Tag Archives: Relationships

What do YOU want to know about Fostering, or Adoption?

Somehow, over the last day or so, I was reminded of what I needed as a new, or even seasoned, foster parent.

I guess it was the training at my church.

Brought back so many memories but so many questions as well.

I knew nothing back then.

I just had a big desire in my heart to help a child in need.

My desire overcame my fear.

I’m sure you relate.

It’s pretty scary to take that first step.

But, when that desire to be a foster, or a foster to adopt parent is in your heart, your desire dial is about a ten.

Being truthful, my fear was so nearly greater than my desire to help a child.

I deliberated, or contemplated adopting, never fostering, for some six or seven years.

Fear dial vs desire dial.

Ok dial?

Like fear 1-10.  Desire 1-10.

Your desire will  overcome your fear if you let it.

So many let fear rule.

I nearly did.  In fact right up to the day I fostered my first two kids, I let fear rule.

Why did I change my mind?

Well, it came down to what was in my heart..

I wanted to help “lost” children.

Those nobody even knew about, let alone cared about.

I thought I was in this for the ethnic kids who had trouble being placed or adopted.

God changed my mind.

It’s not about ethnicity, it’s about the child, or in my case children.

I was so caught up in no-one wanted the ethnic kids, I could have missed the children God ordained for me.

Funny thing?  I have kids of all ethenticities.

I just didn’t focus on that.

I focused on the need.

I ended up with three sets of twins.

Well, that was a need not able to be fulfilled by many.

If you continue to have fear over so many issues regarding fostering, or foster to adopt, your fear dial  is overwhelming your desire dial.

Your fear is dialing on a scale of 1-10 more than your desire is dialing on a scale of 1-10.

Where do you want to be?

Fear comes from the unknown.

I can help you with that.

Do you need to talk to someone who has been here done that?

Well, I can help you with that,

Go here, if you would like to talk.

Catch you next time!

 

 

A Seizure in the middle of nowhere?

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So, I have a couple of kids who have epileptic seizures.

Scary, but I know who, maybe when, never where.

I have a birth mom to four who is epileptic.

Needs meds to this day.

I have two out of four that I know are epileptic.

I know they have an older sibling who is also.

So, driving down the road, when I hear ” she’s having a seizure”

I expect it to be the known two, not the unknown.

My miracle child who has beaten all odds, like not walking, not talking, not learning, a brain bleed, a leg brace supposed to be forever, is having her first seizure in the back of our airport shuttle in the middle of nowhere and I don’t know why?

I am shocked!

I have forgotten everything I know about seizures because she doesn’t do this!!

I am in full on A type personality mode of “you will come out of this” and now!!

I am not patient!  I am not thinking!  I am in panic mode!

I forget the positioning.  I forget that this is temporary, she will come out.

I forget to soothe.  I forget everything, because I am panicked.

I forget, because the overwhelming love and need to be her everything is not what she needs right now.

I forget because she hasn’t done this before.  She is sixteen.  Although she has a history, she hasn’t presented these symptoms.

I forget because I want to.  I hope and believe all the past issues have gone before me and I don’t have to deal anymore.  But, because of this, I do, and I will.

That same “A” type personality will find out why, what, when and where this could happen.  I will find out what meds are needed, and I will be there when and where every time.

I am reminded of when she was so little, so needing, so unable to even let me know what she wanted, and that is what a seizure is like. In the midst, they don’t know, they can’t tell, can’t express anything that is happening or what they are feeling.

We have more happening here than a seizure or epilepsy history, we have diagnosed Cerebral Palsy, and a brain bleed.  I don’t for one minute think we will not overcome this because knowledge is power and we sure have than on our side.

So, I am encouraging you to see the light through the darkness when all seems like it is crashing to something unexpected

I know my fighter, daughter, teenager is an overcomer.  She has proved this already, she will prove this again.  I have no doubts.

It’s me that struggles through these valleys only to see God on the mountain top, calling me, and telling me I can climb to any heights he calls me to.

If you are struggling, know, that all things are possible through God who strengthens me.

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When The Honeymoon is over……what next?

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This morning I needed a plumber.

This morning my plumber needed me.

Why?

My plumber had been together with his partner for nineteen years with no children.

Three months ago, he took home his niece and nephew with guardianship, because their drug addicted mother could no longer care for them.

One month ago, being compassionate, caring and trying to do the right thing, he tried to  “help” their mother.

All chaos broke out.

