Monday, May 31, 2010

We got I-800A approval!!! Part I - Finally I'm talking about our new little one

As you can see, except for the button that eventually refers you to the Reece's Rainbow page, up to now I never posted anything about our current adoption steps. It is not because this adoption is in any way, shape, or form less present in our lives. On the contrary, that bright and brave little boy waiting in a wheelchair in Bulgaria is constantly in our minds, in our hearts, and in our shared prayers. He is with us in our dreams. He is our first thought as we open our eyes every morning, and our closing thought as we go to bed every night. He is with us at our table, in our work or studies, in our everyday activities, at home and everywhere we go. Yet, after Thomas and Nicholas' very successful adoptions, we had some very painful and financially disastrous experiences trying to adopt again. That's why this time I had decided to withhold all details until the process was really "going". And, as you all know, nothing can be really moving forward in any meaningful way before having US CIS approval. Now USCIS I797 Approval Notice is part of our almost complete dossier!!! So, it's time to start talking (or writing, actually)!!!

I'll start by how we came to know about Plamen. I will clarify that this time I intend to keep on thinking about him with his original name until I am officially asked about his new forever name. Still my password for one of my e-mail accounts includes a J for Jonathan--the third little boy in Haiti who in the end never came home. We had immediately named a couple of other little ones, and things did not work out as expected either. No, this time I will not give Plamen any other name until he is 100% mine. I'm just rumbling. I'll go back to how I first learned about him. Someone had posted about a boy with "very special special needs" listed in Reece's Rainbow under Other Angels. I clicked on the link, and unfortunately, that precious boy had leukemia, even though, thanks God, in remission. I kept on scrolling down a couple of other listings--and then suddenly a pair of sad yet noble eyes from a profile picture met mine. That set of eyes clearly shows that there is something really special in Plamen--not in the sense of "special needs", but in the sense of "special person", special human being. And, due to his spina bifida, he faces a serious physical challenge, exactly as we were looking for in the new little one to join our family. As for my children and my mom, the feeling was shared and unanimous.After making sure that he has a normal life expectancy, formally committing to him was the easiest thing in the world.

I was delighted to learn from Andrea, at Reece's Rainbow, that the agency would be About A Child. A couple of times before, and for absolutely no monetary interest at all, through someone who knew someone, I had been put in contact with Victoria, and she had offered and given some valuable information regarding two prospective adoptions from Eastern Europe that had not gone through. Even though in both cases there had been different agencies handling those intended adoptions, Victoria had looked up something and given me some feedback out of her good will, just in order to help. And Antonia (Toni) Vladimirova could not be better either.For most of those people who may read this blog, they are all very well-known and very highly regarded. Yet, I will clarify that Toni is the Bulgarian attorney and director of the Dreams Foundation, the Hague-accredited organization there working together with Hague-accredited About A Child agency in U.S. Toni, Victoria, and Carla are trustworthy, caring, kind, and willing to help every step of the way. Carla works with Victoria, and is the case manager for the Bulgarian adoptions.

Having a new home study done with Heartsent was really a pleasure as well. Sybil did an awesome job as the case manager for that agency, and Rose wrote a beautiful report, which was signed on February 2, 2010.

If you believe in miracles and in the life everlasting, and are ready to shed a few tears, please read Part II.

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