Monday, September 8, 2008

MONDAY- EMBASSY APPOINTMENT

Sorry guys. I am really trying to fit this in but we are going to sooooo many doctor's appointments.
Monday morning-
We made it to the Embassy and stood in the line to go through security.
As I packed the diaper bag earlier, I threw in four toys without thinking.
Jake enjoyed being passed between the two of us and really did not like the blanket around him at all as we waited outside the barred doors. He did have a thin jacket on but he also had a wet cough and I felt he needed the blanket up close to his head. He didn't agree and spent most of his time trying to pull it off.
What was sad was that even if he didn't want it on, he didn't have the motor skills to grab the blanket and pull it off. Worse yet, if he would shake his head to try and cause it to fall off his eyes would start rolling around and he would get dizzy.
Finally I gave in. The country's traditions were not as important as keeping this little guy happy and stable.
Our time came from security. Jake's blanket and diaper bag went through BUT for the first time I realized of the four toys, three were electronic and could not go in with us. UGH. Why didn't I check this? To be truthful though I wasn't all that upset. He just didn't seem to have it together enough to care about the toys anyway.
We quickly went into the room and found seats and Henry jumped right into line for us. Now our appointment was 7:15 and we were #5 so I thought at least this would go quickly and I could go back to the hotel and cry some more.
Number 1 was not called until 8:30!!!! I guess there were some computer issues. So right off the bat we had sat for one hour.
Jake did very well for this first hour playing with my hair. Then it got ugly and I was never so happy to see a child get the wigglys. He wanted to sit in a chair of his own and I gave him the only toy we could bring in, a plastic toy car. He took great pride in running it off the side of the chair. We would pick it up and hand it back with a smile.
He needed a diaper change so we went and took care of that and refilled his bottle with the water cooler water.
Henry had finally returned with our paperwork and asked for our money. We gave him the cash and he and Blake went up to pay our fees. That took about 10 minutes.
While they were gone I looked around at the other children. We were Number 5 of six children, two babies, Jake and three other toddlers.
Baby 1 somehow managed to sleep through this whole thing. Baby 2 played on her mommy's lap. She was 9 months old. As I watched her play I realized most of her skills were so much better than Jake and she was a year younger.
If you know this part of the procedure you know as many as 50- kids can be seen in one morning. Where are the other 44? Who is loving and caring for them?

God I know you are going to perform a miracle in Jake's life. I just don't know when and how.

I also met a "Help Me Grow" case manager who was adopting her second son. Her son was Jake's age and she thought he was delayed "a lot". At least he was sitting upright on his own and could almost walk.

She asked how old Jake was and I said almost two. Her mouth dropped but she did a great recovery. She said she thought he was about 10 months old. Nope.

By this time Blake came back and we sat in silence. Jake sat on my lap.

She went on to ask the usual questions. How long was our wait? Was he orphanage or foster home? Was he given any sort of therapies while in foster care?

I was polite but inside I was screaming. "Look lady it is obvious something isn't quite right here. If I could have stopped it, I would have. Let me out of here."

I just felt the eyes of all the other parents in the room staring and shaking their heads in shock and pity.

"Don't pity us. We are a family and that is all that matters. Don't look at us. We are going to be all right. Don't pity us. God has a special miracle for this little boy. God has a special plan for this little life. I want to cry again. I want to leave all these stares behind me and just lay on the bed with my little guy and hold his sweet little hands. God where are you? I feel you but my insides are churning. I feel dizzy from confusion. I feel you telling me it will be all right but it feels so small and this is so big. Please let me feel again the strength of last night. Please help me. Please don't leave me here by myself. Please."

As I was sitting there with all this going through my mind, I realized Jake was fussing. Now that was a good sign. S and M told me he never fussed one time. My thought was he knew it wouldn't do him any good.
We got up and walked to the back of the area. As I rocked him in my arms he smiled. A smile I longed to see. I could see God's love and contentment in those eyes. I could once again feel His presence. It was so strong I thought I would buckle under the feeling. He was there standing not beside me but in me. Holding me just as I held Jake. God was making me feel content just as I had Jake.

God was telling me with a rush of His spirit that things will be all right and I need to quit worrying. Easier said than done even with such a presence. I tried. I really, really did. Although I felt better I was still concerned.

