Adoption Stories: Post 1

During the month of November, we collected several adoption stories to celebrate National Adoption Month. Over the next few days, we will share them broken into several different posts. We hope you enjoy reading these as much as we have!


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Roxie Swank:

“Our family story starts with the heartbreak of infertility. Foster care was always my later life plan, something I wanted to do once my kids were grown and I thought we would foster teenagers. But in his true fashion God had other plans, in November 2015 we finalized Mya and Kalum’s adoptions. Fast forward 10 months later and we finalized Alex’s adoption on September 3, 2016. Foster care made us a family and adoption made it forever ❤️ and all of the people in this picture, they are our family. Some by blood, and many by choice. They all love our kids fiercely, they supported us through the ups and downs of foster care and stood here with us to celebrate that we were officially and forever a family of 5.”

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Tabitha Lafferty:

“Todd and I met in jr high at church . We grew up together as friends and didn’t date until our 20’s . When we decided to get married we immediately talked about making a family . Adoption was one of those dreams . Fast forward 7 years and we didn’t have any children . I was a manager at bath and body works and one day a friend called me while I was At work. She asked if we wanted a baby ! A friend of hers had a baby and CPS would be removing it , would we like him ? I initially said no . We hadn’t even discussed this ! A week went by and the friend said we could still have the baby if we wanted , all we needed to do was become foster parents . So we found an agency . We received pictures of the baby as we quickly got licensed . We were a week or so shy of finishing up and we got devastating news. The baby wasn’t his so he wouldn’t be able to have us as a kinship placement . We were confused . We rushed through all this to be let down ? We decided to finish our licensing and see where this led us . Not even a week from finishing our last class we got a call . Two boys , ages 2&1 did we want them ? We said yes !! They came within 45 min . After that it was a roller coaster . For 15 months we fostered them with the wish of adopting . The bio mom was involved and wanted her sons back . We were advised by CPS to hire a lawyer and seek termination of her rights . We did not get it . Instead we got PMC . Permanent managing Conservators. Or legal guardians . We would keep them in our home but they would still have visits with bio mom supervised by us every 1st , 3rd and 5th Saturday . CPS closed the case and we were left to deal with bio mom on our own . We felt abandoned and scared . God didn’t answer our prayers. And we were so lost . We started this new journey . As we did we lost friends , family members, a church . It’s hard to explain the loneliness we felt as we were one of the only families to do this that wasn’t a kinship (family ) placement. We were still an open foster home as well . So we got another call for respite for 2 more boys ages 3&1 . We said yes and they came to us that afternoon . After 2 weeks we were told their bio parents already had their rights terminated and so these boys were adoption ready . We initially said no . 4 boys under 4 was a lot and we were dealing with so much from the 1st 2’s bio mom . We continued to care for them and after about a month we felt God leading us and telling us to adopt these 2 new boys. So we did ! We had them a little over 9 months when they became our forever kids . After that our oldest (one of the original 2) started to have a lot of anxiety and fears. He begged us to adopt him. We tried to reassure him that he was ours but he kept saying “the judge didn’t say so .” He knew . So last year we started to pray and save money . And at the beginning of this year we met with a lawyer . I met bio mom and explained our desires and our sons desires . After much , MUCH deliberation she signed her rights away . We adopted them on June 16, 2016 . 1289 after they came into our home . So thats our story . Still in the middle of it ,not sure how it will end but I do know it will end with us as a family . Although I don’t know why we journeyed this road I do know that God guided and protected us every step of the way . Even on days I couldn’t see any light.”

