Darcy Violetta Hogeland.
I know you have been dying to know her name and now we can tell you. We pass court on the 24th of September. 24 keeps popping up. February 24th is when I started the blog for our adoption in 2011. February 24th was Eva's first day home with us. And now, September 24 is when two orphange sisters became real forever sisters. When DV finally became our daughter.
Ok, so the name. You know I loved the name Darcy, but didn't love the meaning. It means Of the Dark One. But, Dale pointed out to me that she came from a very dark place. But she came OUT of it. To him, it is about her overcoming the darkness. While I was pondering this another friend emailed me and said the exact same thing. And I just really liked the name, so I was easy to sell on the new twist of the meaning. So her name isn't about the darkness of her past, it is about overcoming that dark place.
Court was much harder this time. The whole point of the super long extra 2.5 week wait is that we were waiting to see the judge we saw last time. I found out on the way to court that we would be seeing a different judge anyway. The facilitator didn't know who.
The prosecutor sat down with me before court and started grilling me. Mostly about money and house size. He looked at our photo book and told me our kitchen was small. It was hard not to laugh cause you could fit 3 of the average Ukrainian kitchens in our kitchen. I wanted to ask him how big his kitchen is. But I just smiled and told him that it is big enough for a family of 8.
Then in court the judge asked A LOT of questions about money. She even got out a pen and started adding up our expenses. Our facilitator reminded me later that, though, we make enough by the US government's standards and Ukraine's standards, most people who adopt make at least double what we do. And live in much bigger houses. So, they just usually see photo books with more impressive looking houses and budget sheets with much higher numbers.
I really wonder if it had been our first adoption if she would have allowed it. BUT, she was so impressed with the photos of Eva. She asked lots of questions about her and her health. She was a little concerned about homeschooling, but when I explained it she really seemed to like the idea. She really seemed very nice, just very serious and tougher.
Then the prosecutor asked me a couple more questions about why we wanted to adopt children with HIV and if how the language issue had gone before. I answered those and then the judge asked everyone to speak and state if they were for or against the adoption.
First, one of her nannies had come to represent the orphanage which super surprised me! She is very nice. I was glad to see her. She stated that DV had asked for a long time when a family would come for her. That she had always desperately wanted to be adopted. Talked about it a lot. When I came for her the nanny said DV was over the moon and ask everyday when I was coming. If I was late she would ask again and again if I was going to come. The nanny said that they asked DV if she wanted to be adopted by us and go to America and she said yes. It was hard not to cry as she spoke.
Then the social worker spoke and said they, also, were for the adoption. And the prosecutor then stated he was as well. Then the judge asked to look at the photo book (which now made me very nervous) and told us to leave while she deliberated. The other judge skipped this step, so I was very antsy.
Five minutes later she called us back in and stated she was granting the adoption. I couldn't hold back the tears. Even the judge got all choked up as she spoke. AND she ordered for
Dales' name to be on DV's new birth certificate even though he couldn't be there!! See? Tough judge lady had a super nice heart.
Then, because court started at 3:30 and I had to be at the airport at 5, we raced over to the airport, but got their with time to spare. My only regret is that I did not get to say goodbye to my friend Ana. So sad about that.
Then I flew to Kiev, took a shuttle to a hotel, slept for 5 hours, took the shuttle to the Kiev airport, flew to Germany, flew to Chicago, and finally landed in Birmingham only 8 minutes behind schedule!
I can not even describe seeing my children. They flung themselves at me. Seamus just sat right in my lap while everyone did a circle around me and we just sat there and hugged. Then I got to hug Dale and NURSE MY BABY!!!. I was so glad he latched. I have barely any milk. I hope he doesn't get frustrated.
I went to bed at about 8 and woke up about 3. I would have actually slept later, but Seamus woke me up. But not too bad considering in Ukraine those times were 4 am and 11am.
Today I am just going to enjoy my kids. I hate having one left behind. It is the strangest feeling to know she is now legally ours, not just in our hearts, and yet she is so far away. 8.5 days into the 10 day wait already. I want it to fly, but at the same time I want to soak up my time with my kids here.
I am booking tickets back today. I will be booking them for a week from today. Head spinning a little. But if I could do what I have already done, I can do what is in front of me.
Thank you guys so much for all the love and support. I am not letting out the sigh of relief until the 10 day wait is officially over, but we are so close. Thank you guys so much!