We are in shock.
We are angry at Satan.
We have a lot of work ahead of us.
In all her years of working with orphanage directors, our attorney has never met one who was so cold and detached as this woman. It is as if she is still stuck back in the Soviet era. She does not have the heart, the passion, to be doing this job. She doesn’t care if others come and help–all the less for her to have to do. In spite of all the arrangements that had been made, she was with another guest when we arrived, and was not ready for the appointment.
This gave me more time to pray.
By the time we got to see the director, she was obviously ill-at-ease. I did get to say and ask what I had hoped to, but I could not thank her for keeping Katerina alive. The words stuck in my throat, and that was before we got to see Katerina.
[This picture clearly shows the uncertain emotions I am feeling as I wait outside the door to Katie’s room, and the money belt I thought was well hidden around my waist. Oh well.]
In all her years of working with adoptions, our attorney has never seen a child who was in worse shape. She said that she didn’t want to scare me, but that I needed to know that sometimes children in poor condition die before they get home. She said that one of her other adoptive families recently lost a child in poor shape before they got to see him for the first time.
How thankful I am that God prepared me by guiding us to that blog about little Gabe. When the caregiver handed her to me, Katerina immediately showed that she was afraid by crying and making weak pushing motions toward my hands.
…trying desperately not to cry…
…Toni? Look at her…?
The caregiver said that she wanted to change her diaper, and our attorney asked if I may do it myself. I took more pictures than this, and am sending them to Dr. Strauss, with an appeal that he write a letter urging expedition. They will also go to the government officials we will ask for help, and to the USCIS officer with our I-800 application.
Whatever was left of my heart has been smashed up into little tiny bits and is crying out in pain.
Tiny little baby bird.
After I changed her diaper and clothes, I sat on a chair very still with Katerina facing outward where she was not forced to see my face.
I spoke her name over and over. On this trip, I am calling her by her birth name.
She slowly relaxed, and began to smile and laugh.
I told her over and over that I was her mama.
I crooned softly to her that she was my pretty girl, my precious jewel, and I was her mama.
She patted my hand with hers. Pat, pat, pat, just like Verity does.
She weighs so little that my lap has already forgotten the feel of her there.
I now know how it feels to hold a starving child.
We can look at her and see what kind of life she has lived. The damage that has been done was so unnecessary. So unnecessary.
She has spunk, she smiles, she responds, she is a person, she wants to live.
O God, have mercy on her and open the way for her to come home quickly. Please let us take care of her.
Satan, in the name of Jesus, you are not going to win this one.