Are you thinking about Adopting?

I hear this question all the time and I am always stumped as to what to say... I am constantly thinking about adopting, adoption and all of the intricate ins-and-outs of what that would mean for specific children who I know. Yet, it is a hard thing to articulate. I was reading another Foster Mom's blog today and she captured it so perfectly. So with her permission, I share it here.

“Are you adoption motivated?”
Written on 2/16/2012 by Momma, from Called to Foster (no longer blogging).

I was asked the other day if we were adoption motivated. I’ve been asked that question half a dozen times the last few months but this time it was for a different child. I usually overanalyze that question to the point of insanity…

  • “What does that look like 5, 10, 20 years down the road?”
  • “Is there another family that can offer more than we can?”
  • “Will we be able to meet all of their needs (emotional, cultural, etc)
  • “Where does that mean for future fostering?”
Question after question, analyzing each one literally until the point of insanity but this time was a bit different. Without hesitation, my answer was YES! Yes, we would LOVE to adopt her! As the words came out of my mouth my stomach filled with knots.

The reality hit of the pain that would bring to ‘our’ little girl.

YES, we would love to have her as part of our family — today, tomorrow, for a month, a year, forever but that’s my answer. What’s her answer? What would be best for HER? For months she has been clinging on the hope of reuniting with her Mommy. She loves her Mommy very much and misses her often.

The knots in my stomach were guilt. The guilt of me wanting her to stay when I know the best thing for her would be to reunite to a strong, healthy and renewed Mommy. The thought of telling her she would not be going home, the amount of heartbreak that would bring to her.

The thought of that heartbreak makes me want to cheer hard for her Mommy’s team. It makes me want to send more pictures so she is reminded of why she needs to work so hard. It makes me want to send more updates on how she’s doing with encouraging notes of how much her daughter loves her. It makes me set aside the heartache letting her go would bring us. It reminds me to desire what’s truly best for her.

After all, isn’t that what foster care is about… helping these families face their challenges so that they can reunite as a strong, healthy, functioning family?

I know that if it comes to adoption we would feel extremely blessed to have her as a forever daughter, but I’m not so certain that our joy won’t be overtaken by the sadness losing her Mommy would bring to her life.

Are we adoption motivated?  Our answer… Only if it’s truly what’s truly best for the child. Until the judge determines that, we will stand with ‘our’ little girl in the hope that her Mommy can become the Mommy she needs her to be.