When I was 4, I attended a summer school in which one of our teachers, Mrs. King, was a foster parent for a boy who was about 3 years old. All summer, I watched her hug him, hold his hand, play with him, and love on him like every parent should love a kid. She delighted in him, and he adored her. Near the end of the summer, though, Mrs. King explained that her boy would be leaving their home — she said that she and her husband could keep him if they wanted to (adopt), but they decided they would not. So he would be leaving and we wouldn’t see him any more.
At 4 years old, I remember looking through the window of our classroom and watching Mrs. King explain to her boy that although she loved him, he would not stay with her and needed to move on to his next family. And I even more vividly remember watching that boy’s heart break right in front of me — a boy not much younger than me. He sobbed, and begged, and pleaded, and held on to her leg, and screamed desperately… And she cried and tried to hold him away from her… Until another woman took the boy away in a car.
I remembered that day during a recent conversation Niki and I had about adoption. I’ve always wanted to adopt, but I didn’t know where my heart for adoption came from. And that’s when I remembered the day I watched that boy’s heart break: On that day, I resolved that I would one day adopt.