesn't really see herself as being different yet. And, of course, we're not really sure she has a mental disability yet. She isn't learning the language as fast as I thought she would, but that could be for a variety of reasons.