Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Karina - From Daughter to Daughter-in-law

Rejected, neglected, starving and kept from others who loved her was Karina's fate after her abused and beaten mother died. "Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." Matthew 11:28

Karina was the first Borblick foster child who did not come to them through the orphanage. She lived in an extremely dysfunctional family. Her father was a very wealthy businessman with two very wealthy business associates. They were very rich because the business they were in was very illegal and immoral. When Karina was about 11 years old, one of these two associates was killed. This death brought instability to Karina’s family. The father became a very abusive and cruel man to his wife and also to his child. His wife ended up in the hospital and there she died.

After Karina’s father lost his business partner, his money, his business and then his wife, he began to live only for himself. He totally neglected Karina and would leave her at home alone with no money, no food for weeks at a time. To survive, Karina did not go to school but went fishing instead. Sometimes she was able to sell her catch and buy other food. If not, she made fish stew.

She tried going from one relative to another and from one friend to another. They were compassionate for a day or two or a visit or two but eventually they would turn her away. Her grandparents on her mother’s side, at first, wanted to take Karina to live with them. But when she would go spend time with them, her father would come looking for her. He would beat on the door and the windows and yell at them as though they were the enemy and trying to take his daughter away from him. This frightened them very much. One night around 11pm, Karina came to her grandmother again. But this time her grandmother told her that she could not allow her to come into the house. Because of the scene her father had caused on previous occasions, the grandparents no longer wanted to risk having their granddaughter with them. This was a very, very sad realization for Karina.

The government would not have helped these grandparents even if they had had the courage to ask for help. Because the father had not been identified as unfit to parent and no social worker had been involved, he still had the legal right to control Karina’s life. So there appeared to be no solution to her problem. One hope was that the second business associate of her father, who had become a Christian, might be able to help. He took pity on her and from time to time he would care for her. But he was also afraid of what her father might do.

Eventually a friend of Sergey Borblick told him about this girl and her terrible circumstances. During a drive into the city one day, this friend offered to introduce him to Karina. Sergey agreed. Nobody in the Borblick family expected their husband/father to come home with a daughter that evening but that is exactly what Sergey did. When God touches the hearts of these two people, they are promptly obedient and Karina came to live with the family. Because they were getting very familiar with the bureaucratic system of becoming foster parents and knew exactly who would help them do the necessary paperwork, they began this lengthy process within the next few days.

Eventually, Karina’s father discovered where she was and came looking for her. At first, he came with a limp and a stick to help him walk explaining that he had been in a serious accident at his work and had been in the hospital for two weeks. He explained that this was why he was not at home when they took Karina and why he could not get in touch with her to explain what had happened to him. Sergey and Lena did not believe his story and Karina did not want to go with him. Then, he began acting the same way he had with Karina’s grandparents, banging on the door and windows, shouting and yelling, even going to the neighbors looking for support for his accusation that they, the Borblicks, were using these children to make money. The neighbors, however, knew Sergey and Lena very well and just laughed at his accusations. Finally, he gave up and angrily stomped off even forgetting to limp! He tried several more times but Karina always said, “No!” she did not want to go back to live with him. Eventually, he quit coming.

The first few months that Karina was with the Borblicks, she would have nightmares and wake up crying. Lena would rush into her and comfort her until she fell back to sleep. In the morning, there was no memory of these bad dreams. These were difficult months for Karina as far as her studies were concerned. Because she had missed so much school trying to just stay alive, she was well behind the other children in her class. So Lena worked very hard with her at home and on her homework. This continued through the first year of school. But the following year, all the hard work paid off and Karina finished the next school year with very good marks. She went on to graduate from high school as an honors student. She then graduated from technical school with practical marketing as her specialty. She completed that with excellence as well.

Then it was time for her to go to university. Karina was the first Borblick child that the Young Adult Orphan Discipling Ministry (YAODM) supported for her university studies. She attends a school in Donesk, about two hours drive from Mariupol, and has marketing as her major. She is able to attend as a correspondent student and only needs to actually go to the university once a semester for exams.

In due time, Karina and the Borblick’s only natural son, Prohar, fell in love and were married in June of 2009. Prohar, who is now 25, had been working and living independently in Mariupol while Karina was being raised in his family home. They are expecting the first Borblick grandchild in October, 2010. For this reason, Karina has taken a leave of absence from her university studies but plans to return next year to complete them. She and Prohar are living with Sergey and Lena while a house that Lena inherited from her step-father is being renovated for them.

This is certainly a Cinderella story and one that Sergey and Lena have been blessed to receive from the Lord. With so many of their foster children choosing to live a life independent of their leadership and parental guidance, this daughter who has become a daughter-in-law is truly a reward from God for all their obedience and sacrificial love.

1 comment:

hannah singer said...

sweet sweet story, praise the lord!