By: Kerrie Olejarz
When we returned to the B&B from the High Commission, we were optimistic that our DNA test would be scheduled over the next few days. I quickly sent off the scanned documents to the DNA company, which of course included all of my big fat Visa card digits. The sooner we had the DNA test, the sooner we could apply for a passport and go home. The next big thing was to work out when we were going home, and make sure our flights were ok, or switch them. It was mandatory that we have a confirmed return ticket to Toronto for Cailyn when requesting the passport, so we spent the rest of the day working this timeline out with our immigration liaison.
Once we had this sorted we made contact with our travel agent to switch our flights, and yep, we were leaving India earlier than expected! It took a while, but we finally found flights home for the three of us, and once again, I handed over all the digits on my Visa card. This day cost us $2200.00, just a drop in the bucket! We also were feeling cash strapped as the bank machines would only sometimes give us cash. We were allowed to take out 10000 INR per day, per card, and Mark spent a lot of days walking from machine to machine, hoping that this would be the one to give us cash. That evening he had luck and we were back in a comfortable position, finally having some emergency cash on hand. We knew that we could apply for Cailyn’s passport the same day as our DNA test, but we would need about 8000 INR ready to hand over to the High Commission to pay all the fees.
When we awoke the next morning, there was an email from the DNA company to the High Commission requesting the DNA test be completed as per our application. I immediately hit “reply all” and let the High Commission know we were ready and gave them our phone number. Within minutes of sending the email, the High Commission called to schedule the appointment for Thursday, and reminded us that none of us could eat or drink for one hour prior to our DNA swab. The appointment was at 1 pm, two days away.
We decided to spend the day at home, just relaxing and enjoying our baby girl. She was so sweet, so easy going. All the dashing around for citizenship appointments, shopping and doctors’ visits did not faze her. We had become fairly comfortable in our routine of boiling water, sterilizing nipples, and hand washing clothes and blankets. The following day we had a scheduled follow up appointment with the paediatrician and the visit was great! Dr T did a thorough exam of Cailyn and reviewed all her blood work results with us. He claimed her 100% medically perfect! We were very pleased with our visit and paid our doctor bill of $20.00 and headed back to the B&B. That evening we double and triple checked all of our passport application paperwork to minimize how much time we would need to spend at the High Commission the next day.
In the evening we were pleasantly surprised to see that Cailyn’s umbilical stump had fallen off and were very excited to give her the first proper bath! We bathed her in the bathroom sink and she seemed to really enjoy it. It was both scary and exciting – dealing with a slippery baby sure is scary the first time, but oh what fun it was to finally have this moment! Of course we snapped lots of pictures of her having her first bath.
Thursday was DNA testing day! We were so looking forward to getting this taken care of, knowing the wait on the results was about a week. We were not concerned about the actual results, just the waiting. Cailyn got all dressed up in a blue and pink outfit ready to head to the Canadian High Commission for her DNA test. Nothing to drink/eat for one hour prior is not an easy task for a baby. We tried very hard to encourage a feed before the cut-off time but no luck, so of course en route to the Commission we started to have a fussy baby. By the time we got in for the swab she was not a happy camper! She took the mouth swab fine, but the thumb print was a whole other story! This was the first time we saw a tear come out of her eye…she was just so upset. The nurse was sympathetic but the task at hand had to be completed. Once she was done, she really enjoyed her bottle. The delay in feeding sure had a ripple effect for the rest of the day with constipation and absolute fussiness. I guess there is a good reason why we try to keep these little ones on a schedule.
We now had to wait about a week for the DNA results and then for the High Commission to start the passport process. We had hoped to have the passport by September 7th, fingers crossed! That evening my buddy Nilesh came over and we had a meal together. I worked with Nilesh in Canada and we have remained in contact since. He is from Hyderabad but his head office is in Gurgon, close to the airport. He brought some beautiful pink girlie gifts for Cailyn which was so generous and sweet. We enjoyed his visit, and were more than ready for some rest after the long day we had just had.