Monday, April 25, 2011

On Friday we signed the lease!

Hello, everyone,
It was a huge leap of faith to make it from one coast to the other with the whole family without having even found a house--but on Friday we signed the lease on our new home. It was the first and only house we went to see--and we got it! Obviously God was behind everything. I had contacted the realtors / owners from CA, and they had asked me to e-mail them some info. In my e-mail I had emphasized much more who we are and the kind of family I have than my overly optimistic expectations and not very organized plans. I wrote about my kids, and about the two new little ones yet to come.

In my rental application there was a section open for additional comments--and I wrote that "I come from a family with the most impeccable, unblemished, immaculate records in every respect---except for my credit records." It did not matter: they had already made the decision that they wanted us in their family home.

We started our trip much later than anticipated, and it took us much longer than expected to complete it. Yet, God had decided that such house would be for us.

The owners told me they had rejected about 10 applicants. That used to be the wife's family home, and they were looking more at who the prospective occupants would be than at how solid their work history was. Otherwise, being self-employed with a large family, it could have taken me forever to find a house.

This home is in a 5-acre wooded area, and yet not far from  the center of the town. It has lots of amenities, such as a breakfast nook, an office, and a sunroom. The lower level is a whole different apartment, with its own living-room and kitchen. Needless to say, Catherine is extremely excited about that--but she deserves it, after having said good-bye to her parochial Young Adults group in CA to come with the family over 3000 miles away. She says that I do need her, and she would do no less for her younger brothers.

In the meantime, we need to wait until the house becomes available. We're having a not totally comfortable yet cozy Easter all together. It's the little rest that we needed, so that on Monday both Catherine and I will have renewed energies to look for additional sources of income in the light of the huge lot of impending adoption expenses.

Actually, once again,it was thanks to Catherine that the young ones had a memorable Easter. I will be very honest and admit that I'd have done it without Easter baskets this year. Yet, Catherine went to WalMart and bought the baskets for Thomas,Nicholas, and Stephen with her own money. She even bought two small items for Gerard and Warren.

I thought that Stephen would complain about the big inconvenience of being all squeezed in a motel room, but quite to the contrary, this is proving to be a really positive binding experience. There are some moments when he acts out and becomes impossible. Yet, although initially he may refuse to apologize, he ends up saying "I'm sorry" after some time. There are little details that show how very much he does want to belong. For instance, while still in CA, in the evening of the day when our household belongings had been loaded on the truck, Stephen placed himself where the T.V. set used to be, performed for his family audience, and said, "I'm a T.V." Thomas immediately followed, and said he was watching T.V. Stephen then replied, "I'm not a T.V. I'm a boy and a son." When not very comfortable with a van overloaded with those things that needed to come with us plus all the things that had not fit into the truck, he seemed to enjoy the whole adventure together, and to talk about "before, before, before I was in Bulgaria and you were not my mom--but now you are my mom." At one point, after having gotten upset about something and after saying he wanted to go back to Bulgaria, he told me, "Thank you for here." That could be developed as "thank you for being here." After misbehaving on our way to the Easter Vigil Mass to the point that we had to go back to the motel and go to Mass on Sunday morning, I was very upset, and he told me, "I don't want to do this to you." His first question on Easter Sunday was whether I was angry with him. After the Easter Mass he asked me if he had behaved well. Catherine was much more emphatic than me in praising him, and he was really happy.  Late this evening, before going to sleep, he asked me to seat for a moment next to him.

Catherine's 25th birthday is on Tuesday. Her only birthday request was to spend some time with all her brothers, to take them somewhere and to eat something with them. The only problem is that I don't even have funds for that. Moving expenses, security deposit, and impending adoption expenses add up to many thousands of dollars besides regular monthly expenses.  Yet, we know that God is on our side. He gave us more than enough signs showing He does want Maximilian and Philip to get home.

May the blessings of our Lord who died and resurrected for us be with you this Easter and always,

Lillian Godone-Maresca


Janie Brigantic said...

Dear Lillian,
I am so glad that you and your family arrived safely. What can I do to help you? Janie

JLH114 said...

Hi, I check in on your journey now and then and I see you are now in my little state of RI- welcome!! You should know that RI has excellent home support services for families with children with special needs. Regardless of your income, children with special needs may be eligible for HBTS (home based therapeutic services) and PASS (personal assistance and support services). I know you have older kids that are pitching in at home- they could be paid for providing such help through the PASS program! Look up your local CEDARR Center ( where they guide you through this process. I am a psychologist and consult for home services at United Cerebral Palsy/ UCP in Pawtucket- we work with kids with many different needs. Hope this is helpful!
Jessica Hopkins, PsyD


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