Monday, October 7, 2019

One Year !!

Just over two years ago, my husband uttered the words "why don't WE adopt him?".  

A few days later, we contacted the necessary agencies, and committed to adopt Sealey.  

18 months ago, we found out that Sealey had died. 

 A few days later, we chose "Vijay" as our new son - and not long after that, we also chose "Athens".  They were both 10 years old at the time.

In July 2018, we flew over to meet both boys, and officially committed to adopting them, after spending about an hour with them.

A month later, we flew back to Ukraine for court, and were able to visit them a few times again...

...and a month after that, we flew back again for the pick up trip. 

We broke them out of the institution on September 26th 2018 !!

- and after a few days of medicals and Embassy appointments, we flew home with them on October 6th 2018 

The flights home went fairly smoothly, all things considered.  I only had to change one poopy diaper on one plane on one screaming child, which was all kinds of fun ;)  I managed to get their meals prepared on various planes and at airports, and there were only a couple of meltdowns.  Viktor absolutely hated the airports, and screamed whenever we had to wait to go through security.  At EVERY checkpoint, we were told the boys had to come out of their strollers - and at every check point, we successfully got the point across that they would NOT come out of their strollers.  I think we were only in danger of being arrested at one point, when Randall was yelling back at a German security man LOL
All in all, though, the flights/airports were OK - we survived, and they weren't as bad as I had expected !

We actually spent the first night on US soil in a hotel, as the boys hadn't slept in over 30 hours, and neither had we, it was late evening, and we really didn't want to drive home yet !  As soon as we got to the hotel, Randall had to leave to find a store to buy food for the boys, so I got them ready for bed while he was gone.  At this point, we were all just exhausted - and Nikolai had had enough.  He had his first major meltdown - I truly thought that the hotel staff - or the police - would be knocking at the door any second LOL  Thankfully, he eventually calmed down, and we all managed to get a decent night of sleep.
The next morning, we packed up, and headed home  :)

The drive home was uneventful, and, at last, we were all home, and the boys were reunited with their big brother, Newt.

Today, October 7th 2019, marks one year home for Nikolai and Viktor.

They have each celebrated a birthday, they enjoyed their first Thanksgiving and Christmas, they have traveled to soccer tournaments - been to zoos - and met their Gran who flew in from England.  They've traveled to multiple states, and attended this past summer's Reece's Rainbow reunion !  

They have been to doctors, received therapies, and started school !!

ALL in all, they have spent the last year LIVING !!!!
They no longer spend their days laying in a crib, in the same diaper all day long, being fed slop.

They are ALIVE.  Thanks to Sealey, the brother they will never meet, they have made our lives so so much better - I truly cannot remember life without them !

Here are a few pictures of them from the past year - in no particular order - enjoy !!

I have so so many more pictures, but I'll stop for now !

Needless to say - adding Nik and Vik to our family has been amazing - this year has had it's ups and downs, but I wouldn't have missed it for the world.

Please - if you have ever even considered adoption for a second - think about it again.  These kids are so worth every single penny, every single sleepless night, every single frustration with paperwork, every single stomach churning second.

I am 56 years old - my husband turns 64 next month. 

If WE can do it - ANYONE can !! 

If you'd like to see more of the boys, please join our Facebook group - 
"Sealey's Legacy"