Bureaucracy is a beast and a burden.
Bureaucracy is even hard to spell (I always have to google it), so naturally it is even more complicated to be embroiled in. Now that we have decided to move back to Chile, we are just starting those pesky little issues of paperwork, that we now fully admit, we should have done years ago—like register our marriage (so that it is recognized by Chile).
Though we have a Chilean Consulate a 2.5 hour drive from us, from what we have gathered, we are supposed to register the marriage in the consulate that has jurisdiction over the state where we got married (which is San Francisco since we got married in Oregon). That, of course, started a panic—how can we pay for an unplanned trip? do we both go or just one (depends on how we want to register the marriage)? What to do with the kids?
Dealing with that panic, we discovered that the document we were given when we got married, is purely ornamental… not an official legal document. So I had to figure out how to get a copy of our legal marriage license.
I asked one woman if we could just register it in Chile, she said yes. When I asked another woman she said it can’t be done in Chile. Of course, to get my visa, apparently we have to do it anyway, so that’s that.
We also have to register the kids, so that they can officially be considered Chilean. Since the kids were born in Texas, we have to register them at the consulate here. Though it is not standard practice, the consulate here offered to let us sign for our marriage registration and then dispatch it to SF, if I could get the consulate in SF to agree to accept it. (We have to show them our marriage license anyway to register the kids.) The woman in SF told me (very curtly and unhappily) that it should not be done that way but that if I could arrange it with the consulate here, then so be it.
It is going to take months...
I have to start gathering my own Visa-required documents, such as an FBI background check which required me going to the Department of Public Safety and getting my fingerprints taken. Good times… especially with two kids running around.
Plus I had to take G in to her 4-year well-check. She was so excited that she got to go to the Doctor because she hasn’t gone in a long time, but always comes when I take Nico. She had to get a couple booster shots. She hadn’t had a shot in probably two years, so though I told her it would hurt a lot, like a bee sting, she was totally unprepared for the pain. She was so pissed!...and proceeded to shriek like a banshee for a good while. It was much worse than getting shots for a younger one—they are so much more easily distracted by cheap toys, or juice, or oh, look! Goldfish! G was just furious! Now she keeps saying that she doesn’t want to go the Doctor any more.