Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Eleven Months Old

Addison Altynai is 11 months old today. It is so hard for me to wrap my head around that fact, especially since I am prepared for her 1st birthday to pass us by too. A year ago we were excitedly waiting for our referral and Ansley and I had purchased her first baby blanket. I just never thought that the baby blanket would still be in a closet instead of being pulled around, slept with, cried on and loved by a precious baby girl. Hopefully next month there will be more to report.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What are we to do???

Aah, the roller coaster ride is far from over. Last week was a bad one, at first I was enthusiastic that things may be headed in the right direction. Our government was on board, the Dep MOE was willing (after a year of requests) to meet with our Consulate, the new MOE was finally in place and my husband took me on a surprise vacation :) God love him!!!. Certainly letters were coming and that is what they were telling us.... Yep, this is where you get to call me ignorant because I fell for the nonsense and lies again. Instead we have to wait for new recommendations from yet another new committee and those will not be made until March 20th. After that we will have to wait for Parliament to act on the recommendations and then of course, all the other delays that will follow. With that announcement we lost Addison's first birthday. Just that quick. What is wrong with these people and for that matter what is wrong with me??? I guess that is where the mother's love comes in. I want Addison home so badly that I find hope where ever I can get it and some days I bank too much on the thought that something has to give at some point. The harsh reality is that may be far from the truth.

Last week we were blessed with a 20 minute video of our little one. She is beautiful but her delays are absolutely heart breaking for me. At 10 months, she is functioning at a 3-4 month level. I know in my heart that at this point we could fix all of that with some good old fashion TLC. But here comes the hard part, what will she look like in six months, twelve months or beyond. What if we never get her home??And that is where my anger at this whole mess becomes pure sadness. I feel like I have a dying child - we have named her, held her, fought for her and have fell in love with her and yet, it seems that we are never going to get her home. The parallels with my patients that have terminal illnesses and the process that we, the doctors, and the families go through is uncanny. I feel like it is time to start having the serious conversations about the "end" and admitting defeat. Although, we want Addison home more than anything, I think that it time to really demand the truth and start asking the really hard questions.

If they, the Kyrgyz government, is never going to have the gumption to sign off on our cases then I wish that they would just tell us. The ongoing roller coaster is exhausting. It is like having an elephant on my heart. I can't escape it or get away from my worries. I have become consumed by this adoption - I spend countless hours, worrying, thinking/planning what I can do to help Addison and the other children. I can't do this indefinitely and my family can't tolerate me for much longer. I can't let another year be defined by this adoption mess yet I can't let go yet. So where does that leave me... for now, I continue to fight to have her home and wewill see what the next few months brings. After that I just don't know.

Keep the prayers coming. My fabulous adoption friends and all our precious children need them.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Just precious pictures...

Little Ms. Addison is not looking so little any more.

Look at those thighs! I love them!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

My Silence

Well, although our adoption blog has fallen silent over the last six weeks, it is not due to lack of events and effort on my end. In fact, I started more than one post but due to either my negative attitude, despair or just the inability to put my thoughts into type, those posts were never finalized. I am in a better place now and will take the time to update the blog on the events of the last 6 weeks.

First, Addison. She is now 9 months old and thanks to two visiting families, we are excited to report that she is the healthiest that we have seen her (Thank you Teresa and Karla!!!). Thank God! I don't know what has changed or what they are feeding her but she has skyrocketed from the 3% or below to the 50% for her weight. She still has serious developmental delays but I know that those will be overcome once we get her home. You will see in the picture that she is now bald, and not just her but the rest of the babies in her room too. This is not uncommon due to problems with lice, hygiene, ect... She is also apparently quiet social with lots of smiles, "talking" and even laughing which we were so happy to hear about. We have some videos coming our way and I can't wait to see it for myself. What a relief to see her looking so good!

Next the Kyrgyz side of things. The holidays came and went without any good news from Kyrgyzstan. That was not surprising because we had been warned that all would be quiet due to the holidays, but that by mid January we should see progress. The Kyrygz Ambassador met with the Kyrygz President in December and we were assured that adoptions would continue and that the pending cases would be processed on return from the Holidays. Of course, true to form, those letters still have yet to be signed. The good news, we think, is that as of January 23, the MOE and the Deputy MOE were relieved of their duties. Our hope is that with new leadership, and hopefully compassionate leadership, that we will see the pending adoptions finally be processed. Before the 23rd, I had resigned myself to the fact that there was a very, very good chance that we would never see Addison come home. Although I fear that the roller coaster ride is far from over at least now, there is some hope.

As for my last six weeks, I have been very busy trying to advocate for the medical needs of the orphans who's health conditions are continuing to deteriorate. To date, I have written over 30 letters to the powers that be including our Senators, Congressman, Department of State, the US Consulate in Bishkek, the Kyrygz Ambassador to the US, UNICEF, JCICS, CCAI and several congressional staffers for the Foreign Affairs committee and Human Rights committee. The responses have been few and far between however, I feel like I am slowly making an impact. I have gotten a lot more attention now that I am writing the letters as a pediatrician, on behalf of all of the waiting children, than I did when I was writing as a worried parent. The orphans, both those with parents waiting and those that are not eligible for adoption, are suffering due to overcrowding and the lack of personnel and resources to care for them. This is absolutely heart breaking so even if nothing comes of my efforts, at least I will feel like I did what I could for Addison and the rest of these precious children. Many of these orphans have truly become my patients and I can only imagine the relief I will feel as I see them come home and thrive in the loving arms of their new families. Now, I just have to keep praying and have faith that this journey will not be for naught and that we will be rewarded with children that will forever enrich our lives.