Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Day 6.2.2--Kiev

Oh, this was good.  It is so good to have information!!  Here was what happened and some of what we know now:

We did not get to sign the paper we were going to sign.  As a matter of fact, when we arrived at the office and our facilitator brought up Nastia's name the woman's response was, "Oh yeah.  I forgot."  Glad Marsh speaks Russian so we can know just how much they love and care about us at the SDA.

However, we did learn that we will go sign the paper tomorrow and that the director of the SDA will need to sign the papers, too, so we can have the appointment tomorrow.  If she doesn't, we will have to wait until Monday. 

After leaving the SDA office, we got to sit down and really discuss our situation with our facilitator.  I brought out my trusty purse calendar (thanks, Mom!) and showed him exactly what we are dealing with schedule-wise.  This was SO USEFUL.  He was then able to work through the timeframe and give us a pretty accurate, reality-based prognosis about what we can expect depending on the variable of the director signing the papers.

We prefer not to discuss the confusing possibilities and details at this point, but suffice it to say, we would much prefer that the director sign the papers today or tomorrow and let us have our appointment tomorrow.  We are blatantly asking for prayers in our behalf to make this occur.  Our chances are not great that it will, but I believe the Lord can move her to do that.  But if not, we will go with the flow and do have a Plan B.

One thing that is important to understand about the SDA (State Department of Adoptions) in Ukraine is that they do not care in the slightest what inconvenience or cost (in time, money, emotion, effort or otherwise) we adopting families face.  I have had so many people say to me, "You'd think they would work with you to get those kids out of there because they will have a better life here!"  Well, you'd think...but you'd be wrong.

They don't really like the idea of their kids leaving the country.  I guess they'd rather they were adopted by local families, but people are just not able to feed and house them let alone be interested in older children.   Adoption here really only takes place if couples can't have children of their own.  They then are much more interested in the younger children.  Kids Ruslan's age have such a slight chance of being adopted that it is miraculous when they are.  Ruslan and Nastia are fully aware of this, too, which is why they had determined they were going to stick together and not let anyone separate them.  They had to have understood that making that commitment to each other meant turning down any adoption for Nastia.  She was choosing to stay with Ruslan, knowing that the decision would seal her fate.  I am so moved by her loyalty to him.  It's remarkable.

So, back to my point...the SDA has absolutely no desire to see us (or anyone) have an easier road.  They will not do anything to make concessions, bend rules, show get the idea.  There job is NOT to help these children find homes.  There job, I guess, is to push papers and make sure they never do things to be accused of corruption.  They also have the power, and aren't afraid to use it, to put your papers aside or in the bottom of the pile if they feel like it.  It's better not to rock the SDA boat.

The local authorities are very different.  They work with the orphanages and facilitators and seem to care much more about the efforts to get the children into loving homes, wherever they may be.  We know from our discussion with our facilitator today that our orphanage staff is compiling papers and making sure everything is prepared for us to come and get things moving.  They want to see those kids in homes and they are constantly working toward that goal.

We also know that Ruslan has been asking, "When are they coming?"  The director said he's been asking and they are anxious for our was her first question when our facilitator talked to her recently.  THAT made me so happy.  Without much communication with them and being isolated from our kids at home, it's made me wonder if anyone really cares about this or not.  It's so painful sometimes.  That knowledge gave me a much-needed boost!

Bottom line, hoping for the SDA to do anything to help us is fruitless and a waste of time, energy and creativity (trust me on that one).  However, there are miracles on other levels that could possibly occur.  Our facilitator gives those a 10% chance.  So we've decided to plan for realities and pray for miracles!

Tomorrow is the deciding factor on how the rest of this story plays out.  Pretty big hinge that director is sitting on...and she doesn't even know it!  (Trust me, I already offered to track her down at her seminar, send her flowers, whatever was needed.  Our facilitator's response was, "She is the perfect bureaucrat.  It won't help."  The rest of his comments were...well, ask me how I know all that you just read about the SDA...minus our personal experience.)

Without overwhelming you with details, I can tell you that we will be able to visit Ruslan and Nastia either this weekend or middle of next week, depending on tomorrow.  We'd like to see them this weekend.   All but our faith and prayers are out of our control, so that is what we will be focusing our energies on.  We invite you to do the same!

I had a friend ask me why we can't see the children now since  we already have approval and the referral for Ruslan.  I would like to address the entire process in a separate post so anyone who would like to have a clear picture of expectations can have it.   Short answer:  they are a 16 hour train ride away from Kiev.

I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do with all I've learned regarding the ins and outs of adoption in Ukraine, but perhaps the information will be of use to someone...somewhere...some day. All I know is...I want all my kids home together ASAP.

Thank you for your prayers.


  1. We are here for you! Here for the kids as well! Thank you for being as direct and detailed as you could be so that we get a sense of what you are going through!
    Love, Jane

  2. Alisa-
    Just wanted you to know I was praying for you. And I thought you might want to see this blog:
    My sister-in-law's sister and husband adopted Sergei last summer. It was nice to read the end of their story - finally together and being a family. You are an awesome writer and a faithful woman! Kirstin

  3. Oh good gracious!! I do believe you are teaching the rest of us and paving the way... but that does not ease your burdens or help you. I wish I could ease your burdens. I am praying for you, for your family, and for Ruslan and Nastia.. that the Lord will bless them with peace. And you to.

  4. Keep the faith! It will happen. Hopefully things will work out for the best tomorrow. I love your posts - it takes me back! Good luck and try to get some rest.

  5. Praying for the 10% miracle to be God's will and an early Father's day gift to spend time with Nastia and Ruslan this weekend. Keep up the faith and remember this is the peace that you need before meeting your new son and daughter. He may be allowing them to have a needed peace in their hearts.

  6. Wow, what a road you are travelling my dear friend! I can see that some of the biggest lessons you are learning are the same ones I am learning from reading your posts and fighting my own overwhelming battles: patience, trust in the Lord, the ability to let go when so much seems out of your own control, and love for those children. I am confident it will all work out. I wish it could be easier for you. But there's another lesson - that what we want is not always what's best for us. In fact, it is probably rarely what is really best for us!

    So, to quote a famous prophet, "O that I were an angel and could have the wish of mine heart. . . That I might go forth and speak with the trump of God. . . But behold, I am a [woman] and do sin in my wish. For I ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me. I ought not to harrow up in my desires the firm decrees of a just God. Yea, and I know that good and evil have come before all men. Now, seeing that I know all these things, why I should I desire more than to perform the work unto which I have been called? Therefore, we see that the Lord doth counsel in wisdom, according to that which is just and true."

    I am working hard on learning this too. He will lead you, guide you and walk beside you. Just keep hanging in there and teaching us all through your marvelous faith!