I have been trying for months to get Jemberu, who is a U.S citizen, a passport. We applied for it the day after Halloween and we were warned it might take up to 6 weeks. After two months with no passport, I checked his status online and learned it was 'being processed'. Cool. I checked again a month later. Again, 'being processed'. Okay. A few weeks later I called, and was told again that it was "being processed". I told the man at US passport services how long I had been waiting. He connected me to the Boston office where it was 'being processed'. The woman in Boston told me that she had sent me a letter months ago (liar) alerting me that they needed his green card, as additional identification, to finish processing his application. I told her I would be happy to send it, and mentioned to her that it had an incorrect birthday for Jemberu on it. I explained that in Ethiopia, Jemberu was assigned a birthday when he arrived at the orphanage. But while in Ethiopia, while meeting a member of his birth family, we were able to find out his actual birthday. When his adoption was finalized, his birthday was legally changed and I had already sent them the court documents to prove this.
I was informed that the birthday on the passport had to be the same one as the one on his green card. 'Okay, what do I do?' 'Contact USCIS for a new green card.' This apparently was my only option unless I wanted Jemberu's passport to have an incorrect birthday. So for hundreds of dollars, I applied for Jemberu to get a new green card, explaining to USCIS about the birthday. I wait months for Jemberu to get an appointment at a local(ish) USCIS office for biometrics, which is fingerprints and a photo. Today was that day. I took him out of school and brought all of the required paper work. We were brought into the office of an immigration official to explain ourselves.
Officer: "This is very unusual, the little guy is already a citizen you say?"
Me: "Yes he became a citizen when his adoption was finalized in the US."
Jemby: "I am not a little guy."
Me: " I was told by a US Passport agent that this is the only way my son can get an accurate passport"
Officer: " I don't know if he actually can be issued a new green card, the little guy is already a US citizen and we don't give green cards to US citizens."
Jemby: "I. AM. NOT. A. LITTLE. GUY."
Me: silent trying not to lose my temper, trying to find new words to explain this situation to the officer
Officer: "Just calm down."
Me: "I haven't said anything yet!"
He lets me know we can go ahead with the biometrics but he can't make any promises that they will issue a new card to the little guy.
Jemby and I get in the car for the long ride home and he starts talking. A lot. About nothing. I asked him if we could please have a little quiet time. He talked some more. I said "Hush Jemby." He said "Hush is a bad word and I am telling dad you said it"
Me: Hush is not a bad word.
Jemby: What about "Oh my God?"
Me: "That is a bad word in our family. Please say 'Oh my gosh' instead"
Jemby: "What about penis?"
Me : "That's not a bad word."
Finally silence. Jemby fell asleep for about 15 beautiful minutes. He woke up too soon and the silence was broken.
Jemby: "Can we stop for ice cream?"
Jemby: "You don't have to be such a penis!"
Anyway...that is how I reached my wit's end today.