Two youngsters pounded on the locked door, pleading, “Mom, open it, we’re freezing…”

I rushed from the bus stop to the entrance since it was so chilly outdoors. And there was a similar scene in front of me: the neighbor’s children, dressed in outdated demi-season coats, couldn’t go into their flat.

– Mom, open it, we’re freezing…

– What, she fell asleep again and she can’t hear?

Vika, eight, sighed deeply and nodded. Her four-year-old brother was weeping and in tears.

– Please come to me. Keep warm and obtain some food.

The boys followed me up the stairwell to the second floor.

It wasn’t the first time a drunken mother sent her children “walking” so she could resume her personal life with her roommate in a leased one-room flat. And everything ended the same way: a tipsy couple slept off in a cozy bed, while the children stayed on the stairs.

I had to leave them to stay the night once because we couldn’t get through. So, in the morning, I received a reprimand from this terrible mother, who, you see, whisked her children away without warning.

It’s probably time to start complaining before anything bad happens. It’s summer, but it’s winter-winter here, and children and garments don’t have typical warm clothes, so they’ll still freeze…

That evening, the children and I were unable to get access to the flat, despite Vika’s claim that she had seen Uncle Vova, her mother’s roommate, leave the entryway and go elsewhere while she and her brother were still walking. It felt weird to me, but I reasoned that the girl may be wrong because she was seeing from a distance.

Mother, too, did not open the door in the morning.

I had to contact the cops and get an administrative leave at work. The cops drove for quite some time. They had to smash down the door when they arrived. Galina, Vika and Sasha’s mother, lay in bed and did not move, but she was still alive. The cops dispatched an ambulance.

Galina was diagnosed with a stroke or a heart attack by the doctor who came. It was evident that something had occurred to the lady the night before, but because medical aid had not been supplied promptly, there were now very few chances to rescue the mother of the children.

The wife was transported to the hospital, and the children were permitted to accompany me for the time being. I had to testify for a long time, sign various paperwork, and assist in the creation of Galina’s roommate’s identikit.

The authorities had to find this man in order to determine whether he had caused his common-law wife any injury, which had resulted in her current situation.

– Aunt Tanya, and if Mom dies, would you keep us with you indefinitely? I’m not interested in going to an orphanage… I saw on TV that it’s really dangerous for youngsters there…

Vika stared at me with pitying eyes, and I was at a loss for words. I felt bad for these kids, but I wasn’t doing well myself. I sighed for the first time lately, when my only kid graduated from college and found a job.

Despite the fact that he currently lives in another city and supports himself, he will most likely marry soon and will want assistance with an apartment and future grandkids.

All of these sentiments were stated to the investigator, who gave me guardianship when he informed me that Galya’s neighbor had died.

– Tatyana Petrovna, the state will assist you in this noble act. You will receive a survivor’s annuity for each child, and the foster child allowance is currently not too awful; you can handle it.

I was still scared, and I needed to talk to my kid about it. I phoned him that evening and informed him what had happened.

– Mom, make your own decision, but if I were you, I would agree. Knowing you, I imagine that if you don’t, you’ll be haunted by doubts that you didn’t do the proper thing. Nerves will pass, and you will get unwell again, but I require a healthy mother!

– Convinced! Come and meet your new family.

Vika and Sasha stayed at my side. State assistance is truly enough for me to keep them, and my life has grown more exciting and diversified with these men as if I’ve gone back in time to when my adult son was still a child.

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