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Stephanie Daniels:

“We entered in to the world of foster care intending to adopt- but along the way we fell in love with fostering. We continued to pursue adoption, but it wasn’t fast, and it wasn’t easy. But then there she was! We are hers forever and all the waiting was worth it.
The Daniels family”

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Casey Zaruba:

“I wish I could say I was one of those people who always wanted to adopt, but truth be told that wasn’t me. I always just thought I would be pregnant. After donating eggs to another couple in 2011 who couldn’t get pregnant, my husband and I began trying to conceive. After almost 2 years, randomly (it felt like) God laid Uganda, Africa on my heart. He spoke it to me so clearly. At this point Adoption was something that was now on my mind, but not my husbands. Like not even a little. He got on board with Africa (God is sneaky, right?) and we served in an orphanage for a month. Met the sweetest boy named Kamoga to this day I swear made my husband a dad. Came home changed, began fighting for Kamoga to be ours, started a concurrent adoption in the Czech Republic. ***Fast Forward*** Ultimately we found out Kamoga DID in fact have a family in Uganda so we immediately stopped the adoption process for him (nearly killed me), and after a year of being the Czech program, about 452 friends becoming pregnant (doesn’t this always happen when you want a baby) one Tuesday night in September 2014 I cried the whole way home telling God I felt forgotten. Like BAWLED my eye out. That night at around 6pm I received a phone call from an agency in Florida ( I skipped the part where I mentioned I became an adoption consultant with Christian Adoption Consultants through all of this) that we worked with and on the other line I heard, “Casey, we have a 4 day old baby boy in the NICU and he needs a family. His mom asked us to choose and we think it should be you and Tyler.” And then that’s when I blacked out. (kidding, but really) the next few hours were INTENSE as we took out a ginormous loan, said yes, packed our car and got on the road. 48 hours later we walked into a room and met our first son, Foster. 10 months later we started our second adoption and 7 weeks after that our second baby boy, Murphy was born and we finalized his adoption earlier this year. We have 2 open adoptions, 2 beautiful boys and a God that was so faithful to us. If you are waiting and feel like time is standing still, I would encourage you to seek God in those moments and cling to the fact that there is Purpose in the Pain. He is so good, friends. ❤”

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Hillary Massey:

“April 22, 2016. Our first official day as a family of 3. As big as this day was for our family, it also wasn’t. We became a family long before. We become a new family every time new children come into our home. Foster, respite, adoption day, they are all just different versions of us. They are all ours forever, whether they end up with our last name or not.
We didn’t tell anyone of our plans to foster. We completed our training a month after our info meeting and told 2 family members and a friend what we were doing because we needed them to be our personal references. We were approved days after our final home study and days later received our first placement of two little boys. Our families were shocked. It was hard adjusting to life as four. But we did adjust and loved them fiercely. After 6 months we knew they would most likely be reunifying. Our consultant approached us to consider accepting an additional placement that would overlap our current one. A 6 month old girl that had been with another family in our church from 3 weeks old. I knew the baby as I happened to have been at the court house the day she was removed from her biological mother. We started doing respite for her and accepted placement of this dark haired roly-poly girl days before she turned 8 months. Life was crazy with 3 foster kids 3 and under, not to mention visitations, home visits, case workers, and therapies that come with foster care. We grew close to the other foster family. What a gift they have been to us! Our boys reunified 2 months later and we settled into life with only one child. Termination and surrender happened quickly. It was heart wrenching and relieving at the same time. We were impatient to have the studies completed and to have a finalization date. But we got our date in record time and became official!
Adoption has certainly built our family, but adoption just makes official what you already know as a family. We have been forced to trust our God through every unknown and heartbreak. And I thank God for the hard! Without these hard places, adoption of our girl would not even be in our story. Our toddler girl that waves to everyone she sees, who will grow knowing her middle family that loves her profoundly. We could not even be a glimpse of the family we are after foster care and adoption.
I attended a retreat this year just before finalization. An adoptee speaker there shared with an adoptive mama and it was said that not only our adopted children come from a hard place but so do adoptive mamas. It was a lightbulb moment for me because it put into words what was in my heart. God designed our hard places to fit together. God uses our obedience to heal us if we will just trust him.
I don’t think God ever designed children to lose their biological families but used the broken pieces of sinfulness to heal. Only God can do that, make something unexplainably beautiful out of sorrow and loss. To be a part of that is such an honor.”


casey

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One Response to Adoption Stories: Post 1

  1. Pingback: Adoption Stories: Post 2 | Dropping Anchors

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