After two years of running around, gathering documents, pulling our hair out and bending over backwards to accomodate each office worker in what felt like every region of the country... we were finally able to apply for our kid's visas!
I don't know what I was expecting. A big 'Congratulations' or a surreal feeling of happiness? It was just so non-climactic.
After three days of Doctor's visits, we were finally able to go to our big appointment at the Embassy. The lady told us that there were two families in front of us and we may have to wait a long time. So we gathered all the magazines and books we could and got comfortable for our long wait. After about five minutes they called us up for the oath. First for the kids. 'Raise your right hand... nope, your other right hand!' Then the lady said something in Ukrainian and waited (I'm guessing for the kids to say 'I swear') which they finally did.
Then she asked them to go sit down. Weird, no questions, nothing.
I had prepared them for lots of questioning.
Next it was our turn in English to swear to tell the truth in our interview. Which Matt and I gladly swore to tell the whole truth.
Okay, her first question: here we go, I thought, yes, finally I get to share all about this crazy experience with the Embassy... for the record!
"Okay, Mr. and Mrs. Grinn, how long have you been in the country for the adoption?" So I began...
"Well, we have lived here almost eight years, but...."
She cut me off.
"Okay, go sit down please your visas will be ready within the hour." Huh?
So easy? Wait a minute, I have so much more to say! I ask her, "Is that all?" "Yes, it's mostly paper work."
So we sit back down to wait out the full hour.
Ten minutes later we hear "Grinn Family to window 7 please, Grinn Family to window 7." At this point Matt and the boys had left to go for a walk thinking we had an entire hour to wait. (Remember there were two other families still waiting in front of us!)
So Tanya ran outside to get Matt and the boys and they hurried up to the window.
"Here you go." They proceeded to hand us all the passports with their US visas already stamped and ready to go! We had only been there a total of 20 minutes! It was so fast.
While this was all taking place, about 25 young Ukrainian citizens walked passed us for their interviews to try and get a visa to the US. Their faces filled with fear and hope all mixed together. I looked down at our kid's passports and marveled. Two of the three still have not even been on an airplane. They have no clue what this means. Watch out America!