A little over a month ago I had had it with our boys and their feet. Ruslan had once again walked a hole through the bottom of his shoes and another PT had told us that he couldn’t help, and said in fact “No one in Ukraine can help you.” In the throes of frustration, I decided to put it out to the wonderful Wide Awake community to see if any of you knew someone who could help our Ruslan. We had exhausted our resources here in Ukraine and at last, decided it was time to look outside our borders for help. I wrote a blog post asking for help or recommendations for Ruslan and was blown away by all of you! You all came out of the woodwork with ideas and offers to reach out to doctors on Ruslan’s behalf. Many of you even told me that you had been following us for a long time but this was your first time reaching out- and I was so so glad to hear from you! It was really encouraging to see how many of you deeply care for our boys. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
I am so pleased and thankful and EXCITED to share with you that a medical team and hospital in California have agreed to treat Ruslan’s foot for free!! It’s really going to happen! I’m still a bit in shock and I’m not sure I’ll believe it’s real until Jed and Ruslan land there in California, but believe it or not, we are moving forward in faith and doing the work on our end to make it happen. It’s so exciting, right?
Who? How? WHAAAAAAAT? I know you are dying to know the details. Sit tight and I’ll tell you. ☺️ Just a few days after I wrote the post asking for help I got an email from a super kind lady in Oregon who had been following us for years, but whom I’ve never met. We have a mutual friend ❤️ from my days working as a nurse in Oregon. She told me that she has a brother who works as an anesthesiologist at a hospital in California. She read our blog, reached out to him, and right away he was interested in helping. The anesthesiologist asked his friend, the surgeon if he was on board and he also agreed! Then that most kind anesthesiologist wrote to the hospital and the hospital answered YES! In a matter of just a few weeks, God put us in contact with the kindest people with the most generous hearts and it’s a go!
I waited a couple of weeks to share this with you because we had to figure out the issue of getting Ruslan a visa. I wanted that situation somewhat in hand before I spilled the beans. Right now, during wartime, the US embassy in Kyiv is not issuing any visas. That means that we had to find an embassy in another country at which to schedule a visa interview. Embassies always prioritize the residents of the country where the embassy is located and on most of the websites, it said that nonresidents would need to wait until 2024 for a visa interview. We really, really didn’t want to wait a year for this surgery when we have doctors and a hospital willing and able to do it whenever we’re ready! But, we worked it out and Ruslan has a visa appointment in July in Bucharest, Romania. We will need to move the date out a bit, but at least we are in their system! That was the most important part. The tentative plan as of now is for Ruslan and Jed to travel to Romania for the visa in late July or early August and then fly straight from Bucharest to California for the surgery. Once the surgery is done Ruslan will be non-weight bearing for 6 weeks. So, all together Jed and Rus will likely be gone for about 2 months. As our new anesthesiologist friend wrote, “Oh what a great adventure we are starting together” 🙂
How you can help: Jed and Ruslan will be in the Santa Cruz area for the surgery. Do any of you live near there? We do have lodging covered for Jed and Ruslan for the time they will be in California. What we definitely need help with is a car. If any of you have contacts in the area who might have an extra car that Jed could use for several weeks in early August it would be a great help. Also, any help with meals or groceries would also be just a wonderful gift. Those first few days back at the guest lodging with Rus will likely be quite difficult and any support any of you could offer Jed would be a blessing to him and Ruslan both. If you live in the area and would like to help in any way, we would love to hear from you! You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you again to everyone who went for bat for Ruslan over the past month. We are really thankful for every effort made on his behalf. We don’t take it lightly and are honored that you would speak out. I promise to keep you updated on this journey toward wholeness for our Rus. Praise God for his great love for our boys!