Sunday, November 4, 2012
National Adoption Month Ya'll
Hello my fellow blog readers! I apologize for my lack of posts as of lately. I'm amazed myself at how ridiculously busy we seem to have been the past few weeks. It is time to slow down! I wonder if that will be possible. I don't have any dramatic or shocking stories to share with you at the moment. Things have been going rather well. I hope you aren't too disappointed. I know we all love to see, hear, and read about the drama unfolding in other peoples lives. But I don't want to be that kind of author. I want to celebrate, teach, share, and some times brag too. You don't mind do you?
We have already made it to November. Can you believe it? I typically love Fall, if only it would feel like Fall here in Alabama. It's been in the 80's this weekend. We had our first ever, family pictures made yesterday. How fitting that our first family photo was with our complete family, after adopting R? We stood in a field, under the hot sun, wearing our plaid shirts, jeans, scarves, and hats. It should make for a great Winter/Christmas portrait though. But the most important thing about November I want you to know, is that it's National Adoption Month. I never knew such a thing existed, and why would I have before we became a part of the adopting community? This month has been celebrated for adoption, for 17 years now.
A short history of National Adoption Month:
1976: Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis announced an Adoption Week to promote awareness of the need for adoptive families for children in foster care.
1984: President Reagan proclaimed the first National Adoption Week.
1995: President Clinton expanded the awareness week to the entire month of November.
1998: President Clinton directed the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop a plan to expand the use of the Internet as a tool to find homes for children waiting to be adopted from foster care.
This year's National Adoption Month initiative targets adoption professionals by focusing on ways to use social media to build States' capacity to recruit and retain parents for the 104,000 children and youth in foster care waiting for adoptive families. Learn more in National Adoption Month—Virtually: Adoption in the Digital Age.
Did you know you can view videos and pictures of children, telling their stories, wanting so badly to be a part of a family? It's almost as if these kids are interviewing for a mom and dad, and how much does that make your heart hurt? For my state, our website is http://www.heartgalleryalabama.com/children/. You'll see siblings who want a family, but of course want to stay together too. These three brothers, Dustin, Daniel, and Rickey, touch my heart and are so deserving of loving parents. Daniel and Rickey are twins. And look at that protective, big brother.
I realize that adoption can be scary and hard, but it is so worth it, even if I do complain about how difficult it can be at times. When you see that you are making a difference in a childs life, then you know it was all worth it. We have begun to see that difference. Adoption is not something that happens over night, nor does adjusting and bonding happen over night. And we all must remind ourselves when we think it's scary and hard for us, imagine how a child must feel. Will they love me? Will they give me back? Why doesn't she hug and kiss me like she does the little kids? I was never tucked in as a baby...I wish I could be tucked in to bed too.
Remember this, we don't have to be perfect people to be perfect parents! There are more than 26,000 preteens currently available for adoption, and this year’s campaign is an effort to raise awareness about that. Children’s Bureau data shows that the older a child gets, the more difficult it is for them to find a permanent home. I realize that most people want to start from the beginning with a child. I completely understand that. But adopting an older child can be just as rewarding for you, and especially rewarding to the child. My biological children welcomed R into our home much quicker than my husband and I did. They bonded and fell in love so quickly, and also began fighting like siblings almost immediately. Besides myself and my husband, R is the only other person my 2 year old daughter will love on. She is such a loving child, but keeps it very reserved for the people she feels the safest with. I am envious of the way she loves him.
If you or someone you know, has considered adoption at some point, take this month to research, read stories, watch videos, look at pictures. I'm almost certain your mind will be made up before National Adoption Month comes to an end.
How much does R look like his biological mother? We were floored when we found this picture.