Well, yesterday I got a chance to go into the city w/ a couple of other moms. We went to PriceSmart, a guatemalan chain owned by Sams/Walmart. Strangely, it was the most I've felt like home since I've been here. It was so encouraging to see Eliot sitting in a shopping cart as I tool through the store looking at brands from home. Then just outside the store, there was a Payless. I happen to be in that odd place in life where seeing a Payless Shoe Store is like having coffee w/ an old friend from high school. To celebrate feeling normal, I bought a pair of bright red flats.
Upon coming home, I got the news that our case got another previo. A quick review: previo means kick-out. This is bad, very bad. It means the Guatemalan government finds something unsatisfiying about our paperwork. This brings our total to 7. Most cases receive 1-2 if any at all. We're pretty sure we now hold the record. Russ and I are asking a million questions of our agency and our lawyer but there's only so much that will do. They are hoping to be able to get us back into PGN early next week but after that the average wait to hear anything is 4-8 weeks. Our hope of getting Eliot home before his birthday seems like a joke.
So, how do people deal w/ devasting news when there's a baby to take care of? Can I lay in bed all day and mope? Yeah right. Can I grasp at retail therapy? Not when there's formula and diapers to buy and a limited budget. Can I yell and throw things? Not when there's a sleeping baby in the same room. Oddly, I put on my red shoes and cry. A lot. Can I at least pretend this isn't happening and that I'll be putting Eliot in a shopping cart at the Sam's behind my house like it's a day of running errands?
This seems to be a never ending cycle. Kickout, followed by a fixed file returned to PGN, the reviewer on our case is hopeful and pushes it through, the lawer and facilitator get hopeful and tell us that things look good, I send home half of my things in anticipation that I won't need them because I'm coming home, I buy a huge pack of diapers thinking that this will probably be the last pack I buy in Guatemala, I dress cute each morning assuming that I'll get a special call today and pictures will be taken, and then the unthinkable happens.
This one seems to especially sting for the fact that major milestones are in line for Eliot. The milestones will still happen, just in Guatemala and probably w/o Russ. How do people do this?
On that note, by the way, those of you around Russ, please allow him some space at this time. It's easy for me to take space being that I live in Central America but Russ doesn't have that. He is busy w/ his band right now, which is a blessing. However, he will be back in STL soon.
One comfort is my suite mate, Sharon. Her case is still worse than mine, surprisingly. To hear her story go to http://txparamedic.spaces.live.com/. While the majority of our friends will be gone within the month, Sharon and Bella will still be here. Chances are high that they'll be here when we leave, even. Please send encouragments her way if you stop by her site. She thinks I'm having a Dorothy complex w/ the red shoes but she made me french toast for breakfast anyway.
"What can we do?" is the question asked the most at this point. We'll let you know soon, after we gather our thoughts and finish processing what this means for our lives.