My husband and I were blessed to adopt our two youngest children. Draven was 3 months shy of his second birthday when we welcomed him into our home. It took another year before we were able to adopt.
When we were approached by the foster agency, we were informed that Draven had hydrocephalus with a shunt. Once he was placed with us, we could tell that there was something else going on. After doctors’ appointments and testing, the results began to roll in. He was diagnosed with a chromosome disorder, cerebral palsy, intellectual and developmental disabilities, autism, and cortical visual impairment.
At one point, our case manager asked if we still wanted to adopt. My husband and I said, “Of course we do!” Draven was our son—we loved and wanted him. We understood that the road would not be easy. When has raising a child ever been easy?
Draven has brought so much joy and happiness into our family and he has taught all of us valuable lessons. We have learned that the greatest joys often come in the smallest of victories. Draven is an amazing miracle that we have the privilege of calling our son.
Rosie walked in our front door the day after her first birthday and stole our hearts. She was a fireball full of life with an infectious smile. Her adoption was final soon after her second birthday.
Over the last six years, we have encountered some obstacles but Rosie meets every challenge head-on, ready to fight. She was diagnosed with ADHD and Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder in the past two years. It was intimidating at first, but with help from friends, family, counselors, and doctors, we have learned ways to help not only Rosie but our whole family. To see the progress she has made is amazing and the sky is the limit for her future. She is our precious princess!
Adoption is an incredible and wonderful, life-changing event. At times, my husband and I have been told that we were special because we adopted…but we aren’t. We are ordinary everyday people who have had the privilege of opening our hearts and homes to two unbelievably special children. They have taught us some spectacular life-lessons and the truest meaning of unconditional love.
Adoption goes beyond any words that can be written or spoken. It is a fusion of family that cannot be explained but only felt.
Here are some great articles written by parents who have adopted children with disabilities.
"As soon as we saw you, we knew an adventure was going to happen." – Winnie the Pooh
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we asked parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs to share their tips and stories about caring for their children during difficult times.