Friday, July 29, 2005

July 29th

Up @ 7:30 for the gym. Alli's not feeling well enough to walk with Beth today so I head next door to break the news. Beth says she'll check on Alli around 10 to see if she wants to go for pastries or if she just wants Beth to pick them up for her. Alli's asleep as I leave @ 8.

Another good, tiring and quiet workout. I have never liked the idea of morning workouts - I am much more of a late night person than a morning person - but the 8 AM time frame has been good for both Bob and me, as it gives us something to look forward to three mornings each week, does not interfere with our baby home schedule and allows us to keep up with e-mail and the Blog in the afternoons.

The great ping-pong comeback is momentarily derailed as Bob wins the day 8-5 and extends his series lead to 103-95.

Back in the room, Alli reports she slept until 10, which is good because she had trouble falling asleep last night. She did not go with Beth, but good to her word, Beth brought pastries back for us! Alli and I have breakfast and do a little reading. I check next door on walking or taking the bus: Beth will join Alli and me on the bus, but Bob prefers to walk. The bussers meet at 12:30 and we're off....

We arrive @ 12:55 to find Bob waiting. Alli and I go to the infirmary, while Bob & Beth head to the boys' outside room. At the infirmary, Alli pokes her head in and asks for Aidan: He's on the changing table just inside the door, and the nurse asks us to wait in the hall until he's ready. After four or five minutes, the door opens and the nurse carries him out. Alli takes him and hugs him: She feels much better and he seems glad to see us. His color is good, he's alert and active. It's good to see him!

I go outside for Molly. She's in a walking chair in the shade just outside the outdoor room. Bob & Beth are keeping her company. Apparently, she'd been crying, but she seems happy to see her Daddy. Mama Bibigoul and I discuss Molly's wardrobe again - she's wearing striped bloomers over her diaper and a floppy beach hat with the strings looped under her chin (and tied atop her head because the strings are so long) - and agree we'd like to put a top on her today (it's not as warm as it has been, and the rug in the Marble Room gets a lot of traffic for her to be crawling around on it half naked for too many days). There are no adequate shirts outside, so we go to the inside room for a shirt before joining the others.

Fashion Alert: Aidan has a white onesie and a knit cap. He also has little girls' flowered under- pants with no diaper - curious given his present condition - and frilly white "Mary Jane" socks. Apparently, wardrobe selections are more limited in the infirmary than in the regular rooms. Molly is a vision in the aforementioned striped bloomers and a pair of striped socks - they don't match, of course - and the top selected looks like a button-up cabana shirt with a multi-hued print against a solid blue background. The floppy hat completes the look, and we snap a quick photo of our little sea cruiser. Alli wisely puts a diaper on Aidan - I'll spare the details, but suffice to say it came in handy later - and Molly loses the shirt and hat for play time.

Molly gets her juice bottle from Daddy today while Mommy administers liberal doses of TLC to her little boy. He seems to be himself, crawling around with the other kids, investigating and exploring, and Molly is quite content with her cool drink and the return of a pleasant breeze.

Olesya arrives and the air goes out of the room when she delivers two pieces of news. First, her doctor has ordered her to hospital on Monday: The doctor is not satisfied with the results from the battery of tests Olesya had earlier today. Olesya is not certain whether she will be admitted for more testing or for the duration of her pregnancy.

The next news is worse: The president of Kazakhstan is scheduled to visit Kostanai next week (Wed. through Fri.), and there is a chance his visit could prevent the "Visa Man" - apparently a high-ranking government/police official with obligations related to the visit - from signing the childrens' visas on Thursday as scheduled. If he cannot sign the papers as scheduled, we might have to wait another week for his signature, pushing our homecoming date to 8/19. Olesya is clearly upset - by her news and ours - and the four of us are dumbstruck. On the one hand, this poor woman looks like she could explode at any minute and, despite her pleasant personality and stoic Russian persona, she is undoubtedly more uncomfortable every day. At the same time, she is the lynchpin to all the tasks standing between us and our return home, and none of us is happy with the prospect of staying another week.

