Thursday, April 16, 2009

Great Visit!

Today we were able to visit the orphanage. Victoria was very shy at first. Her caretaker came in the visiting room with her and gave me tons of information. This was mostly about habits (eating, sleeping), moods, personality, disposition and so forth. I was told she speaks well and is a leader among her group, as she lets the others know what they should be doing and when they are doing something they should not be! The orphanage director came in, talked for a while and two different doctors came in to provide information as well.

It took Victoria about a half hour to warm up to me, which I expected. I have not seen her for 6 months. Lana told her that she needed to play because we had to leave soon. Victoria began to cry at this, because she did not want us to leave. We brought a toy cell phone, which she loved. I also brought a purse with gloves, a necklace and hair scrunchy (which she wore as a bracelet). She enjoyed the purse and gloves, and put her cell phone in her purse. We began to play ball, and she was just not letting go of these items. She mostly kicked the ball to me because her hands were full. She really began to relax, talk, show me things, laugh, and have fun!

It seemed too quickly my time was up with her for today. That was hard because we were told we should take the things we brought for her. If we didn’t, they would be gone. She really did not want to give the phone back. I promised her I would be back and with the phone. Apparently, the toy phones are a rare item. The caretaker explained that there are two that the children play with and if a child gets a hold of one, they will usually hide it from the others.

Her mood completely changed when they told her we were leaving. It made me sad and I could tell she was sad and very unsure. They told her I could walk back with her where she was to join her group. She grabbed my finger, pulled me along and was eager for her friends to see me. When we entered the room, she sat on a chair among the other children (about 10 or so the same age as Victoria). Several of them started waving at me. Victoria stood up, gesturing for them to stop and telling them in Russian “my mama, my mama”. With that, she came running over to me and gave me a great big hug! She ran back to her chair and proceeded to run into my arms a couple more times for a big hug! She really is sweet, but I suppose not willing to share me with her friends today. It really was a great visit!

We returned to the hotel, had lunch and walked along the shore of the Sea of Japan and to the market. Dylan would have enjoyed the walk, there were lots of clams and oysters on the shore (of course Dylan and I have been texting most of the afternoon). Shortly after we returned to the hotel, Lana called for me to meet her in “The White Rabbit” (sort of like a TV/game room here at the hotel) to discuss court. Apparently, she thinks I don’t talk much because she indicated that I need to talk a lot during court. I asked if she would be interpreting for me. She said that she would. I told her that I would just babble on and she could tell the judge whatever she saw fit…haha…sounded like a good idea to me!

Court is at 10:00 am tomorrow. I will be picked up at 8:45. I did find out this evening the social worker for this orphanage will not allow the children to stay with the parents until after the 10 day wait. Another family had court today and this was the situation. Irina and Lana both said they will continue to work on this, but at this point she will not be able to stay with me. I will be able to visit her though. Hopefully this will change. Oh, and since my last visit, she has had chicken pox and they cut her beautiful hair.