Adoption Journal – Part 8 – Russia 2007

The viewThe view out the window of Ilya’s (Luke’s) room

August 27, 2007

The PreTrial

All is going well.  Yesterday Matt napped while Emma and I had lunch in the snack bar in the hotel.  $20 for a small bowl of soup, 2 pieces of bread (they charge for each piece,) a side of mashed potatoes, a small juice and 2 ice creams.  Mind you, I’m not complaining, just observing.

Then we all slept from about 2-5:30pm and after that, walked through the market across the street.

At about 7:30 we went back to our room and read for a while, then Emma watched Parent Trap on one laptop and Matt and I watched Reds on the other laptop.  What a great movie. We went to sleep about midnight and woke at 3:30am.  Still off on the sleeping.  I went back to sleep maybe an hour later, but Matt ended up going for a 1 1/2 hour walk (after the sun rose.) Fortunately, Emma has been sleeping all through the night.

This morning we went to see Ilya at the orphanage again.

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We first met with the director/pediatrician, our interpreter, a doctor and a social worker who was there to observe us with Ilya.  They again went over all medical reports.  Emma sat on a chair behind us and they thought she was cute.  Then we went for 30 minutes to see Ilya.

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Another couple from Maryland was in there also seeing their child.  It was their 2nd trip.  They go to court tomorrow too.  We exchanged information thinking maybe someday our two boys might like to meet.

PreTrial Preparation

Next we had lunch at a pizza place and Andrei prepped us for the pre-trial.  He told us what they would ask and what we should say in response.  Things like why do you want to adopt?  Why Russia? Won’t your other children be jealous?  How will your extended family react to an adopted child?  Will the child be given equal inheritance? Won’t four children be alot to take care of? :)

The courtroom was full of women except for Matt

This is typical.  The judge, a different interpreter (Andrei couldn’t go because he had a conflict of interest,) our russian lawyer, the secretary and the DA.  They all want it to work, but they have to do their due diligence.  The judge was very serious.  Our interpreter said she was a good woman, just doing her job.

This is the only picture I have of our courtroom interpreter.  It is terribly out of focus, but I wanted to show you anyway.  She was a professor of literature at the University.  A very interesting woman.  As I look back, I cannot believe I didn’t take more pictures, but I also remember the intensity of this whole thing.  Pictures were definitely NOT on the radar screen.

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The pretrial took about 45 minutes.  Andrei took Emma to an internet cafe and had ice cream while we were in there.  Apparently tomorrow it will be similar but with more words and more officials (those are the words of our interpreter.)

They might waive our 10 day waiting period?  You’re kidding?

After the pretrial, we went out to get in the car and our lawyer ran out to us and said she thinks they will probably waive our 2 week waiting period.  We were quite shocked because they NEVER do that in this region.  We don’t know for sure, but Andrei says if the judge asked our lawyer to draw up a motion for it, that must mean she intends on doing it.  We won’t jump to conclusions though until tomorrow.

This rarely happens.

In the last year, the only other time this “10 day waiting period after the trial” has been waived was when the adoptive father and his new son had the same birthday AND it was on their court date so the judge did it for a birthday present. Matt thought maybe she was doing it because of professional courtesy because he is a lawyer, but we don’t know.  Or she might be doing it because she knows we have 2 other children waiting for us a world away.  Regardless, God has definitely got to be involved.  He is looking after the children I believe.  All four.

Inserting God into the Court System

Oh, I did get a little God into the court proceeding when they asked me if our children would be jealous or have problems with an adopted child.  I said we have always taught our kids that God gives us babies in two ways, biologically and through adoption, so no, I don’t believe there will be any problems.

When we were here in June and I brought up God in terms like that to the Minister of Education, they looked at me funny.  Then they asked “Do you believe in God?”  And I said, “Yes.”  They seemed slightly puzzled.  I’m really not sure what they thought, but it seemed to be an anomaly.

Back in the Baby Business

This afternoon we went to buy an infant car seat which we found out we MUST have on the flight back to the US, and baby food.  We are definitely back in the baby business.

Tired and going to bed early tonight.  Love you all!

Allison


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