A little over 5 years ago I started looking for a foster/adoption placement agency. I began my search where many of us do… on the internet. I was searching for an option that was faith based, and family focused. I found FamilyLink. I have been very blessed to work with them with the placement of each, and every, child that has come to my home. They have been supportive of my growing family.
I received my license on Tuesday, July 27th, and received my first placement on July 29th 2010. They placed a 5 year old non-English speaking girl and 4 month old twin girls with me. I come from a big family, and thought I was ready to be a mom. I was a 38 years old single girl, with a good job, a family friendly vehicle, and a nice house with bunk beds and a big back yard. I can tell you that first night I was a little overwhelmed when everyone left my house, and I was all alone in charge of these 3 precious gifts from God.
I went on a rollercoaster ride of emotions over the next 24 months. I adopted Samantha, Lucy and Molly in December 2011. In September of 2011 their newborn brother, Jack, was placed in my home, and in October 2012 their newborn sister was also placed in our home. I thought life was perfect. In November the baby girl was removed and placed with a biological aunt, and I was sad because this was a sibling to my children, and I didn’t know what the future would look like for her without them, or for them without her, but that is in God’s hands.
When Jack was removed from our home in December and placed back with his father, I won’t lie, I was devastated. This precious little boy who I loved was going “home” to a stranger. I was determined to make the best of the situation. To this day 2 years later I still get Jack every weekend. His Dad and I work hard to make sure our kids have a relationship. This isn’t an ideal situation, or an easy thing to make work. Sometimes it’s inconvenient and difficult to juggle, but I want my kids to have a relationship, and I want Jack to know that no matter what he wasn’t just a kid that lived in my home for a little while, but that he was, and will be, loved in my heart forever.
In February of 2013 Erin (6 at the time) came to live with us. Her story was scary, and tragic, and I said no a number of times. But God kept asking through FamilyLink, and finally I said yes, and Erin came into our family. She was a straight adoption placement, so I didn’t expect the emotional rollercoaster of court and family visits, and I thought it would be “easier”. However, her little life had been filled with so many bad things that the rollercoaster was a bigger, badder ride than I had previously ridden. We had our struggles, and we still do. But we have an understanding no matter what I will love her, and she can stay with us forever, and some days it’s all I can do to keep my promise, and it’s all she can do to believe me, but we get through each day a little stronger. I adopted Erin in December 2013.
In 2014 I received 3 back to back placements of little boys. The first 2 we loved having in our home for 5 to 6 weeks. The first was removed and placed back in a previous foster home, and the second was removed to be placed with his siblings. God is amazing because I believe that he was getting me ready for the little guy that came to live with us in May. “Oliver” adds a little boy to our house full of girls. He’s dirt and cars, and crazy ways. I hope to add him to our little family permanently, but I don’t know the plans God has.
People ask me all the time how I do it… “I love them while I have them because that what God asks of me, and I leave the details up to God because He’s better at them than I could ever dream of being.” I’d adopt 10 more if I could. I live a very full and blessed life because I said yes to a house full of little kids who needed nothing more than someone to love them, and a willingness to love them through whatever life will throw at them. Some days it’s easy, and some days it takes a lot of prayer and determination. But at the end of every day, no matter how hard, I’m glad I said, “Yes, I’ll take them.”