Wednesday, August 11, 2010

After My Fifth Visit

Totally boyish and full of life
A little more about Plamen: he is decisive, temperamental, and a leader among the kids. Yet, it is obvious that he is sensitive and has a heart. He manages his wheelchair very well and very fast, and when with the other children he gets with it too close to the edge of the steps that lead to the front entrance. For the next few months until he's home, we're all going to have nightmares about those steps.

On a different thought, even without the use of his legs, he's so articulate, so nimble, and so vivacious that you tend to forget he's in a wheelchair.

At one point during the course of the visit, Plamen (or should I start calling him Kevin?) said that visits were over five days so that we could get used to each other, but then I'd leave, and when I came back, we'd need to get used to each other again. I assured him that we'd be thinking about him every day and praying to have him home, and that Catherine, Gerard, and Warren loved him the same--even without having seen him in person. As I repeated that we'd never forget about him, I touched the back of his right hand, and he got my hand and held it in his. We kept like that, holding hands--and then another little hand tried to reach out for mine.

That was Illiyan's left hand, as his wheelchair was parked right beside Plamen's in the room. For a priceless moment, we kept like that, each one of my hands holding one of their hands. Yes, Toni had spoken with the director, and she had brought Illiyan into the room as well. That boy is really adorable also. He's shy, but smart. He can give very intelligent answers, is loving and lovable, and has a smile that comes right our of his heart--and yet, except for when he smiles, his look tends to be very sad.

Illiyan's movements are more limited than Plamen's. He does have some control over his hands, though, and with consistent occupational and physical therapy a lot may be achieved.

Plamen agreed to give Illliyan a Spiderman puzzle that was too easy for him, and Illiyan kept on holding it, as if in disbelief that it could be for him. When the director thought about taking him out of the room, Illiyan said something that got forever imprinted in my heart: that if he needed to go, he was ready to go, but if he could stay, he'd rather stay.

Tears come to my eyes as I write this. I wish Illiyan could know that, independently of paperwork, home study, immigration approval, red tape, and visa issues, he already has not only a mom, but an entire family, with a Grandma, an older sister, and older brothers ready and willing not to leave one stone unturned to get him and Philip home as well.

1 comment:

schoolmother said...

Great to read about your journey so far!


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