In Country

Greetings from Bulgaria!

I thought I would write a little update about our adoption and our current situation with immigration.

We are right now waiting to be able to pick up our daughter who we travelled to meet in July. Originally we had planned to take the sponsorship route to get her home to Canada, but unfortunately our agency all but told us we couldn’t. In the end this led to us filing for part 1 of our citizenship approval in the beginning of July before we left.

Fast forward to September 25th, the day our court hearing was originally scheduled for. We had been in contact with our MPs office (the only way to expedite immigration) weeks prior to court letting them know our case is urgent and we had a court date that was fast approaching. Unfortunately they were not able to expedite anything until they had a signed decree (I will give them the benefit of the doubt on this and assume what they told us was true.) September 25 arrives and we do not pass court. Our judge has requested an additional letter from our provincial ministry, we are rescheduled for October 2.

We have the letter in by October 2, we pass court, and after the week long waiting period, the judge signs the decree. Yay! We book our flights for a cautious time in the future, November 7th to 28th. This is an extra long trip to make sure we would have immigration cleaned up before we came home. No problem right?

We have this whole time been in contact with our MP (Chris Warkentin) providing updates and asking for follow up on our case. We finally received the decree around the 23rd of October and brought it straight to the MPs office. The employee at the office told us she had sent it off and we would have to wait to hear back. We continued to call, stop by, and call some more. Finally after a particularly rude phone call with the office where the employee working on our case basically said “don’t call us, we’ll call you” and refused to call immigration about our case, I realized we weren’t getting anywhere. My mother in law offered to contact her MP (Bob Zimmer xoxo!) instead and they responded immediately with lots of questions and helpful feedback from immigration.

Eventually we found out that the request to expedite did actually come from the other more helpful and less “our” MP! What a nightmare! Thank God we had someone to help, but to know that all of our contact with Warkentin’s office did nothing was a real slap in the face! The same day we contacted Bob Zimmer’s office I had also sent a heartfelt email to Warkentin, just in case it was only the unmotivated employee that was holding us up. That email is still unanswered. I am disappointed because I know others in his family have adopted and I thought he would be sensitive to our case.

So here we are, literally on a plane to Bulgaria as I draft this, with no approval. The worst part is that our Bulgarian agency has refused to allow us pick up until we have Part 1 approved. They literally threatened to call child protective services on us. This is a complete other issue since we are legally her parents, so LEGALLY I don’t believe they could stop us, but I’m not about starting an international incident. We could hire a lawyer, but this is coming from the BG lawyers that supposedly already work for us, and we are broke on account of the adoption thing we are trying to finalize.

So now we wait! Luckily our approval will be mailed via regular post…and immigration is only 0 for 2 on the mail that they have “sent” us. SO SOMEONE TWEET TRUDEAU OR SOMETHING!!! (#HeyJT ?)

Sorry…lost my cool for a second there. That hasn’t happened much lately 😉

Now may I address the “well-wishers” of the world: I know you don’t know when you’re being insensitive, but allow me to shed some light. Asking us if we can cancel our flights does not help us. We are brand new parents to a four year old who is in another country. You would be hard pressed to find any other parents who would be okay with this situation. My family is just like yours! I love my daughter and I want to get her home where she belongs. Just because most adoptions are lengthy processes doesn’t mean we deserve to wait. It especially doesn’t mean we deserve to wait because other people can’t get their acts together. I don’t know how else to say it. This is hard on our little family and it is not ideal to be in a foreign country without an income on a hope and a prayer that we can both stay until this is done. If it takes more than a month Jason will have to go home and back to work and we won’t start our bonding at all like we wanted.

Can you keep us in your thoughts and prayers?

The Klassens
c/o Bulgarian pigeon
Outside an iron gate behind an orphanage
Burgas, Bulgaria


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