We are in country now visiting Sydney and Lucien for those of you who did not know already.
We are loving every moment of it, discovering new ways to make them laugh, smile, and learning their personalities.
We have been here since June 6th and so it is coming up on a month now.
This is the longest I have ever been away from my children.
However, we thought it would be a wonderful time for them to have a chance to spend time with their bio dad. He normally has to travel a lot for his work so they only see him maybe once a month for a weekend. With our 15year old having type 1 diabetes, and our 13 year old having severe asthma, we thought it was best to leave them with an adult who could take care of them if there was a medical emergency. Normally, it would not have been possible for their dad to watch them. But, he decided that he should try to find work closer to the kids as he was "missing out on their lives" and he didn't want to miss anything else. So, he up and quit his job and checked into a hotel in our town so he could find work. However, he did not find it as quickly as he had hoped and was running out of money. We thought this would help everyone. Since he could not afford to pay child support since he was not working, and he needed a place to stay, and we needed someone to watch the kids, and after all he IS their bio father, what better than for him to watch them right?
So, that was the deal. We bought several weeks of groceries and told him that if they needed more money for food to let us know and we would make sure they had money for that. He would have free internet, a free place to stay, free cable, free lodging, and he would have several weeks to be able to spend time with the kids he said he was really missing. We left the insurance cards in case they needed more meds or needed to go to the doctors while we were gone. We kissed the kids goodbye and headed out the door, feeling comfortable with him watching the kids
Two days after we left they had a nice BBQ on the grill out back and everything seemed to be going ok. A week after we left we got a frantic message from our children. Something happened, they were not sure what, but for some reason their dad was upset saying they did not want him there and so he was leaving. WHAT???? He said that they were no longer his children and he walked out.
Ok, WHAT??? This is a guy who was in the Army. Who should know about being responsible. Who was a drill sargent, who was a Green Barret for crying out loud!! I frantically got ahold of one of our good friends who my daughter babysits for and asked her if the kids could stay with her for a few nights and explained what happened all the while trying to figure out what in the world we were going to do. We were beside ourselves with stress, feeling sick, wanting to be by our children's side to comfort them, and wanting to be in the states pressing every single charge you could name against him for leaving them like that. Ok, I Get that Teenagers are not all over you like they are when they are 4, thinking you are the most wonderful thing in the world, I get that teenagers want to spend more time with their friends sometimes than they do with their parents, but that does NOT mean you can say they dont want you there and just LEAVE!!!
Since we had already talked with their dad about watching them, we did not figure we would have any extra childcare costs. But here we were faced with two teenagers who have now had to go stay with our friend because their dad walked out on them. For most people doing an international adoption, if they are going to have extra people fly with them to help them get home with their children, or if they will need to fly someone in to take care of their children at home, that all gets added in to the adoption costs. We did not figure on doing that and in fact had just planned on me staying and flying back with both Sydney and Lucien on my own to save money.
But you can only ask your friend to keep your children for a little while so we had to figure something else out. We did the only thing we could think of and called our second oldest who lives several states away. She was willing to come help out, but we would have to pay for her to fly to get there and get back home, in addition to her lost wages from her job. She is newly married and just starting out so she could not afford to just take time off without pay.
So we agreed, what else could we do? And we flew her on soonest flight we could to get her to watch the kids.
With the extra added costs, we no longer have the money to fly me or Sydney and Lucien home. We had to use that money to make sure our children at home were safe and taken care of. We have been praying a lot and are trusting that the Lord will provide and that by the time we are ready to go home, our FSP will have gone up to cover our flights.
In the mean time, we visited our beautiful little one every day at their orphanages and could not be more in love.
On Wednesday, we had court....
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Mark is now on his way back home, and I will remain here while we finish up some paperwork, work on getting Visas, and Passports and those kinds of things. And then hopefully, in about two weeks(providing the money is in the FSP to cover it) I will be flying home with Veronika and Gavyn.
I will do my best to keep you updated with everything and not be so neglectful of this blog.