What was your family dynamic before adoption/foster care?
We were a young couple with one biological 5 year old son. My husband and I were both working fulltime positions.
What is your family dynamic now?
We have a 5 year old biological son, Ethan, and adopted son, Asher. We’ve had him 18 weeks and I’m 16 weeks pregnant with a baby girl. Unplanned by us but not God ☺
How did you make the decision to adopt/foster?
I was told at the age of 15 that I would not be able to conceive based on severe endometriosis and other issues. I had several family members who were adopted and wanted to adopt as well, even from a young age. My husband’s family fostered children during his early years of childhood and he has 2 younger brothers who were adopted from Guatemala. Marty was a missionary in Eastern Europe and work in orphanages and had always had a heart for adoption.
After suffering a miscarriage in 2010, we felt like God was moving our hearts to adopt.
What was the training/paperwork process like for you?
The training was very helpful. We read up on everything we could pertaining to adoption. Promise 686 through Perimeter church was very helpful.
The paperwork was very time consuming. At times it was frustrating because the answers that were asked were repetitive. Our FBI background checks were only supposed to take 4-6 weeks for us to get back. Unfortunately they were lost by the FBI and it took almost 5 months for us to get the background check finished. We could not move forward in the adoption process until they had these back.
How long did you “wait” for your child(ren)?
From start to finish- researching adoption agencies, choosing one and going through training= 2 ½ years.
After placement, what’s the one thing that you learned in the pre-placement phase that you were the most grateful for?
That the birthmother was not someone that we needed to be scared about. I think we’d always heard that you couldn’t have a relationship with her because of her wanting him back or confusion for him. We are lucky in the fact that we have a semi open adoption and the birthmother still wants to be a part of his life. We are thankful that Asher will be able to know about his birth family.
After placement, what’s the one thing no one told you that you wish you had known?
How natural it feels to have this child in our family. We’d always heard horror stories about children not bonding and I was scared that would happen to us. The minute he was placed in my arms on placement day, I couldn’t love him any more than the day my biological son was placed in my arms after birth.
What was your biggest surprise about adjustment as a family?
We are very blessed. Asher hasn’t felt like an adjustment, just an addition. Everyone including Asher and his brother Ethan, bonded extremely quickly. There were no temper tantrums, just love. For that we are so very thankful.
What one piece of wisdom from your experience can you share with other potential adoptive families?
Do not be afraid to love. Do not be afraid to step forward based on financial reasons. If this is a desire that God has placed in your heart, he will make a way. We live on the lower end of middle class income and were able to save the full amount of Asher’s adoption on our salary alone. The adoption process has grown me in my walk with Christ more than any other process. It was a time of learning, and growing and most of all trusting that my heavenly Father would give me the desires of my heart. He taught me to give up control and to trust in HIS timing.