Yes we had to decide on the spot this morning what her name was going to be and in the 10 minutes we had with her yesterday, we felt like Mia fit her better than the other choices. Plus we like that "Mia" means "my" and "Kareen" means "pure" . Both are fitting for her because she is now going to be OUR Kareen, not orphan Kareen and she is definitely pure!
So nothing like making a lifelong decision in a matter of seconds huh?! But then again things are moving so fast that we are getting use to this speed. So now that I had a decent night's sleep I will recap yesterday.
We left the capital city K, wednesday night at 7 pm and took the train through the night to her city where we arrived at 7 am. We got off the train and were met by our facilitator Angelina, a stunningly beautiful, classy lady, and her driver. We drove to our apartment which is on the campus of the university. It is like a dorm type apartment, we are told that the teachers live here. So the R.A. type lady in charge Aksana, said that our apartment wasn't ready yet so she would keep our luggage in her office until later that afternoon and she would open another room so us to take a quick shower and change. Angelina left for about 30 minutes and then sent our driver back for us and we met up with Angelina and Serge (another facilitator) to start the craziness. We literally did not stop for the next 10 hours. We went to a local office for our referral of the child, then to the regional office for a referral and some other permission slips required. Then all of the sudden they said "ok we are going to meet your child" So we show up at the orphanage and sit down with the director of the orphanage and he tells us that it is almost lunch time so we will meet the child first, and then they will go over her medical records and her history with us. The director left the room and we thought they were bringing her back in that room to meet us so as we sat their in tears, the director came back in and instead moved us into the darling playroom to wait for her. It was so surreal watching them carry her through those doors. I still feel like I was dreaming. I wish I could take pictures of the nurses/caregivers there. They are all dressed in old fashioned white doctor coats and the orphanage looked very nice. It is very large but we were told we can not take pictures of other children there or of the other staff or anything. Very strict rules there I guess.
The 10 minute meeting went so fast it felt like a blur. Next thing we knew they were wisking her off for lunch and her nap and we were taken into another room with the doctors. They told us that she was born premature (at about 36 weeks) and it was a very hard labor and that she had the cord wrapped around her neck at birth so she was placed in intensive care for about a month. During that time she was tested for down syndrome and was in the hospital for a few months. When the parents learned that she indeed had DS they gave up their rights and at 4 months old she was placed in the orphanage here. They said she was anemic at birth but it doesn't appear (to them) to be a problem anymore. The report they gave us about her heart was that she has a opal opening?? (small hole) in her heart but it doesn't require surgery (again all of this is being translated so we really won't know for sure until we are home). They reported that she is very healthy and that she hasn't been sick for a year. They said she is very mild tempered and mellow. She always helps the other kids when they drop their toys. She always helps clear the tables after meals. And she is very curious.
They told us her parents pay alimony for her and so they most likely gave her up because they could not give her a life here. It just breaks my heart for them!
Next we went in with the director and he told us we may visit, and then he changed and said "no not may, you NEED to visit" every day from 9-12 and from 4-6. They have a second lunch at 10 so if we want to bring her our own snacks instead of sending her in for that we can.
They told us she has been given vitamins and shots on a regular basis and that she gets therapy, speech therapy for sure, not sure what else.
So we could tell right away that they care about this little girl and they have taken care of her the best they could. I just wish we could speak their language to really understand and talk to them. We would so love to hear more about her and hear stories about her or be able to ask questions.
After we left the orphanage we went with our facilitators to a really nice lunch and then onto the notary to sign more paperwork. Angelina will then be filing all of these documents to petition for a court date so PRAY that comes quickly because we have learned that they WILL NOT waive the 10 day wait here anymore. When we signed the petition to adopt, Angelina pointed at it and said, "she will no longer be an orphan she will be your daughter"
We are getting use to running on one meal a day around here and don't have any food places close to our apartment so we are going to be very glad Kris packed his candy carryon!
It was a wild emotional amazing day and we can't wait to get to know her more!
We are working on getting video uploaded but we are having technical difficulty getting it to load correctly so we are still working on it. You will love seeing video!
Next up....pictures from our visits today! I will try and get them up before I go to bed!