It is Finished!

We had our day (literally) in court today and Nathan Ilya Boehrs is officially our son!  We will not get our court decree until about May 10, but for all intents and purposes, Ilya has joined our family.  We could not be filled with more joy!

As Katie and I worked on her school Bible lesson (on Jesus’ promises to his disciples during the week leading up to his death) on Tuesday, there were so many parallels between our adoption of Ilya and the Lord’s adoption of us as his children and brothers and sisters of Christ.  It was amazing to me that we were covering this the day before our court date.  As Katie and I read from John 14:3, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.” I couldn’t help but think about going home next week to prepare Ilya’s bed and clothing for him.  And Bruce coming back for Ilya in May to bring him home with him.  Of course this passage is Jesus speaking to his disciples (before his impending death and subsequent resurrection) about their future home in heaven with him, but there are obvious parallels.  John 14:18 says, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”  Again, this is Jesus talking to his disciples about the Holy Spirit remaining with them when Jesus was physically gone from earth.  But the promise of returning is evident.  Next week, we will depart for the U.S. and we will leave Ilya with the promise of his father returning to him to bring him home where a place has been prepared for him.

It feels very special that our adoption of Ilya is happening during Easter week.  As we reflect on what Christ has done for us in offering eternal salvation through his death on the cross, we are humbled by God allowing us to participate in giving Ilya a new life.  Ilya’s life is very precious to God and we know that God has good plans for him.  “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and future.” Jeremiah 29:11.

We were thankful to get out the door on time this morning and arrive at the orphanage by 10:00 as requested to get to our 11:00 appointment.  We arrived at the court house a few minutes late, but as it turned out, it did not matter.  Shortly after our arrival, we learned that our judge was not even there yet!  We were a little surprised by this, but we have heard other stories of things like this happening.  So we chose to be patient and sat mostly in silence for quite some time.  We were on the 2nd floor of the interior part of the building, so there were no windows to look out of.  It was dark in there as 10 out of 12 ceiling light fixtures were burned out.  It is so odd coming from a very instant gratification society such as the U.S., to observe (post-Soviet society) people tolerantly waiting in the cold and dark to see a judge who is very late for work.  No one complained, not even our son.  Our other children would have been complaining had they been there.  We were not comfortable, there was nothing to look at, nothing to do, nothing to listen to.  Had we known we would be waiting so long, we would have brought something for Ilya to do to pass the time.

We did get out for a short walk over to a nearby building to go to the bathroom.  Aha!  My first encounter with a squatty potty.  No way, said I.  I did think twice about it, wondering when the next opportunity would come, but decided I just didn’t have to go badly enough to bring myself to go that way.  We did enjoy our little walk out in the sunshine though.  We returned to the “cave” to wait some more.

The highlight of the day for me, was when Ilya fell asleep sitting up while we waited.  I gently placed my arm around his shoulders.  Eventually, he was so deeply asleep that he started falling over and it gave me the perfect opportunity to provide a soft spot for him to land.  I pulled him into me and unbeknownst to him, enjoyed holding my son for the first time while he slept.  It was a golden moment.

We wondered how our other children were doing back at the orphanage.  We left them alone in a playroom, knowing that another adoptive family from MN would soon be there to offer some supervision.  We left them some snacks and juice, but not enough to really sustain them for 6 hours!!  Our judge FINALLY arrived sometime between 2:30 and 3:00.  Our court session took place in a rather tight room (like most Ukrainian government offices we have been in) for 9 people and three desks.  At least there were windows with sunshine streaming in!  The room was pretty full with the judge, her two assistants, Bruce and I, Viktor, our attorney, Natasha, the social worker from COCH, Anna from juvenile services, and Ilya.  The proceedings lasted about 15 minutes, nothing unusual really, except for one thing.  Noticing his earring, the judge asked our son who had allowed him to pierce his ear.  I couldn’t hear Ilya’s response, nor did I catch the translated version by our attorney.  But let’s just say that this is not an issue that we are addressing with our son at this time.  We are pretty sure we know who put him up to it and I think we understand why.  Beyond the hygiene of his ear, the earring is the least of our concerns in our new role as his parents.  We love him with or without an earring.  Everything else went smoothly and Ilya was declared our son somewhere between 3:00 and 3:30.  We waited for a few minutes while our attorney returned Anna to the juvenile services office and then we all took off to return to the orphanage.  We arrived at about 4:30 and our other kids (especially Stephanie and Katie) were very happy to see us.  We were all shocked that we had been gone so long.  Who knew?!  We are very grateful to the family who watched out for them while we were away.  We finally returned to our apartment at about 6:30 – LONG day.  We had a series of mini meltdowns among our children and it is understandable after the weird day they had.  They’ve been with us every day, all day for 3 weeks straight, and then suddenly are separated from us ALL day.  Apparently they behaved very well while at COCH, but the emotions of it all were coming to the surface throughout the evening.  We are glad this day is done!  Praises to our heavenly Father for bringing all of us through it.


