Category Archives: Special Needs Children

Adoption…. Fostering……When the paperwork creates overwhelm

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I remember very well the first time I was handed that huge wad of paperwork.  Talk about overwhelm!   Where did I start?  Lots of things ran through my head.

Ah, how much do I want to do this?

Surely there is an easier way?

What if I don’t measure up?

Why are they talking about fostering?

I just want to adopt, OK?

What do you mean parenting classes?

And so on, and so on.  But, for me, for us, the call was greater than the paperwork.  And there is a ton.  Not for the feint of heart, but worth every minute of the process.

The fingerprints, the home study, all those questions about you and how you think, what you think, DO you think.

In my day, some eighteen odd years ago, and then again about eight years ago, it varied between agencies.  And those have changed now too.  There are a lot more private ones over your local Department Of Children’s Services where we first went for our first training.

And the support or should I say WHAT support?

It was no wonder that after the first class some dropped out until week ten and only the die-hards were left.  We were among them.  You see, we cried in the first session and it only became more heart wrenching after that.  If I didn’t come because I wanted to, I would have stayed because of the need that was before my eyes and my heart.

I can honestly say to all of you who are wondering if this journey is for you, you will never look back again at the world the same way.  You will be forever changed even if you never foster, you will now know.

You will be now be informed

Fostering is not on my horizon at the moment, I won’t say never because when I do, that becomes a challenge to God.  But, I do want to encourage those who have that small voice in their minds, and their hearts are breaking for a child, to be led into this magical, heartbreaking, joyous, sad, meaningful, desolate, rewarding, misunderstood adventure.

Your blessing will be greater than you could ever imagine in ways you could never imagine

You will carry the joy and shed the tears for the ones you cared for, and the ones you are still caring for.  You will never forget their faces, and you will carry them in your heart forever.  You will suddenly realize this is the biggest achievement in your life and the life of someone who really needed you, more than you needed them.

Your heart may get broken a little, but you will put tiny broken hearts back together, piece by piece, a little at a time until they are whole again.

And if, or when they go from your life, you will hold memories, photos, testimonies that will remind you of why you did this.  Why you loved a child unconditionally, without restrictions or parameters, contracts or conditions.  You will never forget them, and trust me, they will never forget you.

It is a lonely life sometimes, the one of the foster/adoptive parent.  One that is not understood, one sometimes overlooked, taken for granted.

 But, that is the very reason I CHOSE to be Life Coach to foster/adoptive parents.  It is a journey not everyone will understand, but I do. You see I fostered over fifty children, and adopted eight.  I know what you face every day, I know what you feel, what you worry about and what you need in the way of encouragement.

Contact me for any reason.  I am here.  I offer a free session to anyone on this journey.  Just put your name in the email sign up and I will contact you.

I am not a perfect person, I pick up the

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Letting Your First Foster Child Go

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As vividly as I remember my first two arriving, I remember just as clearly the day the first one left.

The first of many, not to be the last, or forgotten.

This one went with joy!

I had sworn of course that I was not going back to diapers but, there I was with twins, and double diapers.  As usual the call came late in the afternoon, and this time he was a baby, eleven weeks old.  Not sure, I needed or wanted that, but there was no-where else for him to go.

He had an older sister and a a brother who were going to a young childless couple not far from where we lived.  But they had never had a baby, and this tiny one needed a little extra help, or that was the story.

I can tell you he needed MORE than a little extra help.

He arrived with a Child Protective Services worker as it was after hours.  He had dark hair that seemed to be oiled, a thin face, with large brown eyes that darted here and there.  His mouth seemed too big for his little face and he seemed very underweight.  I wasn’t sure exactly what I had here, but my instincts were, “something is not right”!

He seemed so fragile as I undressed him for a much needed bath.  His little body had hardly any fat on it, no chubby cheeks or rolls that are usual with a baby of this age.  He was agitated and I tried to soothe him, sing to him as I bathed him.  The bath water turned from clear to very dirty and after drying him off,  he was fair with blonde hair!

Comfort and snuggles were needed.  Amazing hubby took care of the twins and the older two at home got dinner together as I rocked this little one and tried to feed him his bottle.  The crying and agitation went on all night.  If I fed him he cried and cried.  I tried every position to hold him, he still cried.