He does not understand why his efforts to be kind and caring are backfiring.

A few questions and he answered all his own questions.

You see, you cannot change anyone, including a 32 year old addict.

All of your best efforts to do so will fall on deaf ears.

Change can only come from within.

But, children, can be changed and guided by love, understanding, and building trust with them.

The change still comes from within them, but is guided by parents, guardians, foster parents, those that are sent to guide them, lead them, and love them.

Children are still forming their minds and patterns even in the midst of chaos.

They are looking for a hero, someone who will love them regardless.

They will push every boundary, and test you to the limit.

They may have seen too much, but, given the right guidance, counsel, and wise counsel, they will survive and overcome.

In my personal experience, I cannot change the addict, they can only change themselves, with professional help.

Again, in my personal experience, I can help the child to embrace a different life by providing the right counsel, opportunities, understanding and love.  Tough love at times, but love.

Love alone does not work.  Prayer, followed by hard work and dedication do have an effect.

Just as in marriages, honeymoons end, and, real life begins.  When the honeymoon ends, that’s when we see the real picture, and know just where to go, what to adjust, and if we do have the stamina and tolerance to ride this relationship to it’s fruition.

I could have left my marriage many times when things did not go my way.  I could have walked from relationships with my children when times got tough, and I could have walked from my relationship with my elderly mother when times got to be outrageous.

But, a relationship, has two sides.  Yours and theirs.  I choose to sculpt my side of any relationship in the form I want and need it to be.  It rubs off if it is done with the right attitude and the right heart.

So, in the case of my plumber, he wants to talk with me a whole lot more because his mind gained a new clarity after our “conversation” or impromptu coaching session.  He went from being the victim, to understanding the real victim, the child.

He went from feeling hurt, to understanding the hurt from the child.  He left not feeling hurt from words said from a thirteen year old child, but empowered knowing he can stand on the other side and help the child without getting his feelings hurt.

I leave you with this.  No child needs to be left behind if our thoughts are captured, looked at really hard, and understand that we will survive, but if we take offense from a child who has been abused and neglected, we are not helping anyone, including ourselves.
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So You Want To Foster To Adopt

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You are frustrated. You want to adopt a child, here, not overseas.

The system is difficult, long suffering, and impossible.

You decide to foster to adopt.

You expect your first child is going to be the one that stays, he/she doesn’t.

Then the second, the third, the group of three, none stay.  You are disillusioned.

You want to give up.

Why?

Maybe those children were not meant to be yours long term?

Maybe God just meant them to be there for you to nurture in the transition back to family who could parent?

What if you were their Angel unaware in their time of need?

What if you were the person who gave them their first hug, their first bedtime story, their first regular schedule, their first smile.

Does that change the way you are feeling?

Think about it.  Because God has the right child, or children in the right time.  Sometimes we just give up before the moment of miracles.

Our heart breaks with longing for the child we want to hold.  Their heart is breaking with longing for the mother or father they want to love them.

It’s sort of a catch 22.  We long for a baby, or child, they long for a family, and yet we are stuck in our own thoughts, and not allowing for the child’s.  What if you did that?  Stood in the child’s shoes?

Think of the fear they feel.  Think of the confusion; the rejection, thinking their parents have left.  Think of the lack of affection, the toys, bedtimes stories, hugs, home cooked food, pajamas, a bed of their own, all of these they do not have.

If you can give this for a week, a month, and in my case once, a year, then you have done your part of this amazing journey.  You have changed a child’s life.  You are truly a foster to adopt parent.

Your forever child will come.  At the right time, in the right circumstance, the right age (whether you asked for this or not) and the right sex.  Boy or girl doesn’t matter you know.  You get what you get when you birth them biologically.

I have two children specifically in my mind that I thought I wanted to be my forever children, but it was not to be.  In hindsight, I was right. The system was right in one case;  I painfully chose another family for the other,  but, it worked out.

Big news.  I am still in contact with them to this day because I did the job of the Foster Parent.  I so wanted them to be mine forever, but, that was not the plan, the ultimate Almighty plan.  I am blessed because I went with the plan.

Oh, and did I tell you this?  I ended up with eight adopted children, including three sets of twins.  Those that God meant to stay did, and to those children that I was meant to be their Angel unaware, I was.  To fifty or so of them.

