For us foster care is our ministry. We believe there is a special type of person that gets this calling. It's not for everyone to be completely honest. And to be honest, I've wanted to quit many times in the 3 1/2 years we've been foster parents. But God always pulled me through the tough times. Sometimes He even had to carry me. I can hear Him saying the same words I would tell my girls when they were little out on a walk - just one more step, just one more step. Fortunately, I kept taking one more step through the hard times because it lead me to one of my greatest blessings - a son. A son I didn't even know I wanted. One I definitely didn't know I needed.
For our family profile, we had stated we would accept any race, boy or girl, ages 4 and under. After having 13 foster children come in and then out of my home, my husband and I were certain we were not meant to be boy parents. And after having a big heart break over an infant leaving, I said no more newborns. I thought and prayed on it. I talked it over with my husband and sister-in-law many times. But before I actually made the call to change our profile, I got a referral call. My caseworker was so excited for the call - she said guess what?!? We have a referral for a newborn baby boy! (ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!?) I said yes, we would accept him IF the county picked our family. I felt I was probably in the clear since everyone wants a newborn. We were probably 1 of 20 families saying yes. Nope, a call back ten minutes later to tell me I'd need to pick him up from the hospital in the next 3 days. I had a mix of emotions. Didn't I just say to myself no more boys or newborns? And here I was going to pick up a newborn boy. I had a hard time with my other foster sons. I cared for them but it was hard for me to connect. What did I just do?! The second I saw the top of his head covered in dark hair, I knew I loved him. And then I saw his little face and knew it was over for my heart. Then the social worker starts saying things like abandoned and pre-adoption placement. She told me his mother left him and didn't even name him. That no local family was deemed appropriate for him. That the father was unknown and mom was MIA. What in the world was happening right now? I felt like I was having some outer body moment. I just came to pick up a baby for foster care. One I almost didn't even say yes to and now I'm having all this dropped on me. Oh, and one more thing. There were no other families even asked to take this baby. We were the only one considered and asked. Why? Because of our involvement with two little sisters we had and then had to send back home. Two little sisters who broke our hearts so bad we didn't even know if we could go on in foster care. The baby girl was the very reason why I didn't even want to accept newborns anymore. And here God took our biggest heart break and it was looking like He was simply handing us a baby boy to keep.
We took him home and called him Beau. Those feelings of not parenting boys well vanished. I was in love. I went through every emotion that first 6 months we had him. From anger towards a women who used drugs while pregnant and then leaving her baby; to thankfulness towards her for actually going to a hospital to have him and not leaving him somewhere to die or even aborting him. She made contact to the county 3 times and one of those times was for the termination of rights. I would later find out she did try to end her pregnancy multiple times without success. Beau came into our home and it was like he always belonged.
He and I live a sappy love story. What amazes me is how much we needed each other. Yes, he definitely needed to be cared for and have a family. But I needed him more than I realized. This baby boy, his actual legal name for 13 months, changed me in ways I didn't even know I needed to change. The lessons I needed to learn that only could be taught to me by a little abandoned baby boy. Our first year with him couldn't have been easier in terms of TPR's and adoption. The county had never had a case like this but they moved as quick as possible to get this boy permanently in a family and given a name. I never once saw or spoke to his birth mother. She didn't want him or want to see him and I didn't know I needed him.
On December 15, 2016 we gave our boy a legal name. Even though we had no struggles with our case, it was such a relief to make it all official. It was just so good to give this precious baby boy a name after 13 months. I love how God cares for our hearts. He feels our pain and catches our tears. He knew my heartbreak when the little sisters left. A hurt I still feel two years later. Tears that still fall from my eyes. But He knew a little boy would come just 8 short months after they left that this little boy would need a mom. A boy that would need me specifically to be his mom. He knew the best balm for my hurting momma heart would be found in the arms of a baby boy. A boy I didn't even know I needed.
When I look into his smiling eyes, I'm daily reminded of Gods love for me; to keep trusting Him during the tough times; to have faith that He has my best interest in mind even when things don't make sense; when prayers seem answered and then you're left confused because He takes it all away. His timing is perfect. His love is immense. And he knows me better than I even know myself. I can't help but think what if I had said no to that referral call. Would I have missed out on one of my greatest blessings? When people find out I'm a foster mom I almost immediately get given a gold crown and a bouquet of roses, like I'm some superhero for what I do for these kids in need. And it's true, we have extra love and room to give to kids who need love and room. But honestly, I'm the one who ends up having my needs shown to me with each child that enters my door. Our home and hearts are still open. We will continue to be foster parents and when someone needs to stay for good, we will be happy to stand in front of a judge again proclaiming our love on court record. I didn't grow up like some women always knowing they would adopt a child but I'm so thankful God took me down this road.
Beau and Bobbi and family.
Bobbie, your foster care adoption story is so inspiring and moving! I love the way God has knit your family together. You have a beautiful family. Thank you for sharing your story!
As with any adoption story, there are no two adoptions that are the same. We would love to hear your adoption story from a Christian perspective. Some families choose international adoption while other families choose domestic adoption (private or foster care). If you have adopted and would like us to feature your adoption story on Adoption Story Wednesday, please go to our Share Your Story page to submit to Adoption Strong.
“However motherhood comes to you, it’s a miracle.” Valerie Harper