All words and thoughts are my own.
Revealing a pretty enormous secret here today. Ready for it?
These kids (and their three siblings) do not have anything happening in their life that comes even close to "perfect" parenting or a perfect upbringing. (So, not really a secret I suppose.)
Their freaky eyes say it all, don't they?
If you have been reading here long, you know that we do not think everyone should adopt. Adoption is not for everyone. I am certain of that. Having said that, I do think that more people are qualified, able, and really ready for the job of fostering or adopting a child.
It is not uncommon for people to say, "I could never do it." Their reasons are not usually given. On occasion, people hint at not being "good enough" to do it. Recently someone told me they could "never do foster care because the goodbye would be too hard".
Families that have adopted tend to be friends with families that have adopted. We get to help, encourage, and build one another up; it is a beautiful community. In 12 years of being adoptive parents Troy and I have yet to meet anyone that is perfect. None of us were raised by perfect people, and by golly, our kids won't be either. Fear seems to hold people back from really investigating the options. From the conversations I have had, most of the fears are based on false assumptions.
Kids don't need perfection. Even kids that have lost a lot and have been hurt in their lives. They need stability. They need love. They need some structure and predictability. They need food and a bed.
Statistically, studies show that imperfect people are parenting the vast majority of the world's children. This is good news.
I submit to you that pain is a part of life. Goodbyes are a part of life. Disappointment is a part of life. Messing up is a part of life. Starting over is a part of life. LOVE and sacrifice are a part of life. They are worth the pain. Love washes over these things, love lights the path when things get dark or scary or very, very sad. Love gives you courage to do hard things.
Unlike many adoptive parents and foster parents I know, I did not grow up hoping to adopt. We ended up adoptive and foster parents without it being part of our personal five or ten year plan. We stumbled into it; I am so grateful. While it has not always been easy and it certainly has not been painless, it has been worth it and has been so rewarding. The blessings of the children that have come into our lives via adoption and foster care are impossible to quantify.
Kids don't want perfect parents - they want HUMAN parents. Most of you reading qualify!
If you've ever wondered about adoption and/or foster care, ever thought about it but became afraid, or ever even considered the possibility, please check out these links: