Countless times, when finding out that my children have all been adopted from foster care, people have commented on how lucky these children are to have found someone to love them and care for them. On a couple of occasions, the comments have been made directly to my children!
Lucky? I’m not sure lucky is the best way to describe the circumstances under which we came together. As most children who enter foster care, my children experienced either abuse or neglect. They experienced a loss right from the start when leaving their birth parents. Many of them had moves within the foster care system after leaving their birth home and before finding their way to my home. Life taught a couple of my children to expect change and instability. Even when the time came that they were to be adopted and have a permanent, loving family it was difficult on a couple to comprehend how that might be.
Meanwhile, my husband and I had been married for four years. We had hoped to start a family and live happily ever after. I am not one to sit around and hope that things would happen. After a year or so, we started the fertility treatment process. When that got taxing emotionally and financially, we decided that being parents was really what we wanted. We began the process of becoming foster parents with the hope that someday we might adopt. Here is where the two stories merge.
I won’t even pretend that life has always been peachy since our children were delivered into our lives. Birth parent visitations were sometimes tough. Termination of parental rights from their birth parents was difficult as several of our children were old enough to understand what was happening. School has brought challenges. Emotional, mental, and behavioral challenges have kept us from ever being bored. Children become teenagers, and that is challenge enough to tax even the strongest of people. However, a day doesn’t pass that I don’t get on my knees and thank a loving Father in Heaven that when circumstances left my precious children in need of parents to guide and direct them toward adulthood, we were able to fill that role.
Lucky them? Blessed us!