24 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. LB Buchl
    Apr 20, 2011 @ 17:26:57

    CONGRATULATIONS!!!! Yes it is an incredible feeling of love during those little milestones. Here’s to many more firsts. So happy for you all.


  2. Dave Ritzman
    Apr 20, 2011 @ 17:52:59

    Hallelujiah! PTL! God is Good! We heard there was some kinda glitch but God is faithful!

    Thank you for the Word study on “adoption” related to the parallels of Easter week and adopting Iilya. The analogy is a simple concept to understand. However, how God is using us to adopt these children is humbling and certainly brings a more tangible revelation (not just a concept) of how He adopts us into His family and His great love for us through the cross.

    Thanks for sharing the day with us. God Bless (and refresh) the Boehrs!


  3. Tara
    Apr 20, 2011 @ 19:26:06

    I love following along with all of you on this journey. How very cool. Congratulations and indeed Hallelujiah! I love you guys, and am very happy for you. God bless you.


  4. Katya Junkovitch
    Apr 20, 2011 @ 20:47:15

    THis is so awesome! We are so happy for you. THanks for blogging all the details. It is so interesting to follow along with you. I can’t wait to see you again.



  5. Sue
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 00:11:32

    Praise the Lord & welcome to the family Nathan!!! How precious that you got to hold your sleeping son for the first time the day he became yours – just like all your other kids!! 😉 Love to you all!!


    • motorcyclemama5
      Apr 21, 2011 @ 15:15:34

      Thank you, Sue! Yes, it was a very precious moment in time. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to hold Brian until he was a couple days old. He was in rough shape and in an isolette with an IV, and lots of monitors. He was a sick boy until the antibiotics started taking over. I only got to see him once briefly on the day he was born. They rolled my surgical gurney into the NICU and I got to touch his hand through the little isolette door. I didn’t see him again until late on the next day. : ( But I probably shouldn’t rehash that now!


  6. Amanda
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 06:32:57

    Loved reading how God knit this all together for you, Jill. Very exciting!


  7. Karla
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 08:48:51

    Congratulations! We are very happy for you. We hope you have set the new standard for how long the adoption process will take once you in Kiev :). We are scheduled to arrive in Kiev on April 30 so we are about to get in the frantic packing mode. We will pray for a safe journey home for all of you and a peaceful time for Nathan while he waits for Bruce’s return. The Landrys


    • motorcyclemama5
      Apr 21, 2011 @ 15:08:23

      Thank you, Landry family! We will be praying for you guys too as you prepare to travel. Keep your eyes on the prize. : ) Hopefully things will go quickly for you too!

      We are ready to return home. We are disappointed that we haven’t been able to do many of the things we were hoping to do – like museums, etc. But we are looking forward to returning home to MN! – Jill


      • Chris
        Apr 21, 2011 @ 16:43:33

        Jill and Bruce,

        Congratulations! I want to encourage you to take the next three days and spend time seeing the sights around Kiev and taking Nathan out with you with a chaperone. Enjoy the last few days there as a vacation and spend time in the culture and sights, you’ll make some great memories to last a lifetime that can’t be repeated. School and other things can wait and will always be there. Chris

      • motorcyclemama5
        Apr 21, 2011 @ 17:15:33

        Thank you, Chris, for your kind words and encouragement to live a little! I tend to be such a task master and really want the kids to slide right back into school and not be behind. I know we will regret not getting to things we hoped to do. It’s been tough going out to the orphanage at least every other day and schooling the kids on the other days. And then there’s the constant grocery shopping! : / I know we need to take the time to do some of them and I wish we could take Ilya with us, but N. didn’t exactly offer when I mentioned the desire to do that yesterday. I guess we can bring it up tomorrow and see what they say. Thanks again!! – Jill

  8. The McEacherns
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 09:44:52

    Yay! Congratulations! If you haven’t already, read Adopted For Life by Russell Moore. It also covers the parallels of physical and spiritual adoption. Great reading! Again, congrats! Enjoy your last few days in Kiev!

    (Oh, and I’ll bet the bulbs weren’t burned out, but just turned off. Ukrainians don’t turn on the lights until it’s absolutely necessary and then only one light! We once went to a museum where a docent followed us from room to room, turning on the room light when we entered and switching it off when we exited!)


    • motorcyclemama5
      Apr 21, 2011 @ 15:04:33

      Yes, I was reading Russell Moore’s book on and off during our months of waiting. : )

      Too funny about the lights… I just wanted so badly to say “Hey! Does anyone else notice that it’s really cold and dark in here??” I guess I should just be thankful we had a place to sit down! We’ve had many a Metro and bus ride where we stood the whole way!


  9. Tina McDaniel
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 10:49:14

    I’m so happy for all of you – what a blessing you will be to your new handsome family member!!! My heart overflows with excitement for your family!!! Many, Many Blessings to you and your Family!!!


  10. Molly Vesperman
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 10:51:53

    Congratulations! What an exciting time for you all! 🙂


  11. Jennie
    Apr 21, 2011 @ 20:34:28

    Praise God-Congratulations to all of you!


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