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Re: [Slovak-World] How We Adopted

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  • Caye Caswick
    Fabulous, thanks for that Martin. Caye ... === message truncated === ____________________________________________________________________________________ Get
    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 26, 2007
      Fabulous, thanks for that Martin.


      --- Martin Votruba <votrubam@...> wrote:

      > Up to 90% Slovaks say in opinion polls that they
      > don't like the
      > Roma/Gypsies. Schools sometimes group Romani
      > students in special
      > classes for children with learning disabilities,
      > which, some take to
      > be genetic. Fewer than 2% of the people in Slovakia
      > registered Romani
      > ethnicity in the census, but the Romani activists as
      > well as the
      > authorities estimate that close to 6% might do so if
      > they weren't
      > faced with prejudice. A Slovak blogger has written
      > about her
      > experiences with the adoption of a Romani baby girl.
      > I post its
      > translation below.
      > Martin
      > votruba "at" pitt "dot" edu
      > x x x
      > [a Slovak blog, Feb. 26, 2007]
      > by Natalia Blahova
      > http://tinyurl.com/2bdj8j
      > "Don't adopt a Romani child," the psychologist kept
      > telling us during
      > the pre-adoption counseling, "you have your two
      > White children, it'll
      > catch people's eyes, all that'll come of it will be
      > trouble for you."
      > However, he also told us not to adopt a girl
      > because she could be
      > molested by someone in the family.
      > "Oh my, it won't be our blood! What are you
      > thinking!" our extensive
      > family said, for whom she is now their dearest
      > jewel.
      > She lags behind both mentally and physically. She
      > cries all the time,
      > vomits a lot, doesn't sleep at night. This was the
      > information we got
      > as we were picking her up from the children's home.
      > Regardless, she'd
      > attracted our attention with her interest in the
      > world around her.
      > She observed every movement in the room, everyone
      > who began to talk.
      > We didn't need to be psychologists to guess that
      > enchanted energy was
      > hiding inside the still little body, and a desire to
      > live and enjoy.
      > We were getting ready to undo the spell.
      > As I was changing her diapers for the first time and
      > got my first
      > glimpse of her "just a little sore buttocks," I
      > thought I'd faint or
      > throw up. In addition to the usual children's
      > cosmetics, we also
      > bought a pint of Betadine, washed her wounds with it
      > regularly, and
      > covered them with a thick layer of creme. We first
      > heard her cry
      > after three months when a very ugly uncle came for a
      > visit and pulled
      > faces at her.
      > VOMITS A LOT!
      > We saw her vomit for the first, and last, time at
      > the children's home
      > when they allowed us to feed her. The nurse brought
      > a baby bottle
      > with a cut-off pacifier, which left a hole the size
      > of my little
      > finger in it. Full of doubt, I put it in her mouth,
      > and the whole
      > content of the bottle disappeared in her within
      > seconds. "Enough,
      > enough!" shouted the nurse, "that's just froth now,
      > she'd be
      > swallowing air."
      > But the baby went on gulping at full throttle.
      > Clearly, she was
      > hungry after a 4-hour fast. And since it went in so
      > lickety-split,
      > she shortly regurgitated half of the carrot puree.
      > Then, with her
      > stomach half-empty, she waited another 4 hours for
      > more of the same.
      > A vicious circle.
      > At home, we fed her when she asked for it. Not by
      > crying. She
      > wiggled discontentedly, lost her good mood... We
      > mothers recognize
      > that. She's never vomited since.
      > That was undeniable. A 6-month-old child should be
      > able to roll from
      > back to belly, sit, reach out for toys while
      > sitting, grasp things.
      > Our Alz~betka wasn't even able to lift her head when
      > she was
      > belly-down. She was like a rag doll. It was
      > actually something of a
      > problem to caress her in your arms. When you pick
      > your baby up, it'll
      > automatically hold on to your sides with its knees,
      > it works with you
      > a little as you carry it round. But try to mind and
      > cuddle a baby
      > that's never been carried in arms. Her tiny arms
      > and legs would hang
      > by her sides, she kept sliding off us like a little
      > snake.
      > We went for a neurological exam 2 months later. The
      > doctor shook her
      > head in disbelief when she read the release report
      > from the children's
      > home. The child meets all the benchmarks, she's
      > completely all right.
      > Her diagnosis: 'social deprivation corrected in a
      > home environment.'
      > The 'correction' hadn't come from any special
      > exercise or constant
      > attention. She was simply at home. A week before
      > her first birthday
      > she set off running towards me across the children's
      > room. With lots
      > of giggles and joy for her. I cried.
      > How would you judge the mental retardation of a baby
      > who had no reason
      > to be interested in the world of her existence,
      > which consisted of the
      > spindles of her crib and the nurse?! We saw
      > children there who made
      > more effort, whose motto was 'Don't give up!' She
      > had given up. She
      > didn't initiate contact sensing that she would only
      > get as much as
      > they had to give her, and nothing would help her.
      > So she lay and
      > stared at the white ceiling.
      > If only you could see the fright and horror in her
      > eyes when we took
      > her outside in a stroller for the first time. "The
      > ceiling is blue!
      > And something's shining so brightly in my eyes."
      > Terrible noises, a
      > dog barked, a car passed. Each event caused a
      > scared start. But we
      > threw her in the water and she swam. She was able
      > to make more than
      > two-word sentences within a year. Now she never
      > stops talking. Don't
      > let me forget. She's taking English classes with
      > her brother. She
      > can count to ten in English, name colors, some
      > animals, sing a few
      > English songs. After 6 months in kindergarten.
      > DO NOT WORRY
      > "You know, I was born to an auntie, and she couldn't
      > take care of me.
      > And mommy and daddy were just looking for exactly
      > such a pretty girl,
      > so they took me from the children's home with them,
      > to our home."
      > That's what 4-year old Alz~betka tells you upon
      > request today, and
      > very happily so. It's a beckoning story for her,
      > which, moreover, she
      > uses to flatter herself. That's why I'm not anxious
      > about the day
      > when someone tries to present it to her in an
      > inconsiderate
      === message truncated ===

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