Court has came and went and it was a great success. We arrived at the courthouse at 845 am and were led to a small hall to sit on a bench outside of a room. Some papers were exchanged from our facilitator and the lady in the office and then we were told to wait back on the back. I was so nervous that I ate a whole pack of tic tacs sitting there.
We were then called into the "court room", which was just an office. There was the judge, a transcriptionist, two jurors, the inspector, the facilitator and us. The judge was a pretty woman, about 40 years old, with typical Ukrainian clothing. We immediately started and the first question that was asked to us by the judge was "Do you trust us?" My gut was screaming, uhhh..."No, not really" but my mouth said "yes". Ok...I am 6000 miles away from home, in a small, dark room with complete strangers dressed like strippers, with more money strapped on my body that most of them make in a year's time, and NOW I am starting to get really nervous. I look over at Sean and think "Well, I know he can physically get us out of here if things go south, but what would we do once we got out of the building?" I don't have time to stay nervous because things are proceeding and the judge is talking a hundred miles an hour and Angelina is semi-whispering to us about what she is saying. We had to stand and introduce ourselves (which by the way-is your full name, date of birth, address and occupation). We showed our passports and sat back down. We were then asked if we had our own children and if they were healthy. We said yes and then we were asked a few questions about whether we were aware that these boys were not healthy. Again yes. We were asked what their life would be like, including where they would sleep, etc. Answered and moved on. One of the jurors had a question. She asked "Are the boys going to live in the same house as you or are they going to live in a separate building?" Uhhmmmm....No, they will live in our house and stay with us. Ok. Everyone was happy. Sean finished up the interviews with his one answer. They asked how we were familiar with people with DS and he said that he was raised with his Uncle Mac from the time he was little until the time Mac died and that Mac was his best friend. I heard the bell for the KO. That summed it up and we could have been finished right there, but the inspector wanted to speak. She was very nice and said that she could tell immediately that we would be good parents to the boys because of how we first interacted with them on our first meeting. She said that most kids like ours would be scared and not let us touch them, etc. (plus the fact that they were sleepy and had been awoken from their naps to meet us) but that they came to us and sat on our laps and interacted with us. Then the judge looked at the calendar and said we could come and pick up our decree on September 20 and take them home. Court lasted about 10 minutes and it was over. We thanked them and left.
Thanks for all of the prayers and well wishes. They worked!!! We are now packing up and getting back on the train at 5 pm to go back to Kiev. We will arrive in Kiev at 11 am tomorrow morning. I am not sure what we have to do about the power of attorney at the US Embassy because Angelina thinks it is closed for 9/11, but we will see. Will update as soon as possible.