‘What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men …… That is what love looks like.’ - St. Augustine

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

I Need a Hero

I have waited for six years for God to send me a Hero for Anya. I have done anything and everything I could do to get her here, to no avail. Now, because she was denied the chance to come be with her family, she is lying in a hospital bed, scared out of her mind, wanting nothing but to have us by her side. And I can't. I had a TIA almost 2 weeks ago and cannot safely fly. I'm supposed to be in bed, taking it easy and helping my brain to heal. Instead , I am on the computer and phone for 12 hours at a stretch trying to locate a hero for my girl.

Here are the current facts: Anya was shot by someone at random, at point blank range in a convenience store in her old neighborhood. It's a crime-ridden area and shootings are not uncommon. If you're a MA resident like me, think Dorchester. Anya had two friends with her (Thank God). The man was quickly caught and arrested, but Anya did not fare so well. I had pictured far worse in my head, so I was actually relieved when I first heard she had only a wound to her leg. I was relieved, that is, until I saw the wound myself.

Anya was able to get a friend to bring her her laptop to the hospital so we could skype with her. We were able to get through to her at 1am our time last night and video-chatted with her on and off for an hour. She was heavily medicated and did not always understand what we were saying, but she was so happy to be 'with'us, that is all that mattered. Her face is swollen. She appears very disoriented. She has some injury to her shoulder that is bleeding. It actually looks like a failed IV attempt. Not sure. She let me video her showing me her leg . She has already had two surgeries on it, and the doctor says it's really bad. She was shot so close that the bullet shattered her ankle bone. She has a silver-dollar sized hole right through her. They have some horrible-looking contraption on her whole leg that I can only describe as looking like a torture device. It looked like her leg had pins in it, but I cant imagine they had to do that. Anyway, it is a large metal "cage" with screws into or against her leg.

She lost so much blood she had to have a transfusion, and the Dr says the wound is "contaminated." She is on her 2nd day with a 102 temp - not a good sign. The Dr doubts she'll ever use that ankle again. Being even mildly disabled in that part of Russia is like a death sentence. I had just finished paying for Anya's driving school so she could get her license and work as a courier after January. That's off the table now. And do you think the driving school will refund her $650? Doubtful.

I need a Hero. I need someone, after all these horrible years of waiting, to step forward and tell me they have an answer, a way out. I've had a billion offers and suggestions over the years, but few stay the course. My hope right now is with three people who have been helping all these years. I can't give their names, but one is my friend B.D who has a great connection who has been incredibly supportive and helpful these past years. The next is G.H. who has many connections with the State Dept and such and has been a non-stop source of valid info AND encouragement. The final is M.F. who works in adoption advocacy, child welfare, etc and has great Washington and media contacts. These three people are the ones that could possibly lead me that that "Hero" I am waiting for.

Anya needs to come home. It is so simple and yet it has been the most difficult undertaking of my life and her life. Why? I've stopped asking that. How? That is the question I need to keep holding onto. How can we get her here? How can we make a path? Please pray for a road to finally appear. I am so spent, so exhausted, so scared...I need someone to step forward and say they can light the way. I've prayed a hundred thousand prayers, written more letters and emails than most would venture in a lifetime, called more politicians and USCIS workers and State Dept officials than I would ever care to count. I don't know what else to do.

Hero, where are you?

Recent photo of Anya with her friend's husband


  1. Keri, if you think it will do any good, I can call my two local senators again. They only had advice to offer last time. I'm afraid the only real political contact I have is the local vice mayor, who is currently running for re-election. I do have a friend who might have a stronger tie to Ron Paul, but I'm not sure if he's likely to be any help either.

  2. We need your contacts, too! Misha needs surgery; we need to get him out of Ukraine. He's only 11, but the paperwork was never processed to get him on the registry, and now he has another year in Ukraine! He could die before then, literally!!!

  3. I would contact Nancy Robertson at The Grace Children's Foundation. She does a lot of advocacy work for at risk and disadvantaged children including bringing them to the United States on humanitarian and medical visas. She might have contacts who could help. http://www.gracechildren.org/

  4. i don't even know what to say. my heart is hurting with you. praying tonight.


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