Beauty Revived has joined with Adoption.com to bring you the 50 Most Inspiring Adoption Stories. We have found 50 amazing photographers with big hearts to donate a session to tell the story of an inspiring adoption story in their community.
Photography for this session by Eliza Moyer Photography Website
My adoption journey began early in 2012 while I was volunteering at a local hospital in the NICU as a “baby cuddler.” I would go in during a shift change to hold and soothe the crying babies so the nurses could change shifts easily. I began to learn about each baby and how many of them were born prematurely due to drug exposure and lack of prenatal care.
I asked one of the nurses what was going to happen when the babies who were exposed to drugs were discharged. She told me that a county social worker would pick them up and take them to a foster home. The nurse then said, “You have a way with these babies. Have you ever considered being a foster parent?” At that moment, I remember thinking, “I can be a foster parent. If I can help these babies in the hospital, there is no reason I could not do this in my own home.”
That night I went home and researched foster parenting. That is when I learned about Aspiranet, a local foster family agency. I called them the next day and was scheduled for foster parent training the following week. I was certified in late August 2012.
On October 3rd, 2012, I received a phone call regarding a 9-month-old baby who cried excessively and had feeding issues who needed to be placed immediately. Daisy was placed with me on October 4, 2012. It became clear that Daisy had attachment and trust issues, so I slowly and methodically worked to gain her trust.
In January 2013, Daisy’s social worker asked me if I would be willing to adopt Daisy because the county was putting in a recommendation to terminate the birth mother’s parental rights. How could I say no? Daisy needed me, and no one else knew her like I did. Not only did Daisy need me, I needed her.
For the next 13 months, there were multiple court hearings. I was not prepared for the emotional roller coaster ride I went on. The waiting and unknown were hard at times, but I knew I needed to care for Daisy and trusted that the system would do what was in her best interest.
On February 12, 2014, I received a phone call from my social worker that changed my life. Daisy’s birth parents’ parental rights had been terminated. I cried both tears of happiness and tears of sadness. I knew this decision was what was best for Daisy, but I was sad that the situation had to end like this. I would never wish for anyone to lose their children. It also saddened me that Daisy and her sisters would never live together again. But that sadness helped drive me to continue scheduling their sibling visits and help foster an organic relationship between the three sisters.
Before February ended, both Daisy’s birth father and mother appealed the decision. We now had to wait for the appeal process to begin. I was informed it could take up to a year for the appellate court to make their decision. Now the emotional roller coaster started up again. During this time, Daisy was not thriving medically or developmentally. She had a gastronomy tube placed in June of 2014 to help her receive the proper nutrition she needed. I thought about the appeal process daily. My care and love for Daisy grew, even though I knew there was a chance that she could return to her birth parents if the appellate court overturned the ruling. On September 22, 2014, the appellate court affirmed the decision, and it was then I knew that Daisy would forever be a part of my family.
After 924 days of being in foster care, Daisy was officially adopted on April 3, 2015. On this day, she and her sisters were all adopted to their forever families. Three sisters entered the system together and three sisters left the system together. As hard and emotional as our journey has been, I would do it all over again because it led me to my beautiful daughter.
Many people are led to believe that you have to be married and own a home to adopt. Neither instance is true. Being a single foster parent was challenging, but it is possible. I never felt that Daisy’s social workers questioned whether I was the right parent for her. In fact, they all told me they believed Daisy was placed with me for a reason. I am a believer in fate and know in my heart that becoming Daisy’s mother was meant to be. I encourage all family types to consider fostering to adopt. The number of parents or the size of your house is does not matter. Sharing your love is what matters the most.