Adoption Day– 5 Years Later

Wow! Can it really be 5 years ago we were standing in a small Russian courtroom arguing with a very stubborn Russian judge? We weren’t arguing as much as he was YELLING at us…’Why did we want to adopt this Russian girl? She would always be a Russian girl, never an American girl?’ He wasn’t bothered by us wanting Alex, a small 5 yr. old boy. But, this 10 yr. old girl…WHY? He asked us repeatedly until I looked at the translator in frustration and asked her, “What does he want me to say?” She looked at me in wonder and said she had no idea. It was a scary moment.
The judge talked with Tania for a moment and asked her if she wanted to go to America to live. She was actually stammering and didn’t seem to understand what he was asking. This made me nervous.
However, I will always remember Tania’s caregivers from her orphanage. Several of these women traveled 7 hours by train to this courthouse to stand up for Tania and her need to be adopted. They stood up to this judge and told him that she needed to leave this orphanage. She was not safe in the orphanage and they felt she’d have a better life in America.
We all went out into the hall and waited for about 30 minutes for his decision. Once we came back in he actually smiled when he read that Tania and Alex were now our children. We were not allowed to take any photos in the courthouse so we will just have to remember how it looked and how foreign we felt in this very Russian building.
We went out and had a nice little lunch at a nearby cafe to celebrate with our translator and facilitator. Alex was still back in Komsomolsk at the orphanage since he was too young to come to court. We got back into the van and headed back the 5 hours to see him and tell him the good news.
I remember 3 weeks later how good it felt to have them home…and have all of us back in the USA. It is funny that Alex, just yesterday, asked how far it was to Russia. When I told him it was very, very far, he told me he’d like to go back and see his friends in the orphanage. Tania mentions this every now and then, but I think this is the first time Alex asked about it on his own.
Right now, I don’t see this happening. 1- It’s very expensive. 2- The city in Russia they lived in is a Closed City…and only people on business are allowed in. 3-It is not an American-friendly area and the fact we don’t speak Russian would not help.
But for today….I made a cake that says Adoption Day on it. We’ll honor their parents and remember their 3 biological brothers that are still living in Komsomolsk…and thank God for adding them to our family.

Deborah Mumm

The Adoption Coach

Adoption Day 7-7-04

Adoption Day 7-7-04

3 responses to this post.

  1. Wow I can’t believe it’s been five years already. That’s so wonderful of you and Dennis to have done this wonderful thing for these two very blessed children! God is with you!

    Love, Carol


  2. You are wonderful people and your 5 children are very blessed. May they bring you as much joy as you have all of them. Many blessings in the coming years. Hugs, Alice


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