Foster Adoption Realities

We love our children.

It is hard to believe that the 4 year old girl we first met is going to be 6 in a few short months! When they were adopted we gave each kiddo a choice on whether they would keep their middle name or take one we chose for them. Our little girl was very excited to change hers to Joy. And there is a reason we picked that name. This girl brings a lot of joy and smiles to those around her. She loves helping other people and making things for them.

Our middle boy who practically shares the same birthday as me is 8 now. He is a lot like his momma in his spontaneity, adventuress heart, and out of the box thinking. He gets a kick out of being so much like me in this way. 🙂 This kiddo has a heart of gold. We have often witnessed him seek to comfort a child at the bus stop who is crying, or reach out to someone who seems left out.

Our oldest is 10 1/2! Wow! This funny boy  continues to remind us often that he is a pre-teen. 🙂 This guy can do things I can’t even wrap my mind around. He is much more like his daddy in this. He loves doing scientific type things like snap circuits…I tried to do it with him and boy was I lost! And funny?! Well, actually the correct phraseology would be “punny.” He can make up puns like no one else I have met!

Yes, we love our children, and we are grateful that they love us too. That said, don’t let that fool you into thinking that adoption is easy….for us or for our kiddos. We have often heard, “Your kids must be so grateful to have you.” Though well intentioned and having some truth to it, let’s look at it from a different point of view. Having us in their lives means they were taken away from their biological family. They were ripped out of the home they knew since birth, never to be able to go back. Even though it wasn’t a good place for them to be, it still hurt so much. In fact, it still hurts our kids so much. Can you imagine for a moment what that would feel like?

Some of the hardness for us comes with parenting three children from hard places…children who have much trauma…children who are high-needs in many ways. For our first 9 months together, we were woken up probably 12-15 times a night, and only lived off of 2 hours of sleep. Bedtime routines would take us hours because we had to stay in our kiddo’s rooms until they finally fell asleep. I had to sleep on a hard couch for months because one of our children was too scared for me to sleep in our bedroom. We had to sleep with every light on upstairs or else you would hear screaming and no one would be able to fall asleep. And these are just the sleep issues we have faced.

Adoption is a hard road. It is a beautiful road, but very difficult nonetheless. It is a road in which you often get to come face to face with your own selfishness. It is a road that needs to be about the kid’s, not about meeting some need of your own. It is a road of sacrifice. And it is a road that we would still take, even with all that we have gone through.

-Lori

 

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8 thoughts on “Foster Adoption Realities

  1. Love your post Doug and you are very special people —-the love and care you have shown these children are evidence of the love and care they will receive from two great parents —- I feel special to know you –take care and God Bless

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I LOVE this post. As a family with infertility issues, (now going on 17 years) we have heard many (hopefully) well meaning individuals tell us to ‘just adopt’. We absolutely LOVE adoption, have a heart for adoption, have studied for and still hope to eventually do so… but chronic illness became a road block, as well as finances, then focusing on rebuilding health lead to having one child after 15 years of struggle and loss. But illness and cost are still an issue.
    For us, if we “just adopted”, it never would have covered our own heart ache of our losses, years trying and failing… to attempt to make another child live that, especially if they have their own loss and trauma is not fair to the child, and not conducive to thriving as a whole.
    At the start of wanting kids, we’ve been open to all paths, and had my health journey turned out differently maybe something else would also have played out.
    I want the three of us to be ready to meet the needs of anyone we graft in with us, and we may be closer each day, but it still doesn’t seem like we’d be able to meet everyone’s needs and that’s a hard waiting pattern to be in.
    I recently started having a lot of symptoms again and one of my doctors (again) ‘prescribed’ pregnancy to treat it. It’s a painfully laughable situation when you’re dealing with infertility and yet you’re ‘supposed’ to get pregnant to treat it. The anxiety it causes, wondering is I can, or if my symptoms will spiral again… and if we do succeed in bringing in a newborn does that delay other things? Or will trying lead to more loss, and more grief and illness?
    I know no one will ever be fully ready to embrace foster adoption and that those who have a heart for it should still pursue it. But in reading your comment “It is a road that needs to be about the kid’s, not about meeting some need of your own.” I feel a great deep sense of grace to self that praying and supporting other families as I can is OK to be all we do for now. It is important to hear it written as such because while making a family grow is always a beautiful thing. Being intentional and knowledgeable, having support and resources, and doing things in God’s timing for all involved is what will lead to proper growth and unity with parents and children.
    I promise I won’t respond with infertility stories every time I read the foster adopt posts, but that one particular sentence really spoke to me.
    I love being a part of seeing these children grow and thrive in your home. It blesses me, and encourages me. No family is ever easy. But being real about it all, I wish more people were so open and honest.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings my friend! Grateful for that! I too am so glad you get to be a part of seeing our children grow. Thanks for all the ways you love and care for our family!

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