A Gay Dad’s Adoption Journey: And Then There Were Four
By: Henry Amador-Batten
As I write on this beautiful crisp and sunny March morning, there are two things that I am immediately grateful for, first is the Sun beating on my face though the sitting room window, it’s long overdue and oh so needed and secondly are the sounds of my husband working in the yard as my two sons yell and laugh chasing imaginary butterflies in big green nets.
That’s the first time I ever wrote the words “my two sons.”
Many of you have followed our journey towards adopting our second child, and as you know it has been a very long and often difficult road.
Last November we watched a video of a sweet five year old boy and we fell in love.
Today, four months later he is here, he is ours and we are his.
We started out following a pretty specific plan that the state has implemented to help older children transition out of foster homes and into the forever versions.
Remember that saying “man plans and god laughs?”
Well after only a couple of small visits with him it grew glaringly apparent that he was ready to leave the place he had called home for so long and to move forward and to move in with this motley crew a fellas.
I don’t know how many people have experienced what it feels like to have a child gently walk towards you (alongside their social worker lending support) and hear a soft voice say, I’m ready to be here, are you ready to let me grow up here with you? Can I stay here for tomorrow and after tomorrow and forever?
I can personally say that it is a life altering moment that touches a piece of your heart that is not easily nor often reached.
Having a newborn placed in your arms is awe inspiring also, I agree, I have experienced that as well but having a little, thinking and speaking tiny human put that kind of trust in you is truly something magical, terrifying and humbling.
Well it could take up towards a year before our adoption is finalized.
Although he is legally free to be adopted now, there will be a mandatory 90 days or longer before his case plan can be changed to adoption, then the wait that starts from that point and then the waiting for a court date and so on and so on.
In the meantime we have a lot of growing to do as a family.
Our first child suddenly has a bigger brother that he needs to share his home with, his things with but most disturbing for him, share his fathers with, he’s having the toughest time.
Yet, when I really begin to worry about him I hear him tell his new big brother that he loves him and then I know that he will be just fine, even better than fine.
The newest addition is also feeling the stress that accompanies this final move and all the moves leading up to it.
Each day I learn more and more about him.
He had never had a Pop-tart.
He didn’t know what a golf cart was.
He beamed when he got his own electronic toothbrush.
But he also got anxious the first time he got in trouble thinking we wouldn’t want to keep him.
I moved some of his clothes to have some closet construction done and he asked why I was packing his things up, he asked if he was leaving.
When I explained that the only time I would be packing his bag was to go on vacation he gave me the biggest hug and smile as he went off to play.
I can’t imagine how long it will take to build trust. I know for a fact that he’s been told some of these same things by other adults that ended up failing him.
I can only hope that with time, consistency and love he will grow to believe in us, to close his eyes at night and know that he’s finally and forever home.
And just when we all settle into our wonderful new lives I hope the boys don’t mind too much when their daddy and papa start thinking about another addition to our tribe.
We’ve always wanted a little girl!
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