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Are You SURE You Want Him?
I was pretty nervous and didn't sleep very well and I woke up a couple of times during the night thinking that I heard a couple of girls giggling and talking in the next room. It turns out that Natasha and Alla were old friends who hadn't seen each other in several months and stayed up all night laughing and talking like a couple of school girls.
The following morning we hauled the two HUGE duffle bags down 3 flights of stairs to the car. Alla also had a shopping bag that contained all the gifts for the people we would be working with today. About 9 am we left the apartment and Alla told me we would go to pick up Tamara who is the orphans welfare officer for Shakhty and then go to the hospital to see Vasya.
We got to Tamara's office and Alla went in to get her while Lena and I waited by the car. I was amazed at the number of people who stopped and asked Lena about the tires on her car. They must have been nice tires for Russia, they just looked like regular tires to me. After several minutes Alla came back with Tamara who was a very nice lady who was as large as her smile. The four of us squeezed back into the car and off to the hospital.
When we got to the hospital, our translator, Olga, was there waiting for us. The five of us went into the hospital which was a sad looking place. It was very dark inside and it was badly in need of paint and new flooring. We went upstairs and down a hallway to the Director's office. I recognized her office from the photos we had of Vasya. The Director was waiting for us and after Alla introduced us she went down the hall to get Vasya.
As soon as the Director left, Alla asked me if I was excited and said, "You are about to meet your little boy!" I said, "Yes I am excited" and sat there nervously waiting. After a few minutes the Director returned carrying 14 month old Vasya and handed him to me. He was absolutely gorgeous. He was dressed in a baby blue outfit and it matched his beautiful blue eyes. He looked much better in person than in his photos. He had put on a little bit of weight but was still very pale. Vasya showed no expression on his face but his eyes were very alive and alert. His eyes seemed to be hiding his true personality. He didn't react at all to me or for that matter to anything or anybody in the room...just like on his video.
EVERYONE was watching our interaction. I gave Vasya a little stuffed dog that his Grandma sent to him. He took it and held it but you could tell he didn't seem to have any interest in it. After a couple of minutes, Alla asked me what I thought of him and if I wanted him to be my son, did we want to adopt him. My reply was, "YES, he is beautiful, I want him." A few minutes later, Alla took him and said she would hold him while Lena and I went down to get the two HUGE duffle bags.
When we got back with the two HUGE duffle bags, after dragging them up their last flight of stairs, Tamara and Olga were finalizing the application for us to adopt Vasya and the Director was playing with Vasya. The Directors eyes about popped out of her head when she saw us come in with the donations. She handed Vasya to me and went to look in the bags. She was very surprised by the amount of clothing and toys we brought and kept asking Alla how many families had donated everything. Alla told her that the donations were just from us. Her eyes teared up and she was so happy.
Olga called me over to the desk and had me sign the application for adoption and said we were ready. Alla asked me if I was SURE I wanted him and I said "YES!" and then she told me it was time to go to the court......
It was now about 10 am. This time there were 5 of us in Lena's teeny car. We squeezed in and off to the courthouse we went. It was quite a ride with all of us crammed in the car dodging enormous pot holes and other crazy drivers. I thought the roads in Rostov were bad but they were nothing like the roads in Shakhty.
We pulled up in front of a drab brick building and Alla told me that this was the court. Tamara, Olga, and I went upstairs to the (you guessed it) third floor and Tamara went into the judges office while Olga and I waited out in the hallway. About 30 minutes later Tamara stuck her head out the door and told us it was our turn to come in. The judge looked over our papers for 5 or 10 minutes and Tamara and the judge discussed Vasya's birth situation and how no one in Russia had shown an interest in him. The judge then asked me if I had seen him and if I wanted to adopt him. Then she asked if I thought Sandy would want to adopt him and since we already had one child, would we be able to care for him. I answered yes to all the questions and that was it. No courtroom, no stressful hearing, just a short meeting in the judges office and it was over. The judge said she would approve the adoption and I signed a couple more papers.
I thanked the judge and Olga and I went outside to wait for the court clerk to type up and finalize all the papers. Alla and Lena in the meantime had gone shopping and when we went down to the car, there were 4 bottles of champagne. Alla proceeded to ask me again (with a smile on her face) "Are you SURE you really want him?" I was wondering why in the world she kept asking me that so many times. I said, "YES!". We were off to the Registrar's office at about 11:30. There we needed to get his adoption certificate and new birth certificate.
After a few minutes wait the Registrar comes in with the certificates and three signature books. After I signed all the books the Registrar handed me the certificates and Olga told me that it is all done, Kyle Vasya Roberts is now my son. Alla told me before we could go get Vasya, Tamara had to finish some paperwork and it would be a couple of hours. We dropped Tamara off at her office with the paperwork and we went back to Natasha and Alexanders to have lunch and champagne.
I called Sandy from the host family's house to tell her that everything went well. It was 2:30 am in Washington. My first words were, "It's a boy!" She was very relieved to hear that things were going great. We went back to the hospital around 3 to get Kyle Vasya.
When the Director brought Vasya in it looked like he had been woke up from a nap and he was a bit cranky. Lena and I stripped him of his orphanage duds including his diaper and got him dressed in his Little Big Dogs jumper (over his undershirt of course with very approving looks from the Director) and put his coat on which was warm and had a hood (which the Director also approved of). The Director took him back down the hall to say goodbye to all of his nurses. She handed him back to me and I put him on the floor and held his hands and we walked off to the stairwell together.
We never looked back.
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