Our SDA Appointment – We received our referral!

Today was a very big day for our adoption.  We had our appointment with the government regarding available children that we could adopt.  Scott and I have read many blogs and talked to other adoptive parents, so we kind of knew what to expect, even though everyone’s appointment is different.

Yesterday Serge called us and told us to be ready at 9:00 am this morning and someone would pick us up at our apartment.  I hardly slept at all last night because I was excited about the appointment, and nervous that we would oversleep because we were using Scott’s iPod Alarm Clock App, which hasn’t worked for the previous two times we tried to use it.  Luckily we woke up and got ready on time.  We had breakfast and prayed for the day.  We also packed our luggage in case we needed to leave immediately after the appointment.

So then we waited for the driver.  And waited.  And waited.  Our case manager Ludmilla had told us the previous day not to worry about transportation and that they have never missed an appointment.  So, we continued to wait.  It soon became 9:30 am, with no word from our driver.  The facilitator had given us a Ukrainian cell phone to use, but the dumb thing had powered off and now wanted a password to turn on.  So, we had no way of communicating.  So we waited. The clock turned 10:00 am and ticked away to 10:15 am.  We googled the address of the government building and realized that we were within a few miles of it, but had no clue what to do.

We finally made the decision to call the CWA emergency hotline.  Please keep in mind that it was about 3:30 am in the states.  Someone answered right away and transferred us to Ludmilla.  We felt really bad for bothering Ludmilla, but we didn’t know what else to do.  She reassured us that Serge probably had a plan, but she didn’t have any way to get ahold of him.  She also said that if we missed our appointment, Serge would likely be able to reschedule.  Boy were we nervous!

Finally at 10:45 am (15 minutes before our appointment) Niko runs to the door of our apartment and we literally run down the stairs and outside the building.  He is frantically looking around the corners of the streets for something and we run back into the apartment parking lot.  He sees a taxi parked there and shouts an address to the driver and tells us to pay him 30 ghrinava.  He slams the door shut and off we go.  By ourselves.  In a taxi.  Less than 10 minutes before our appointment.  In New-York city type of traffic.

We rolled up to the SDA building right around 11:00 am.  We got out of the taxi and saw another American family who ran us into the building where Serge was waiting.  This was probably about 11:05.  Serge talked to us about how the process would go and we gave him a couple packs of his favorite cigarettes that are only sold in the US.  He laughed.

Inside of the SDA building is a blue stairwell with wrought iron railing.   There were many families and facilitators waiting in the stairwell.  They called our name right away and we sat down in an office with a younger lady with curly hair.  She pulled our dossier out of a folder.  I didn’t really expect to see that thing again!  She asked us to tell her about ourselves and Serge interpreted.

Then the appointment got hard.  We knew what was going to happen next, but we really hoped we wouldn’t have to go through it.  She pulled out the blue binder and the red binder.  These binders are full of children who have severe health issues.  We were told by our agency just to look at the profiles, but to not say anything.  So we did just that.  We shook our heads no when we got to the end.  She left the children’s pictures on the table and my heart really broke for each child.

At this point, Serge started talking in Russian to the lady.  This continued for about 15 minutes while Scott and I sat there on the couch and pretended like we knew what was going on.  There were four ladies in the office and it seemed like he had a good relationship with them.  I could only imagine what the conversation was that was unfolding before us.  It seemed like Serge was trying to persuade the lady of something.  All of a sudden the door opens up and Niko (seriously this man just shows up places) hands Serge a black folder that is all taped up.

Serge opened the folder and they all laughed about some paper that was included in it.  At some point, the lady got up and left the room and came back with a red folder.  She held it for a long time and then all of a sudden she opened it and pulled out a profile of a child.

This was our referral child.  Scott and I were filled with all sorts of emotions.  After rushing around that morning and sitting through the Russian conversation, suddenly we are looking eye to eye with this child whom we prayed months for.  There were two pictures on the profile, one baby picture and one from a few months ago.  Truly a little angel.  Scott and I started to tear up and we felt an immediate attraction to this child.

We said “dah, dah” (yes, yes) to the lady and “spa see bah” (thank you).  We were ushered out of the office and the appointment was done.  It was about 20 minutes and we didn’t even take our jackets off.  What an emotional and important 20 minutes of our lives!

Unfortunately we cannot give any information on this child until we officially accept the referral, which will likely be on Monday, our second wedding anniversary!  We will leave Kiev on Saturday and travel by train to the child’s region.

We do not have ANY reservations on accepting this child with the information that we have now.  We can see God at work through this process in picking out the right child for us, and we cannot begin to explain the peace that we feel throughout each step.  In human terms, we should be very anxious about working with the government, the meetings, and in general just being in a foreign country with a foreign language.  God is in control.

Here is a picture of the proud parents to be after the appointment:


7 responses to “Our SDA Appointment – We received our referral!”

  1. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    Hey Guys!!! So this is what we have to expect!!! Make sure you keep us posted on everything. I am so excited for hopefully Monday for you to meet your long awaited child!!! I have a question. Our bank will only give us new $50.00’s because in Italy they are having a problem with fraudulent 100.00’s. Can you ask Serge if that will be ok? We are checking back at least 2x a day to see how things are going!!!

  2. Scott Avatar

    This is Lindsey. Thanks for the nice comment. We mostly brought 100’s because it makes the stack smaller. You exchange money by going to a bank window and hand the cash to a person, so I’m sure any denomination would be fine.

  3. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    Wow, how different. We were only shown a total of 2 files at our appointment- one a boy, 1 a girl–Hannah. I guess we could have asked for more, but we knew instantly that Hannah was ours!
    My heart broke when you mentioned those first folders…those are my kind of folders!!! Maybe someday soon! 🙂
    I am so bummed, I was hoping to know where you were headed…. Guess I’ll wait and try to be patient!!!

    Cara and Doug
    Enjoy the train ride! I love the train in Ukraine!

  4. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    I’m so excited. 🙂 Lindsey’s blog post made me cry! God is blessing you abundantly!


  5. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    Wow. What a day! ‘Very excited for you two.


  6. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    Great post! I started out laughing and ended up crying. I am so excited for you guys!!

    Kim & Andy

  7. Family & Friends Avatar
    Family & Friends

    Lindsey and Scott, you have truely been blessed, God is one step ahead of you all the way. Maybe Niko is an angel on earth, your angel. Dad and I are excited for you both, I will show this post to Dad, and cry again when he reads it …. what a wonderful time …. we LOVE you, Mom and Dad, Grandma and PapPap ….