A few days before we were to take custody of Dylan, we received the difficult news that he was suffering from an infection in his throat and would not be released to us until he felt better. After lamenting the loss of our official "Gotcha Day," Bill and I resigned ourselves to continuing our daily visitation with Dylan and counting our lucky stars that he was getting the medical care he needed before we brought him to our apartment.
Now that our 15-day appeal period had expired, we were able to continue with the last few details needed to complete the adoption. First, we had to pick up Dylan's adoption certificate at the courthouse. Then we had to apply for a new birth certificate listing me and Bill as his parents. Once we had those documents, we'd be able to apply for his passport. We could not leave Kostanai and travel to Almaty (the former capital of
When we received our travel papers at the beginning of this process, our agency had warned us that government agencies work differently than they do here in the US, and that it would generally take longer to get certain paperwork than it normally would over here, so we should be prepared to be patient. That was all well and good on paper, but when you found yourself at the very end of the process and could see the light at the end of the tunnel after almost 3 months in-country, trying to be patient was - frankly - exhausting. We'd hoped to have Dylan's adoption certificate the day after our official custody date, but it wasn't ready. Without it, we couldn't get the rest of the documents. So we waited...
In the meantime, we continued our preparations to leave Kostanai. In a
Handing out these presents was a very moving experience for me. These women had taken care of Dylan almost from the moment he was born. There were too few of them for too many babies in each group room, but they knew and loved each and every one of those babies. More than once, during visitation, I would pass one of them in hallway and they would cover Dylan with kisses while he smiled wide at them. There is no doubt in my mind that he was very well cared for, and that he loved them in return.
All the caregivers expressed so much happiness that Dylan had found a home, but I could also see that they were sad to see him go. It struck me what a difficult job these women have, getting attached to these babies and having to see them go again and again. I am not sure I would have the strength to do the kind of job they do, but I thank God that women like them exist, because I owe them my son's well being during the first year of his life.