By morning I was at the pediatrician.  By midday I was at the children’s hospital.  His ribs had been broken, he had been severely shaken.  He had gastric reflux, easier to fix that maybe the permanent damage that had been done to his body, and his brain.

I prayed over him, and for him again and again as I waited, just as we had done for him the night before.  This was my first experience of physical abuse, and in a child not even three months old, my heart was breaking for him.

Well, the story became a miraculous one.  After a full body scan to determine extent of injury and if there were any more breaks in his body, I was told they could not believe that his brain was intact.  Perfectly normal, but his ribs would wear large callouses where they had been broken.

He should have been permanently brain injured, but through prayer and the belief in healing, he was going to be fine.

I said goodbye to our little one three months later.  He was chubby, smiling, laughing, cooing, in fact a delight.  He went to be with the couple who had his older siblings.  I was so full of happiness because they told us they could not have their own baby and never thought they would be able to experience that wonderful joy!

He grew up to be amazing, and the young couple?  Well, they ended up getting pregnant against all odds, not once, but twice.  They gave not expecting and received and reaped the fruits of their love and labor.

Today, many of us are too busy to notice the growing number of children that stay in the foster system, some with no hope of a forever home, and some who cannot be found homes because they maybe a little “scary”.

If this tugs at your heart and you want to know more, or you have a child that you need to talk with someone about, please contact me.  I always offer a free mini session to see whether coaching is for you.

Until next time, next story, have a wonderful day and remember, “It’s better to build a child, than try to fix an adult” (Dave Thomas).

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IGNITE YOUR PASSION_FIND YOUR PURPOSE

The other side of adoption

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I fostered some fifty plus children, yet did not always meet their birth parents.  Some visited, some did not.  Each child was special and for the “token” subsidy per day, well I was not making money here.  I didn’t do it for that reason.  I did it because I walked into a case workers office one Friday afternoon and saw two little boys in desperate need of care, love, and a home.

Some of the kids that came across my path were etched upon my mind forever.  The baby who came into care, with dark brown hair, and olive skin, but upon bathing was blonde and fair.  A product of a  mom who had issues and oiled this baby so much he was unrecognizable.  But, that was the least of it.  He had been shaken, had the residue of broken bones on his ribs, and only through prayer, was normal.

Then there was the baby whose father had swung her around the room, he was intolerant of her crying.  Her femur was broken, she was in a body cast.  She was four months old, on the breast, arrived at my home at one in the morning and did not understand what a bottle was.  An angry, frightened, baby who wanted her mother.  She did go back, after much counseling that I think that father reneged on.

The little boy who came that was deaf.  The case worker had said (on a Friday afternoon of course at after 3p.m.) “Well he is hearing impaired,”.  I said “How much?”.  The week end did not go well other than I knew where this neglected child should go, but his older sister? And the baby who the five year old sister was a mother to?  Oh, so many issues and not enough parents or resources to deal with.

My adorable, lovable darling red haired child who arrived when she was about 23 months of age, and was a virtual triplet to my boys, the one I fell in love with but knew she need more than I could give.  I gave her to the adoptive parent of my choice, because that was what was best for my darling little child who had suffered more than I could give back to  her.  I love her to this day and am glad to say we are still in contact.  That is the power of adoption without judgment or remorse.

My twin boys seemed like a dream compared to most of this, but my turn was coming.  After so many children, the ones God sent to me to keep were complicated.  Autism, cerebral palsy, learning disabilities, bi-polar, OCD, ADHD, the list goes on.  I call it the Alphabet syndrome.  But, while all  of that was part of who I adopted, it was also, or partly,  amongst my own birth children.

DO NOT EVER BE AFRAID OF SPECIAL NEEDS!  IF YOU ARE CALLED YOU WILL BE GIVE EVERY SKILL TO COPE WITH THIS.

Some of you out there have special needs kids that you did not adopt, they are yours.  Well, I’ll tell you a secret.  My bio kids are all special needs, that’s why I fostered, that’s why I adopted.  Do not ever be afraid.  If fostering or adopting is on your mind, it is for a reason.   You are privileged, you are called, you are about to be blessed in so many ways you cannot imagine.  And if you are reading this needing the help for your own birth children, then I am there also.  Please sign up on my email, let me know how I can help and I am there for you with a 15 minute free life coaching session.

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BELIEVE IN