Sunday, April 20, 2008

Day Eight - Ukraine Trip, Part Two

Our day with Zina continues and we manage to get out side with her, Vika and most of the kids from her groupa. Zina wears her hair down all day and she tells us, "America, yes!" We understand that during the week, the girls pin it up and she is telling us that she wants to wear it down when she becomes an American. It's subtle things like that that Zina does that touch our hearts and keep us in utter amazement that no one wanted this child. God was waiting on all of us to bring us together...see, there's that God's Plan title showing up again!

I did mention that our friend and translator, Andrea, showed up later in the afternoon.While she understands most of everything we say and can speak a good number of words, it is the deeper, more understanding conversations we need help with. We needed to ask Zina if there were any pressing questions she had for us. She has no problem talking to us about things that concern her. She trusts us and in her mind, we are her parents. She asks about the "documents" again, as she puts it. We explain that we came to find out more too and to get people to help with the process. We told her that we were met with a favorable response and that the hope is to have her paperwork done by end of Summer and then wait the required 1 yr for international adoption. She has heard this before and is very happy that we are going through all the trouble for her. I tell her that no mater what, NO MATTER WHAT, we will never abandon her and we will come to see her. We hope the process is done in a timely manner, but we can't control such things. We will take care of her and Rimma's needs, we will never give up, and we will always be there for them. No tears this time, just all smiles as we explain difficult material. Last December, I was a basket case. Now we are family, no matter the distance, the governments, or what a piece of paper says. The biggest concern for both girls was the fact that they are worried that one of them will be adopted before the other, they don't want to be left behind to wait. Rimma asked Friday and Zina asked today. We told them both that the "plan" is to adopt them at the same time, but that we can't control that either, except to put off adoption of them until both are ready. We will cross that bridge...if we ever have to, at a later date. Both were OK for now with our answers.

We needed to have a conversation with Vika next, alone. Heidi took Vika off to the other side of the playground with the translator while Zina and I had some alone time. The Carmans asked us to have a conversation with Vika. Since this is a private matter between the Carmans and Vika, all I will say is that Heidi conveyed exactly what we were asked to say.

We spent some more time outside playing Ukrainian VB. Just a term we made up since most of the VB rules were tossed out the window. The VB area is paved with 50 yr old asphalt at the end of a make-shift soccer field. So every now and then, we dodged in coming shots on goal and the occasional out of control player. The kids playing soccer were of unusual age and size, so I'm not sure if they were orphans or not. There were some big guys there and it worries me that people can come and go without question. We were allowed to just walk on to the premises everyday and so was Andrea, our translator. Often times we would bump into several "former orphans" that had timed-out, moved on, and were just back visiting friends. Strange situation. Heidi went for bananas earlier in the day when we got back to the internat, and she saw Vika at the market, four blocks from the orpanage by herself. The caretakers sent her on an errand for frames for the cross-stitching art the kids make. She joined up with Heidi and went to the market with her, The caretaker did call on her cell phone to check up on her while Heidi was with her, so that's good. In their defense, the caretakers do monitor their kids, Kherson is a safe place, the market is only four blocks away, and only the older kids can go out like that.

At the end of the evening, we go back upstairs to the groupa day room to say our goodbyes. Again, no tears or sadness is present for any of us. She knows we have to go, but we will return. We get hugs and kisses and we wrap up the visit. She needs to head off for dinner and we need to get to the train station by 8pm. We still have to go by the House of Bible (more on that later) and get our bags. My last glimpse of Zina is her happily bouncing down the hall to dinner. Goodbye for now our sweet Ukrainian Princess!

Sasha (Alex) with AGAPE meets us at the House of Bible and delivers us to the train station for the overnight ride back to Kiev. We say our goodbyes and leave gifts for him and his beautiful wife, Vera. Vera was very instrumental with the director. It seems Sasha and her have a special relationship with him. It was reported somehow that Vera told him the Rog├ęs must adopt these girls. His heart was melted from then on and we enjoyed free reign. Sasha and Vera are Christians that could be enjoying a comfortable life in America, but God called them back to Ukraine to help orphans. More on them in a later blog, coming soon. May God bless them and their ministry.

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About Us

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Longmont, Colorado, United States
Heidi loves to play sand volleyball, sail and garden. Felix loves to fly at the local aeroclub, sail and fish.