Wednesday, March 02, 2011

I enjoy the feedback...

Since I started chronicling our journey on this blog, I've had the sporadic comment or two. Or three. Those are easy to see. What you don't see, however, is the emails I get. I've always said that it is my goal in chronicling our journey to inspire someone to at least consider adoption. It's my ultimate goal to inspire someone to consider adopting from the foster care system.  The emails that I have received have been inspiring, complimentary, admiring, inquisitive, and altogether uplifting.  Mostly they've been curious as to our progress and our feelings as we move on down the road.

There are several pros and cons to adopting from the foster care system, this I will readily admit.  What I tire of hearing is those who have never been through the process that have an opinion about the child that will come from the system.  You know, the ones who have a 'friend/neighbor/dental assistant who swears that it's SO difficult and all of the children are damaged.' {insert GIANT eyeroll here}

{Pause while I find my eyes and roll them BACK into my head}

Yes, older children may tend to have issues or traumas that may need special care or attention.  They may have trouble attaching or bonding.  They may have difficulty trusting adults.  They may have anger issues. They may be in a place where there isn't much you think you could do for them.

I don't profess to be the authority on adoption from the foster care system in every state.  I don't even believe I'm the expert on adoption from Oregon.  This I do know: in this state, the adoptive parents get a choice.  They fill out a 'wish list' of sorts.  On this list are several 'issues' that a child could have, and you check off whether or not you feel you could or would be willing to deal with it.

Now you might want to sit down for this, because here's the big confession:  one of our children has a diagnosis that we both decided when we filled out our questionnaire that we would NOT be equipped to handle.  That's right - until we received the background on our children, we had made the choice that we wouldn't choose a child that had this diagnosis.

And then we saw W&J.  And we read their story.  And our hearts melted.

So what of this change of heart?  Well, we have at our disposal a myriad of assistance through the state.  Resources and help that we are free to take advantage of with amazing results.  We are smack in the middle of some assistance right now and coupled with the safe landing place we are creating for our child, there is remarkable progress being made.

I'm not here to guilt anyone into doing something they don't want to do.  I'm also not here to be lauded as a saint, or hailed as a person who stands above others in her morality.  I'm here as an example of what you can do, when you put your heart and mind into it.  I'm here to be a source of support and information for those who are considering this wonderful, crazy, bi-polar roller coaster of a journey that adoption can be.

Please continue to send me emails (link is in the right sidebar).  I respond to them all, and I love hearing how I've inspired someone, however I've done it.

You can also follow me on twitter - I'm @christinaherren.


Trace Clements said...

Amen sister! It's the same here too in Canada. People always telling me that I shouldn't allow "THOSE" kids in my home. We've had five foster kids and only one had severe problems..the type we couldn't handle ourselves. We are adopting our little princess who we have had for almost two years and she is a doll. We had a wonderful little guy who I bawled when he left to go back to his parents. So it's not all bad.

I think people just hear the negative all the time about fostering and no one is willing to share the positive (media etc). Well you and I can be go against the "norm" and let people know that you can CERTAINLY have positive experiences as well.

Love you! XO

Kim M. said...

Have I ever mentioned how very much I *heart* you? Cuz I do!

Tammy said...

I hated filling out that questionnaire because there are soo many unknowns. We plan on taking it case by case before totally ruling out anything (to some degree...I still want a girl! LOL)

I think of you often as we are going through our journey (only 1 more class to go!) Physicals, Fingerprints and CPR DONE...just a few little things to finish up before the home study! YAY!