Tomorrow my middle son will turn fifteen years old and seeing as November is National Adoption Month, I think it is only fitting that I share a bit of his story.
Before he was born, we knew he was coming. This is not usually the case with foster care, although we experienced it more than once. Because Jeremiah’s birth siblings had already been removed from the home, a plan was already in place for him to enter foster care at birth. Because we had a sibling (eventually we would care four children from this family) we were asked to accept him and we agreed. So, when he was being born, we were made aware. When his birth parents managed to slip out of the hospital with him upon discharge, we were made aware of that too. Our hearts fell, not because he was in imminent danger, for I had met his birth parents on many occasions. But, because of the sadness of the situation and because as much as they wanted their children, they were not capable of properly caring for them.
I feel I must insert that many services and resources had been exhausted by the time Jeremiah was born. He was the sixth child born into the family (later there would be a seventh) and sadly, after so many years and failed attempts to make the home what it needed to be, the only answer left was to remove the children. Some were being raised by relatives, some in foster care. I was saddened for their loss. I was concerned for this precious new baby until the day arrived when the authorities would locate them and take him into custody. I prayed for them all.
The day did arrive when Jeremiah was located and we were called in the early evening with the news. They had him in custody the day he turned two months old. I’ll never forget that call, that night. I wept for his birth mother and father. I knew full well, it was the best thing to happen, the right thing. But, the best of things often do not happen without great pain.
The social worker called and we all piled into the van to drive about forty-five minutes to meet her. Our meeting place is a family story that has been told many times. Our son who is now eighteen was still four years old and witnessed the ‘exchange’. You see, we walked in a WalMart with an empty buggy and we checked out with a new baby and the necessary supplies to care for him. For years he told everyone that we bought Jeremiah at WalMart and nothing we could say would convince him otherwise. He had seen it with his own eyes.
We did not know them that we would later be given the opportunity to adopt Jeremiah as well as another one of his birth siblings (our oldest now, Josiah, who is still 19 for a few weeks). We had no idea that he would be our forever child. We only knew he needed caring for and we were willing and quite honored to do so.
If you have had the pleasure of knowing Jeremiah, he has likely stolen your heart. He is unique. He is musically gifted. He is spiritually insightful. He knows how to soothe an anxious heart with his easy ways and soft words. He is so handsome! He is my son and tomorrow he turns 15!!
Here are the words to one of his beautiful songs he has written.
Show me the bright side
So I can see
Shield me from darkness
for all eternity
There is no one like you
There is no one beside you
I will sing with with everything
And I will shout,I will scream
May all of the broken
Be made whole.
May all of the seeking
Find my God.