Don’t look at the prize guys, look at the journey, and the joy on the way.  The prize is not your forever kids, it is the love, comfort and joy you give to those that are put upon your path in the journey of the Foster to Adopt parent.  Your forever kids are more than the prize, they are the virtual love of God given to you, for being able to give of your heart to “the lost children” who needed you, needed you in every hour.  Those children become “Invisible.”  They feel that way, until you pick them up, in your arms, love them, nurture them, read to them, and sometimes give them back to family who love them too.

If you want a free mini session (life coaching) go here.

If you want to list to a song that will minister about this go here.

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Help! Turn Up The Volume!

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I was out on my usual hike with amazing hubby this morning.

I could hear a voice calling out in the distance.

It seemed to be calling for help, but I wasn’t quite sure.

We stopped for a minute and listened carefully.

Yup, sounded something like “help!”

Some hikers passed us at that point, and I turned and asked them, “Can you year that?  Does it sound like someone calling for help?”

They looked at us and replied, “Yes, it sounds like that.”

Then they turned back to their conversation and walked on!

We were shocked to say the least, at how casual someone could ignore what really sounded like a cry for help.

Well, our hike took a slightly different turn and we followed the voice until we came upon a gentleman, who was not needing help, but trying to find his dog!  His dog’s name sure sounded like “help.”

We took a different path back, still wondering why no-one else on the trail went to find out if he needed assistance.  It stuck with me.

Different thoughts rolled around in my mind, and came back to the realization that most people just don’t like to get involved.  In fact, they prefer to pretend they didn’t see, or hear that someone might need help.

My thoughts immediately took me back to all of the “lost” children out there.  Some in group homes, some in orphanages, some around the corner, and some across the world.  All with a very small voice that is trying to be heard.  “I want a family;  I want a mom and dad.”

The statistics are shocking.  There are so many children, our next and future generations that do not have any home, let alone a stable, loving family.

So, maybe it’s time to shake it up.  Grow awareness.  If you relate, know about this issue and are involved, I would love to hear your thoughts.

So I don’t only think, but I know I need to “Turn Up The Volume!”  

Be heard!

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Miracles Do HAPPEN!!!!!

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I believe in miracles go here and  listen to this amazing song about ordinary miracles.

In my family ordinary, everyday miracles happen, because I believe.

I don’t even think about it, I just believe.

I could not have done that some seventeen years ago, but my life changed.

I had, HAD to, believe in ordinary, everyday miracles.  For my kids.

I am in Nashville right now.  I have a child, that is legally mine, who is a walking miracle.

I read up on google, who is your friend, today about his diagnosis.

He should not be alive, let alone, be walking or talking or being anything other than maybe in a vegetative state, or a slow, long, painful recovery of a very severely traumatized brain.

What I read.  An aneurism, a blood clot, a stroke, a trauma to his grey/white matter in his brain.  Top that off with a spleen trauma, deep lacerations to his left face, ear, hand, arm, and five different fractures to his back.

This is a walking miracle.  Four weeks later, he is talking, standing, walking, still a little scrambled in his memories vs his aspirations, but heck, even the hospital staff and doctors don’t get this.  He is God’s Miracle.

This child, or young man really, I just think of him as a child, came to me seven years ago because of another miracle in his life.

You see, he was adopted, but the adoption went sour, and south, in a very bad way.  The end result was he was the kid who escaped the authorities in both countries, Liberia and USA, and ended up in the interior of Rivercess.  He was westernized.  He couldn’t catch fish with his bare hands, or climb a coconut tree.  He suffered beyond what a child should.  He thought he deserved this.

I didn’t.  My amazing hubby didn’t either.  And we found him and brought him back. An amazing miracle.  How do you find a kid in the jungle in less than a day?  God.    This is the young man who has yet again suffered physically, and mentally.

When I heard the news, I never doubted he would be healed, fully, back to total mental and physical health.  I am watching that happen.

He will survive.  He will be full restored cognitively and physically.  He will have all of his memories, and full capacity of his abilities.

You see, our God reigns.  Supremely, undoubtedly, truthfully, justly, righteously, kindly, and knows everything.  Yup, everything.  He guides us, forgives us, loves us, and heals.  Mind, body, soul and spirit.  He is our creator of everything including life and death.  He decides, we don’t.  We only think we do.

Challenges are God breathed.  They are there for us to meet, rise up and move forward.a must place to visit while you're on-2
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When You Never Give Up

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I never give up.

When I know deep inside that I am supposed to do something, I do it.

My child Friday is like that.

He has a long story that no child should have to ever endure.

