We can only imagine what you and your family have been through over the last several weeks and months but we wanted to share how much Baby L has touched our lives as well as so many people we love.
Two years ago, my husband and I found out we could not have children. I have terrible scarring on my tubes from a very serious viral infection, I had when I was 19 years old. We desperately wanted to start a family of our own and soon found our path included foster care – in the hopes of adopting. This was not a decision we took lightly as we spent hours in interviews, filled out stacks and stacks of paperwork, participated in hours of trainings, completed several different types of background checks and had strangers in our home on an almost weekly basis. But we felt called to help children and possibly adopt one or two someday.
About a year and a half ago, we finally received our licensing from the state of North Carolina. We soon were able to attend some matching events and met a 10 year boy – Chris that touched our hearts. He had a younger sister, Sadie. We followed the process of getting to know them and soon they were placed in our home.
It didn’t take long to realize how much emotional baggage these children came with. 15 homes and 10 schools in 5 years, has a pretty profound effect on kids. Not to mention what got them into foster care and open for adoption in the first place. We soon realized that they had many serious issues, issues that we simply couldn’t take on for our family. Therapy and Psychiatric appointments, stealing, lying, physically trying to hurt themselves or us, issues with food, learning disabilities and so much more. It became very overwhelming and on March 9th, after more than 8 months in our home, it was agreed the children needed to be separated and moved to a higher level of care in therapeutic foster homes. Our dream of adopting them came crashing down. We were heartbroken.
The home we had moved into specifically to grow our family was suddenly empty. The mini van we traded in for my convertible seemed useless. The school buses that went by everyday were reminders of how crushed we were. How does a parent move on without two children they loved? It was an impossible situation that left a very deep hole in our hearts.
Then we got the call about Baby L needing a home. We agreed to take her in even though we didn’t have a single thing in our home for babies. We had been prepared for tweens. We put a call out to our community and church and we were bombarded with gifts of lovingly worn hand me downs and baby items. The list is so long of the people who donated and supported us! Within 36 hours our home was ready for a baby. We picked up Baby L from UNC and immediately knew she was special.
Her smile. Her innocence. Her beauty. She is simply amazing. From moment one, she trusted us and loved us. And we loved her. We kept telling ourselves the goal of Foster care is family reunification, so our job was to simply take care of her temporarily. However, we couldn’t do that. We couldn’t love her just a little. We found ourselves loving her with our whole hearts. She filled our home with laughter, baby things and much needed purpose. She gave us a focus to help her heal and to encourage her growth. We found ourselves totally and completely in love.
And everyone who met her did too. My husband’s family in Michigan was going through a very tough health crisis around the time we got the call to pick up Baby L. His father had just been diagnosed with cancer. A very treatable form of cancer, but still very scary. We sent videos and photos of Baby L being cute and sweet to them and that helped them get through his difficult hospital stay with smiles. They were smitten with this baby girl, they never even met and probably never will meet.
Our across the street neighbor found out her 100 year old mother was starting to pass. She watched Baby L for a couple hours while I had meetings for my business for a couple of days during that time and she was a lovely distraction of fun and joy for her. She fell in love with her too.
Everywhere we went, people stopped us to share that Baby L is so beautiful. And we beamed because we couldn’t have agreed more. She is beautiful inside and out. We call Baby L our most precious gift, an angel on this Earth. She helped to heal our hearts and brought so much joy into our home. She changed us for the better.
As shared before, we really wanted to keep an open relationship with your family. We would love Baby L to stay in our lives in some way – even small way. Crazy Aunt and Uncle? Family Friend’s, whatever. But we understand if it is too hard… to let us in. That this has been a difficult time for you – the family, and we are only reminders of the fact that strangers had your baby. Baby L is family to us. And that makes you all family too. We are here. We would love to help. Babysit. Or just meet up for coffee…so we can give her a hug and just lay eyes on her. We would like to see her grow up and to be a support for you all. At the very least we wanted you to have this letter. We wanted Baby L to know how special she is and how much she positively affected our lives, even though she was just a baby. She has changed us. She helped to heal us in a way noone or nothing else could of. And we are so extremely thankful.
We now have a three-week old baby boy, named Zeke in our home that is open for adoption. We are hoping to make him a permanent part of our family. Baby L helped us cross the bridge of pain and heartache to get to this amazing and very special place in our lives. We are forever grateful and we will never forget her. She has a place in our hearts for eternity.
Foster Mom and Dad from 4/24/15-5/22/15