Bob and I asks several carefully-worded questions in an effort to get additional information/ more fully understand the situation (specifically the correlation between a state visit and the inability to sign four documents) and possibly divine some conceivable workaround(s), and Olesya assures us she will do everything she can to stay on schedule and prevent the delay. We are fearful, however, that in a country where the system is paramount (and, apparently in most cases, incontrovertible), and people like Olesya might push for an exception or deviation every now and then (but not often and not too hard), we don't know that she'll be inclined or able to do enough - or anything at all - from a hospital bed. We are not hopeful - but neither are we hopeless....

I find it difficult to adequately describe the feelings in the room as the news sinks in and the visit with the kids continues. Five adults who have come to know and like and care for one another must maintain some precarious balance between focusing on our own concerns and remaining compassionate regarding the needs and wishes of others. Olesya has a child to bring into the world and every effort must be made, every precaution taken to assure healthy delivery for mother and son. She is the consumate professional and has continued to work diligently on our behalf despite her condition and increasing discomfort over the past few weeks. For our part, we have children to bring back to and new lives to begin in our worlds, the culmination of a process years in the planning and trying and hoping long before the decision to adopt and the past sixteen months of paperwork, travel and everything we've experienced here. How disappointed can we be, how pushy in our questioning, how insistent that we remain on schedule - as if our mere insistence would be sufficient - before we appear so selfish as to be without compassion? Yet, why submit meekly to capriciousness when everything in our varied experiences - the adoption process notwithstanding - suggests there must be something that can be done? And all the while, the children are crawling among us, oblivious to our adult concerns and more in need of a song or a toy or a clean diaper or a wiped nose. We will put our faith in Olesya and know something more definite by the middle of next week....

Dana arrives @ 5:30 with soccer tickets for Sunday - we gave her the money last night and she stopped by the stadium on her way to work this morning - and we go to The Dom for dinner. After walking Dana 1/2-way home, we hit the Gros for snacks and beer and go to Bob & Beth's for movie night: We watch "The Mummy" on the portable DVD player's 4" x 6" screen. Back in our room, I fall asleep watching soccer and Alli does the same while reading. I wake and read a bit - John Irving's "A Widow for a Year" - before waking Alli to get ready for bed. We turn the lights out at 12:30 and it takes us both a little longer than usual to fall asleep. It's been a long, tough couple of days....


Sue and Grant said...

Our hearts are with you. If there is a way to make it work on time, you will find it. Have faith, these kids are meant to be raised by you in the U.S. Hugs to all of you.

Laura said...

so sorry about the past few days. When your kids are sick and you are worried about that any other problems are even harder to take. Even though it is normal for kids to be sick, it is the worst...and the worry doesn't really get easier or less as they get older!! You all have been so good at making this a positive are almost there!! Hang won't be much longer and you will be at home with everyone who loves you:)

Susie said...

Sorry to hear about the potential setback. Good thing you both are patient and rationale. As you mentioned, this has been a long time in the making so in the big scheme of things 1 week is a drop in the bucket. We'll pray for no delays and a safe return home!
Susie & Stephanie

Uncle Ron & Aunt 'Leen said...

We are sorry to hear about another potential delay in your schedule, but we are praying that a better resolution is achieved.

We know that your concern for Oleysa and her baby override all other considerations in your hearts, but it must be very hard to hear that another setback may occur. You must have been counting the days as we have been.

While I am sure the surroundings have been pleasant and the opportunity to experience a new culture and build strong relationships with your children, your friends and your guides has been wonderful, it must also have been difficult. By now the desire to be in your own home and getting on with the business of being a family must be nearly overwhelming.

We will continue to pray for a swift and happy resolution to all the concerns and a safe and pleasant return journey on schedule.

Lots of love,
Eileen & Ron