But he did, and he never gave up.  Neither did I.

Short synopsis.  He was adopted from a Liberian orphanage at around eight years of age.

He was sent back by his adoptive parents to Liberia five years later.

Illegal by anyone’s standards.

Lots of red tape, custody papers, a flight to get him and he came back.  Became a part of our family.  He is third from the left, in the front row, in the photo above.

Tough few years getting him educated, helping him through his fear, anger, resentment, abandonment issues, rejection and trying to teach him to love.

Still fighting the rules and the systems, he did get graduated and got his drivers license.  He was free!

He has “lived” his life over the last couple of years experiencing failure, tough times, hard decisions and finding his place.

He has kept in touch, especially in the moments where, he was living in his car in California and needing to get home, when he just needed to know I was there, the occasional comment on social media, but I knew where he was, and most importantly, he knew where I was.

Then shocking news.  He was in a serious car accident, barely hanging on to life for several days.  A “miracle” he was alive.  I had to choke back tears when I saw him.  On a breathing machine, his left ear swollen from being stitched back to his head, the intubation, the distortion from swelling, the tubes everywhere including the top of his head to relieve the fluid.

But, he is a fighter, and he has a purpose in this world.  I knew from the moment I heard that I would start fighting in the spiritual world for his total recovery.

I experienced his fight in the spiritual, and I knew he would not give up.  I had a peace, a peace that passes all understanding that he would be not just ok, but totally himself.

Brain trauma is a scary thing, he has a road ahead, but not one he will not conquer.

He is one state away from me, so I drive every week to see him.  Tomorrow I drive and I get to see him awake, just three weeks after this terrible accident.

If you would like to know his story you can buy my book, “Finding Friday”  here.

You can find his song, “Run To”  on my cd “Broken Hearts And Broken Wings” here.  These are songs related to fostering and adoption.

Sign up for my emails and you can follow his amazing progress!

And, p.s.  Please like my FB page “Finding Friday” here and “The Adoption Thing” FB page here.

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Stronger!

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You see that word there?  Islands.

We cannot be islands, but there are times when we need to be.

My son, Isaiah, or his real name Friday, has at many times needed in his mind to be just that.  He is the one third from the left, front row,  in the photo.

An Island.

Why?

Because too many people had failed him.  Let him down.

He felt abandoned.  Alone.  Unloved, Rejected. But strong.

You see through his trials, losing his mother, losing his father when he could not provide for him anymore, losing his first adoptive family because they were too young and made mistakes, being sent back, yes “back” to Africa, being in the “interior” a nice name for jungle and suffering to the point of death at a very young age.

Starving, not knowing how to catch fish with his bare hands, not knowing how to climb a coconut tree.  These were the issues a westernized, thirteen year old faced going back to the Interior, south of Monrovia,  Liberia.

Did it make him STRONG?  You bet.  There is a song out there called “Stronger” and the words pale into insignificance compared to my sweet boy’s journey.

Strong is now being applied in a different way.  A car crash.  Terrible.  No one even knows how he was alive when they found him.  Two hours after, and two rescue units to cut him out.  An ear cut off, a spleen damaged, three fractures of his spine, but the worst?  A life threatening head injury.  Trauma to his brain.  Swelling, fluid that causes life and death issues, not only with the brain, but with the lungs filling with fluid.

He IS a MIRACLE!!!

Dang, another one?

You see when you become part of my family, a miracle is expected.

I never doubted his recovery from first knowledge.  I just prayed.  I interceded in the heavenlys, I sent healing to him through prayers and intercession, holding a space for him to recover.  He has, and will have a full recovery.  Why, because my desire for this meets my belief it will happen.

Ok, sink that in.  When you believe as much as you desire, then God makes it happen.  I could tell you more miracles that have happened  because my dog determined belief plus desire made it happen.

That’s another blog.  But, my sweet boy, is going to be ok.  It will take time, but not the time they think, because once again, he is STRONG, and my belief/desire is STRONG!

I am in awe of the power of God, the healing powers, but also the gifts he gives of discernment to hear when his children are hurting and the gift of intercession.

The other miracle here is, there is not a mark on his face.  He has stitches for cuts on his left arm, and it was his left ear, all of course on the drivers side, but, not a mark on his sweet, beautiful face.  Not a stitch, nothing.  God is good all of the time.

Now, I am going to challenge you on something.  You see I don’t look at the negative, which means I walk in abundance.  This took me a while to discern, but I believe always in the healing, the restoration, never the opposite.

