In honor of November being National Adoption Month, Strengthening Families, Changing Lives is sharing some guest posts by people with widely varying experiences.
By Michael Feight, adoptive dad from Wisconsin
One morning the question was popped. I was eating breakfast with my girlfriend and her two daughters. Those two daughters did what no other two daughters have ever done – at least not that I had heard of. They proposed for us. The Earth stood still, the moon dropped out of the sky, and somehow pulses surged while hearts stopped. Jarrod, oblivious to all of this from his high chair, just kept on eating happily, unaware that his fate had perhaps just been sealed.
“So, you two gonna get ‘emmed’ or what,” the girls asked.
Just like that I was married and moving my new wife, those two teenage girls, and little Jarrod 150 miles to the town where I lived. Not the one room little house that was my nirvana of peace and quiet, oh no. I found us a three bedroom house, bought a second car, a lawn mower, and a snow shovel. I was a married man, and a dad!
Being the stepdad of my wife’s two girls who were interested in boys is another story for another time. Being an adoptive dad, however, was no sweat for me, I loved the job. Even when changing his little diapers and reporting to his mom what was deposited. Right up until this ravenous little monster started eating real food. And then serious potty training was our highest priority from that point on.
But Jarrod made up for all of those diaper changes in a big way: that little bundle of joy taught me the value and pleasure of NAPS!
Soon came the hearing on whether or not I could adopt Jarrod. The judge was a nice man. He started out by inviting my wife to the stand and asking what seemed like 100 questions. He excused her and told me it was my turn. “Don’t let them see you sweat,” was running through my mind. His first question was why I wanted to adopt this little guy. Jarrod was in his one-piece OshKosh B’Gosh jumper and doing what little boys do, jumping around on the bench and laughing wonderfully. I looked at the judge and asked him if he wouldn’t want to adopt this wonderful little boy like I wanted to. The judge smiled broadly, banged the gavel, and I had a son! And then the judge made a very profound statement to us, something along the lines of, “With all of the other things that I have to deal with on a daily basis, it is so wonderful to be able to do something good like this once in a while.”
So please don’t forget that you are not coming in front of that judge, social worker, attorney, or whomever in an orange prison jumpsuit and handcuffs. You are coming as extraordinary people, choosing to make a difference in both yours and someone else’s life. Believe me, you will make that person’s day.