Friday, May 18, 2007

My Illegal Alien :)

Okay, so my kid's gonna be 17 in June, right? I finally consent to let him have his driver's license. Not something I'm thrilled about--considering Vicodin as a way to get through it.

However, it must be done. So here in the fine state of TX one must either certify to teach your kid to drive or send him off to driving school. Guess which one this lazzy assed mom picked. LMAO

I take him into the drivins school--a gig that's gonna cost me 355 bucks so he can get his permit and full driver's license. I bring the appropriate stuff--SS card birth certificate and GREENBACKS.

I sit down, I hand this all to the lady at the desk--she looks at it and informs me that because he has a foreign birth cert, he can't have a drivers license.

Hmmmmmmm, I say. Well, I said more, but it wasn't nice...

Now here's the deal. We adopted my oldest in Romania when that whole crush of adoptions was taking place in the 90's because the country was in a huge uproar after they whacked the leader of said country.

I spent five bloody weeks in hell over there, living like they did/possibly still do. Never before was I so thankful to be an American than I was after I left Romania. The mess the whacking of said leader left in its wake was horrifying. Buttloads of kids were abandonned in orphanages. Reason being, the leader of the country had outlawed birth control, demanding that women have children so he could create some kind of super race (loon). He also ordered blood transfusions for many of the women who were preggers because he thought it would strengthen their constitution. Yeah, it was like dat.

Um, you can only imagine what ran rampant after THAT. Aids. Everywhere. In fact, we didn't just go to adopt one child--we went for two. We were approved by immigration for TWO. However, the one little girl I fell in love with tested positive for AIDS and well, after that, I just couldn't go on. The American Embassy wasn't going to let her out of the country, 'fo 'sho. I had to go home after that. I couldn't take the idea she'd die alone in an orphanage, but my travel visa was only approved for six weeks. Luckily, a couple who did some work for humanitarian efforts took her and many other children in the same predicament. They lived in Romania for several years, caring for such children. She died clean, cuddled and fed and it's my only solace when I close my eyes at night.

But this isn't about what happened while I was there. It was probably one of the most tumultuous times of my life. Exciting, uplifting, horrendous on so many levels, frightening--a multitude of emotions that I remember as clearly as if it just happened yesterday. THIS is about my kid, who I legally and with the permission of INS (after home studies and paperwork like no other) adopted, brought to this country, spent two hours in customs getting his alien resident card after a 14 hour flight, raised, loved for 16 1/2 years now, trying to get a friggin' license.

So, anyhoodles, the wench at the driving school takes one look at his birth cert and says, "Oooooohhhhh, no. That's not legal. he needs an American b/c." I'm like, huh? How can he have an American one if he wasn't born here, you tard? it was made very clear to us when we returned via INS that we didn't have to re-adopt him here in the states. Everything, as far as we knew, was taken care of.

Now, I won't get into the whole scene with her. Suffice it to say, I could barely get a word in edgewise and if she called me darlin' or sweetheart one more condescending time, I was going to poke her beady eyes out with my keys :) I left her with a bit of my wisdom--nuff said.

So what does this all mean for the little bugger who thinks driving is his right? First, back in the year 2000, when he was 10 and we were getting close to having to naturalize him, a law was passed, stating all children adopted via US citizens (that's me, me, me) were automatically considered citizens too. When you adopt via another country, it used to be you had to naturalize your kid before they were 12. It's just filing papers and making a trip to my then state capitol, Albany. I remember saying to the ex--thank God we don't have to do that with a 10 year old and a 6 year old in tow.

So anyway, his resident alien card didn't expire until 2001. I figured because he's just considered a legal citizen, we don't need to renew. Which is true, for the most part anyway.

After our debacle at the driving school, where I almost showed my kid what "mom's gone wild" is all about, I get back home. Dig out the translated adoption papers from the American Embassy and start calling INS.

Holy fucksticks! First of all, these people have a diff story, depending on who you talk to and what hour of the day it is. I think after lunch isn't a good time for them. Their still getting over their tuna sandwich high and can't be bothered to be helpful. They pawned me off to the passport people. Who, according to them, if I can prove I'm a legal resident, will let me get my kid a passport and that will enable him to drive. No prob. I've got everything you people need and more.

Oh, a rare treat indeed these passport people! Apparently, the US Passport people are overwhelmed. Boo hoo. Lots of people want passports and they've hired extra folk to work round the clock to help you. Well, everyone except ME. After listening to a voice mail by a guy who sounds about as interested as I am in watching ketchup drip, I'm presented with a menu of options. A plethora of options, none of which apply to my kids situation. So I wait for the option to talk to a customer service rep. Never happens. I finally press ANY button--this bored voice tells me to hold for a customer service rep--two seconds later--they tell me to have a nice day and hang the frig up! I did that three times, people, before I finally lost it.

I think I clenched the phone and jumped up and down. It's vague because I ended up, via gritted teeth and a tenuous hold on my temper, calling back INS.

I get another lady, who I believe probably got laid during lunch because she was most helpful. She sent me to an ADOPTION SPECIALIST in OK city. I had to e-mail this unknown person and they're supposed to get back to me in two working days. I await this with the kind of anticipation one awaits a colonoscopy :)

So here are the facts--I adopted my son at 6 months old in December of 1990. I spent five weeks with a bunch of people who, while very hospitable, just wanted my money and in the condition that country was in, it's understandable. I paid an interpretor to shuffle us around and help me translate some very murky waters in Romanian orphanages. I've seen some things that would make your head spin on your shoulders. Things I wish didn't exist, but do. Things that made me see the bigger picture and left everything petty by the wayside. It grounded me. It humbled me.

I found my son in an orphanage. He was placed there because his mother couldn't provide for him. I met his bilogical mother. We chatted as best we could and we cried because she was losing a child she could in no way care for, and I was gaining one. It's a bittersweet gig, no doubt. She gave me her blessing. I have signed, necessary INS papers that say as much. I have his finalized adoption papers, AIDS test, and I think one of my lungs notarized, blessed, stamped and sealed from the American Embassy in Bucharest. I have his foreign B/C. I have his SS card that I applied for when he was two. I don't suppose I could've gotten one of those without proving I was his MOTHER by legal means. yes?

But the kid can't have a license until these people figure out what organ I should donate to them--or someone gets their story straight. Know what I find utterly ironic about this? There are loads of illegal's out there driving around WITH a license issued by the TX DMV. Maybe, instead of trying to do things the right way, I should've found one of those illegal's and asked him to forge me a b/c, eh? It tweaks me no end that the people who do it the right way kinda get screwed. I'm not going to debate the illegal alien issue. I only know my kid is a LEGAL ALIEN. he can't ever run for president (everyone say amen with me now. LOLLOL), but he's legal because I'm legal and the double whammy is--his father's legal TOO.

Know what else tweaks me? My kid works at the local grocery store. Our fine government gave him an SS card, let him work and happily take taxes from his paycheck every week. But he's not legal, even if INS says he is because I am. So he can fork over a good portion of his paycheck to the government that apparently isn't recognizing him, but he can't DRIVE????

I think I'm going to go practice removing my ovaries on the off chance that's what that driving school and this adoption specialist will want in return for his license.


DC :)


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