Concern is still a feeling I have even now. Concern not fright or unbelief. Concern for what our son was facing in his future. Concern that as his mother, I might not be up to what would be further on down the road.

Blake brought a chair over to the corner for me to sit on but it didn't matter. My baby boy was in my arms and to me he wasn't heavy. He was perfect.

I continued to pray and bask in this feeling of love God provided for me.

All of a sudden, Blake said, "They called our name." It was time to find out what to do. The major problem was I didn't know what answers we were looking for and how that would change anything.

Evidently the credit card machine had gone down so we had moved to #3 in line while the others waited on approvals. I was so happy we brought cash. :)

Couple 1 went into the "room" and came back out in about three minutes. So did couple 2.
The use of the word "room" is pushing it. This room consisted of two chairs that backed up into the door that luckily opened out, a plate glass window in front of the chairs and then one chair for the Embassy appointment and another door.

He asked immediately for our tax returns. He looked over them and then handed them back.

The time had come. I swallowed hard and started to explain our problem. How do we correct this to make sure other people don't have this problem. What do we do?

I saw the man's facial expression change while I explained what had happened. He looked so caring.

He told us that he couldn't help us. It was his job to look at our taxes only and make sure we could financially care for the child.

Then he said, "Off the record, you need to get this child to a doctor immediately here in Guatemala. Please tell the lady at your next stop what you told me. Good luck and congratulations."

All together our time with him was about 10 minutes. We still weren't sure exactly what to do.

Henry came up to us and said, "Ms. Facilitator doesn't want you to tell the Embassy about the offer to find him a new home. "

"Did you just talk to her? "

"No but I am repeating what S said she told her last night and she also said we are to go straight to the doctor after this appointment."

I just stood there. The next person called our name. This Embassy worker was fantastic.

In order to prevent confusion in our ongoing work with the Department of State to keep this from happening to someone else, details will be limited.

We pleaded our case again and this time I told them about the "disruption" in adoption comment.

She then explained that was "human trafficking" and would be a federal offense. Also she asked for our agencies name. I also told her the last name of our facilitator was known to the DOS because her sister just got out of prison for the same thing. (If you are familiar with Guatemala adoptions you know who this is. If you don't go to guatadopt.com and look through the news section.)

She suggested if that was even a thought we needed to not say a word until Tuesday evening when we picked up our paperwork and in the meantime get him to a doctor.

Did we swear the information in the file was true to the best of our ability? UMMMMM. Ummmm. Stare at her with a blank stare on both our faces. Finally not knowing what to say I said, "Our information and paperwork is 100% true so I will swear to that." She asked Blake if that was his answer to and he said "yes".

She confirmed Jake was Jake by looking at his passport and his beautiful sleeping face and then gave a very sincere apology for what our son had been through and wished us the best of luck.

We were done. Legally in the sight of the Guatemalan and US governments Jake was ours and we were his. No one could change that. His life was now in our hands.

When we stepped away Henry quickly whisked us away to the doctor's office. They were waiting.

5 comments:

DebbieT said...

another cliffhanger?!! Cindi!!! You definitely know how to keep us coming back for more. As I read your posts, I realize how strong you are! You're awesome and Jake's awesome! Hugs, DebbieT

Becky said...

PLEASE don't make us wait so long for the next installment:):) I was so hoping Jake would post an update on how he is doing these days. On another note - can you beieve Anabeli and Daniel have not been home longer than they were in Guat - they came home at 22/23 mos and they have now been home that long -how time flies.

Live to love and laugh said...

Becky,
OH MY. I guess I had not taken the time to think about it. What big children they are. That has stunned me beyond belief.

Amy said...

Ok, seriously- you are killing me here! I mean, I know you are a busy mama and all but PLEASE finish (like right now) I can't handle the suspense! (Can you tell that patience is not my strength?) LOL No really- so proud of you my sweet friend. Jake is such a blessing!!! Amy

ModernMommy said...

Oh goodness Cindi. I just clicked on your blog on a fluke, I was looking at an old e-mail you had sent me from adoption.com in regards to our wonderful (being sarcastic) facilitator and agency. I just read everything from the time you got Jake in Guatemala until now. I cannot believe they let this happen! I am so angry and sad for little Jake but at the same time I am so happy to read that he is home with your beautiful family is doing great! Praise the lord!