Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The One Where I Trade Frustration for Exhaustion

The process is sucking the zoom-zoom right out of me. My current issue, the translation.....You know, the one that every family waits for? Yeah, that one. Ours was supposed to be available Monday. Our agency chose to use a translation service out of Georgia and this past week-end, the Southeast suffered though some pretty heavy weather. No power means no translation. I needed the translation to be able to keep an appointment with a University Adoption Clinic. Clinic is held once a week, and if I miss this one, I'll have to wait until next week. And so will all the other waiting families. Himself and I have refused to sign an acceptance until we get an opinion from a doctor. Monday, we left the social worker's office with some photos, and the a copy of the original Chinese referral. I'm thinking that the doc doesn't read Chinese.....assurances were given that the translation would arrive in my inbox the following morning.

As if.......

Rather than being able to take care of the regular "business" of life, I spent the morning hitting refresh on my inbox every few minutes. By eleven I had to get dressed in my grown-up clothes for a noon meeting with some financial advisors. Just as I was stepping into the shower, a phone call from the social worker....the translation will not arrive until later in the afternoon. I'm not surprised by the delay, but I am surprised that forty minutes have gone by. Ten of those minutes were devoted to me asking the questions that I needed to and relaying my displeasure with the whole "our translator is official" thing. (we could have had an un-official translation done by a friend of ours over a week ago) The other thirty minutes were devoted to her pouring on her sugary platitudes. Gah!

I hang up with her and immediately call the financial guy. Crap! Voice mail. I leave a message that I'm running fifteen minutes behind. I throw myself into the shower, slap on some make-up and clothes, stuff the spinning dog into the kitchen (please Lord, let his bladder be relatively empty) and jump in the car. The car, is the equivelent of a rolling garbage dump. Complete with copious amounts of bird poop. We've been tending to spring chores on the outside of the house, so we've used both the Nytmobile and Vanbo to carry around all different kinds of ourdoorsy stuff, and since there is currently numerous yards of mulch residing in the middle of my driveway, whoever gets home first gets the garage, the other party is forced onto the street with it's many wildlife laced trees. Obviously I was refreshing my inbox when I should have been at the car wash....

Halfway to my destination, finance guy calls, he hasn't checked his voice mail and is itchy for me to arrive...grrrr...I'll be there in five minutes. I breeze in to finance guy's office, meet him (we've only spoken on the phone) and his partner (I didn't know he was working with one). I know the partner, he was a regular at a bar that I worked at, and on top of that he's friends with the one owner of that bar that I can't stand. Sh*t! Now on top of being late, frustrated, and flustered, I have to watch my P's and Q's as well!?! Crap! I hate this small world thingy!

In the middle of the pitch (errr...meeting) syrupy social worker calls to inform me that the translation is now in my inbox. I inform her that I am nowhere near my inbox, that I'm in a meeting and I will check my inbox as soon as I
get home. "That's alright" she coos. "I just wanted to let you know it was there and let you know that your child has a small, but very common malformation but not to get upset". Splendid! Thanks for the warning. I'll look at it when I get home. The meeting continues, finance guy makes the play for the stuff I clearly told him was not up for discussion, partner smooths it over, and I leave them with the understanding that I will get in touch with them in the next few weeks.

A quick stop for some food (was I supposed to eat? Seriously, I don't remember) and a pick-up from Walgreens (I was three hours late for that) and I'm home checking the inbox.

Now there is a story here (isn't there always?) From the photos we received, it appears that our child was prepped for adoption to another family in September of 2006. For whatever reason, that adoption never took place. As I'm reading the translation, I notice that we have two sets of bloodwork, with different results but the same dates. Truth, fiction, or simple error? Um, yeah, the dates are 2006. Entire sections were marked as "illegible" by the translator, but characters are clearly visible on the Chinese copy. At least one section of the translation still contains the Chinese characters, but with no English translation. The only developmental report is from 2006.


Back to the phone and the syrupy social worker. "It's probably just a mistake, I can't read Chinese, but I'm sure that everything is just fine." Followed by the one that almost pushed me to a loss of impulse control, "Well, I'm sure that your friend can clear up any discrepancies with the translation". After a deep breath, I voiced my concern about having a developmental report that is over a year and a half old. "Well, certainly we can ask, but it may not be happen, I can ask our Chinese contact to look into it, but....." That tears it folks, Miss Nyt has reached critical mass. I sweetly informed the syrupy social worker that if her Chinese contact couldn't get to it, mine could. And that I have all of the information that I need to reach the Welfare Institute, and the Director of the Institute and that our friend's wife (Chinese) is an attorney who spent a portion of her career finalizing adoptions on the U.S. side. I'm pretty certain I can tend to the matter myself. The panic from her was palpable. She informed me that the CCAA gives agencies a hard time when families go outside the boundaries. I acknowledged her concerns, but in my head the only thing I could think was "tough sh*t". As it stands right now, our friend is currently re-translating all of the Chinese documents and comparing them to the "official" translation. Oh, and all those sections marked "illegible" aren't....

The "stupid" is exhausting me. If the doctor received the "official" translation in time, I will spend $500.00 and an evening listening to the doc opine on information that is over a year old. The medical may be close to current, but obviously, the developmental will not be. Shall we discuss the $1850.00 that my lovely agency charges as a referral fee? You know, the one that covers translation? The translation that is incomplete and inaccurate? The one that our friend is having to re-do? I shudder to think what it will cost to properly "thank" our friend and his wife for all their help. Did I mention that this entire process causes one to hemorrhage money? I shall not, after all it would be in poor taste to do so.......And heaven forbid I do or say anything that might be in "poor taste"... :)

1 comment:

Kelly said... not a shock! They had switched some pages in our file with one of the other children, once we got it (after they had sent it to said agency AND not called them and said it was coming AND translation agency was out of the country and it sat on their desk for over 10 days while I called and bitched at them that I should have a freakin' ETA!) I found the flip between the files. I also found some stuff that they didn't translate, and they brushed it off as information for the people using the forms. Hello?! Translation folks. That means everything. Some other things were missing too. They have given a bit though since then- they would not give us the Mandarin file no way no how, nor pics till we could have the translation.

We had our friend (born and raised in Chengdu, thankfully her family is fine) retranslate the whole stinkin' thing in like 30 minutes. Oh, and a lot of the personality stuff was wrong in "nuance" as they called it at the agency to really have a very different meaning!

Give me a call sometime, I want to celebrate and find out all about Jade. I'll listen to the venting too...even if you think I'm not ponying up over the labels thing! :)

Now they are busting my chops about wanting to start a 3 year adoption program "cause it's too soon." Who the hell are they to tell me?