Thoughts for you to ponder on.  Don’t always go to the negative, always desire and believe.  All things are possible, everything is possible if you BELIEVE!


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How Often Do You Dream?

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I have been told from a very young age that my head is in the clouds.

I dream too much.

I want too much.

I expect too much.

I AM TOO MUCH!!!!!

I will tell you that yup I do all of that.  I dream, I want, I expect, and I don’t doubt any of it is coming to me, because, why?

WHY?

For most people, including some of my close family and friends, I am too much, I do dream too much, I do want too much and I do expect too much.  Because, I’ve not only earned it, but I’ve dreamed it and expected it to happen.  And can I tell you it DID!  I believed.

From the beginning of my foster/adoption journey I have never, no NEVER, believed the bad report.  I have always not doubted, but expected it all to be as it should.  A healthy, functioning child.  Even when I was looking at a child that should, had, and indeed could live this bad report.  I_just_never_believed_in_the_bad_report.

Some say I was just lucky.  My bad prognosis kids all turned out to be functioning.  Luck is not an option.  Belief and prayer is.  Not giving up is.  Giving up my wants was a big part.  Paying attention, giving my time, being dedicated to their outcome?  Yup that was part of it.  Prayer?  Yup about ninety percent.  Luck, about zero percent.  Belief, oh yeah, like two hundred percent.  If you cannot believe, how can you do any of the other stuff?

Ok, now lets put this into some of your real lives.  Do you believe in what you are called to do?  Do you believe that your dreams really do come true?  Do you believe that you are the one person who can make all of this happen?  If you do, and it doesn’t then come back to your mind and your thoughts, then somewhere there in your mind is a dis-connect.  Between the belief and the non-belief

I am here to tell you if you dwell in the dis-belief, or non-belief that is what you are going to get.  When you stay down in the negative stuff which is really relevant to fostering, then you will attract that stuff.  It will consume you.  You will stop thinking about your child, and being an advocate for that needing little one, and go on a merry go round of fighting, and negativity.  Don’t DO this.  There is a better way.

Focus.  Keep your head in the clouds!!  The clouds are a representation of Heaven in our minds.  When we look up and see them we think of Heaven.  So, keep your head there.  Don’t let thoughts rule you.  Dream big dreams for your kids, both foster, adopted and biological.  Never give up, fight back, and most of all?

DREAM!!

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New territories….exciting possibilities!

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I am passionate about what I call the “Lost Children”.

These are the children that are lost in “systems”, drugs, and abuse.

When do we step up?

There is a remnant that do.

I’ve met some of you.

You are as passionate as I am.

But how do we spread the awareness of this “lost world” of children?

Well, that is what I have pondered, wondered, and explored how I could change, or implement change, about awareness of the orphans.

As little as the middle of the last century, when I was born, there were no orphans, no “lost” children, because the church took  care of these kids whose parents were gone, in jail, died etc.

We have supposedly evolved from some seventy years ago, but did we?  Because now these children who have been neglected, abandoned, abused, deserted have transitioned out of the church’s responsibility to the state and federal governments job.

This is not what I know my teaching tells me.  I’m stepping out here.  James 1.27 in the bible.  We are responsible.  We have been commissioned to take care of the orphans and the widows.

But, even the church has changed. So much so, that I believe the awareness of how many children are in need of foster care, is limited at best. We have our interests, our groups, our lots of things, but what we are not aware of is, these children have nothing, no one, no place to go.

In my state our foster children have gone from 6,500 to 13,000 in four years.  There are not enough foster parents, not enough awareness, not enough homes, not enough people interested in our next generation.

I understand.  I have given forty-four years to parenting, waiting in my mind for “my” turn.  But my turn already happened, I just didn’t understand what my turn meant, or what it was.

I thought it was about myself, but it wasn’t.  It was about what was on God’s heart, the children.  The “lost” children.  I heard the call, but, never understood the meaning of it, just thought it was a passing phase.

But, it was God’s heart.

It took me all this time to understand that.

So, although I cannot take more children at this time, I can support and make others aware.  That is my intention.  In every part of my life.

As time goes by, I will tell you more, but I am excited, afraid, anticipating, and wondering how this decision will affect my life, and my new found career as a life coach.

But, my heart, my soul is for the children, the “Lost Children”.

Where are you?  What are your thoughts?  I would love to know.

Here is a link to my songs about adoption.

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