Pre-court & Going it Alone

(Continued from 2 weeks ago...)


After our 15-day mandatory waiting period was up, Bill & I were assigned a pre-court day for the beginning of March. During this meeting, we were to meet with the judge, the director of the Baby House and, and a custody officer from the Department of Education (the entity that regulates adoptions in Kazakhstan) to verify Dylan's adoptability and establish our official court date.


Although the pre-court hearing is more of a formality, I was beyond nervous about it. My whole body shook as we walked up the courthouse steps, and once we were in the judge's chambers I thought for sure I would have to bolt from the room and go to the bathroom to throw up. These women held our fate in their hands. If one of them decided that there was one sentence out of place in our paperwork, or that not all of Dylan's paperwork was on file, our petition to adopt would be denied and we would have lost our son. I couldn't bear the thought.


Of course, it turns out that the meeting was fairly painless. The judge asked us a few simple questions about ourselves--how long we'd been married, why were we adopting, why Kazakhstan, etc. Then she asked about Dylan--whether we were bonding with him, whether we thought he liked us, whether we were sure we wanted to pursue his adoption. Afterwards, she asked the director of the Baby House a few questions about Dylan's adoptability (health, legal status, and so forth), and then she scheduled the main court hearing for three weeks later, at the end of March.  I cannot tell you how relieved I was when it was all over!



The happy soon-to-be family

Now reality set in, though. Bill and I had been in Kostanai close to a month, and the truth of the matter was that we could not afford to both stay there for the duration of the adoption. We were lucky enough that Bill works independently and was able to do a lot from his computer, but he needed to return home and work. Originally, I had planned to travel back with him after pre-court, but after meeting Dylan there was no way I was leaving Kazakhstan without him, so we made the tough decision that Bill would go home for two and a half weeks while I remained in Kostanai with Dylan.


Those weeks were very lonely for me. Although our in-country staff was fantastic and I got to spend time with them and the other adoptive family that was there, the truth of the matter was that I spent most of my days alone in the apartment, reading books & watching DVDs (including Ugly Betty Season 1, which the previous family had left and which I had scoffed at upon seeing. Let me tell you, I got hooked!).


I could tell that Dylan also felt Bill's absence and missed his dad. The first few days of visitation after Bill returned home, Dylan would greet me with a big smile and then look around the room with a confused look on his face, looking for his dad. We quickly settled into a new routine just the two of us, though, and continued to bond wonderfully.



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A self-portrait during one of my visitations alone

Bill returned to Kazakhstan two days before we were to go to court. Dylan's face just lit up as Bill took him into his arms during his first visitation back. It was a very happy family reunion! I was very glad to see my husband again, and to have his calming strength around me, as I was already FREAKING OUT about court...




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  • I remember this like it was yesterday :-) I don't know how you did it; you were so brave! BTW, I had no idea that you got hooked with Ugly Betty - Too funny!

  • In reply to NinaGoyco:

    I know, I didn't tell a soul! It was my dirty little secret, hahaha! :-)

  • Fuimos muchos los que estuvimos preocupados por tu estadia en Khaz, pero gracias a Dios todo salio como tu lo deseabas. Valio el sacrificio.

  • In reply to Valmir:

    Definitivamente que si!

  • Ahora que leo tu relato con calma, paso a paso, te admiro mas y le doy gracias al Creador por darnos ese Diamante(Dylan) que

  • In reply to Valmir:

    Que bonitas palabras, gracias! :-)

  • The pictures in this entry show what an amazing story this is! (In addition to your narrative, Khadine!)

  • In reply to kathikubal:

    Thanks, Kathi! These are actually two of my favorite pics of our time in Kaz.

  • In reply to kathikubal:

    Thanks, Anita! As I wrote to Kathi above, these pics are two of my favorites. The self-portrait with Dylan sleeping turned out much better than I could have ever anticipated. I'm glad you're liking the story, too! :-)

  • In reply to kathikubal:

    Amazing story. How can we forget, we were all so worried for you guys.
    Can't believe how time flies!! He's so tiny in those pictures!
    Give Dylan a big hug for us.

  • In reply to Jadit:

    I know, he was such a little peanut! Hard to believe he was ever that small. Thanks for your comment!

  • In reply to Jadit:

    Hola Khadine, me imagino debe de haber sido una experiencia muy interesante para ustedes dos, asi como para el resto de la familia que debe haber estado muy preocupada, uno nunca sabe lo que va a encontrar, pero al fin y al cabo lograron lo que querian gracias al Senor y de verdad que valio la pena pasar por todo, el Senor siempre nos lleva por situaciones que no comprendemos al principio y luego con el tiempo nos damos cuenta el porque de las cosas y que siempre lo que nos sucede es por alguna razon, asi es que crecemos y maduramos. Te felicito por tu columna, siempre la leo, esta muy interesante. Abrazos, Marta Matos

  • In reply to martamatos:

    Que mensaje tan bonito, Marta, gracias por comentar! Me alegro mucho oir de ti y me alegro que te este gustando el blog. :-)

  • In reply to Jadit:

    Wow, just got goose bumps while reading, and several tears while finishing up with the comments. Hopefully I'll someday get to meet this great little treasure of yours. Congrats on the column, I get more hooked up as the week's go by! Say hi to Bill.

  • In reply to camoll:

    Glad you're enjoying it!

  • In reply to camoll:

    Ok, so now you've go ME in tears. I feel the emotion pouring from this entry. The excitement, fear, anticipation, loneliness, love... all of it!

    I think the pure innocence of the picture with Dylan, looking like an angel, laying on your chest got me - the tears started flowing - he's molded to your body, as if you'd always been ONE with you.

    You certainly were his mommy, even then before the papers were signed.

  • In reply to camoll:

    I meant to say... "as if HE'D always been ONE with you."

  • In reply to llutarewych:

    Awww, thanks Laura, what a nice comment from you! I'm glad you liked the entry. And you're right, I was his mommy, from the minute I laid eyes on him. How can you not fall in love wih such a cute little guy???

  • In reply to llutarewych:

    And speaking of typos, of course I mean, how could I not fall in love with such a cute little guy? :-)

  • In reply to llutarewych:

    A picture is worth a thousand words!

  • In reply to emmabradshaw:

    Glad you like it! :-)

  • What a great story! You really have me hooked! I can't wait to read more. I LOVE the photos you posted with this entry. So beautiful. Dylan asleep in your arms...just so...BEAUTIFUL!

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