Trials are not enemies of faith but are opportunities to prove
God's faithfulness. -- Author Unknown

God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one
to say 'thank you?' -- William A. Ward

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Special Needs Adoption

OK. I'm going to be quite frank in my answer to the blogbuzz question this week. We chose special needs adoption not once but twice now. I have no doubt that given the opportunity, we will chose this route again. I don't think my husband and I ever thought of adopting a healthy white female newborn. Heck, I never even thought of adopting a healthy Indian (or any other nationality) child for that matter.
In locating our agency, we went through the waiting children files online. Constantly. On as many sites as possible.
I looked at sibling groups and older children. I looked at every disability you can think of.
Our agency, Dillon, has a special needs checklist that you fill out with the formal application. Ours had alot of Maybe's, a few (probably 5) no's, and then some yes. In filling in that checklist, I had 1 thing on my mind. Would I parent this child if I gave birth to them. The answer to that question was almost always yes. Even the few No's, I know that we may have accepted a referral. I know without a doubt that we would have parented a biological child.
This is where my reasoning gets frank.
I can not think of many situations where I could give my child up for adoption. I know of a couple people I work with who have been faced with tough situations. The ones where one child will physically and intentionally hurt you or your other children. That is the only situation where I feel like I have to say no. I don't feel like I can tell God himself that He is wrong. We had such peace about both of our adoptions that we are certain that God is giving us these children to raise.
Now on to what to do with a special needs referral:
1-find a doctor to talk to. If the first one won't take the time, then find another one. The same goes for therapists.
2-Research the condition. Find out what the medical community is doing with it today. This is important. There may be new treatments in the last couple years. There maybe new tests. There may be clinical trials. It is worth looking into while you have the time.
3-Contact your health insurance. You may be able to get a nurse who does case management. This way you know what is covered, what is not, if there are limits you need to be aware of.
4-Find the doctors who you want to treat your child.
5-Find out who does evaluations for early intervention and smart start through our state and county. I figure, I pay taxes then I should get my share of the services.
6-This is actually the most important. PRAY about it. Ask for God to lead you through the decision. Some days it is a hard road. Other days are great.
I don't think that my family has done anything special by adopting special needs children. They are the light of our lives. I don't feel like my son gets any less because his sister has a disability. I think he has grown because of it.
I would love to see more people adopt special needs/waiting children. It is an awesome experience.


Kristi said...

Great post! I'm so glad you are doing the RLC blog buzz Q's!! Don't forget to send in your info to RLC and your headshot so your posts link directly from their website. Also, don't forget to type in "red letters campaign" in your tag at the bottom of the post. I was really hoping you'd get on this bandwagon!! ;)

Peter and Nancy said...

I'm so glad you're sharing your experiences with other prospective parents! It's so much easier to ask those hard questions about adoption when you know there are other "ordianary" people who have done it before you. Even though we think you're extraordinary, of course. :o)
-- Nancy & crew

Brandi said...

Did you see that we featured you on the RLC blog?! This was such a great post that I couldn't let it go by!



Cindy said...

GREAT, and yes!! My family has definitely grown from adopting a special needs or waiting child. However, he is very MILD...but there are still days that are harder than others. . . thanks for the post!!

We love both of our children very much and feel like they compliment each other very well..God works that way, ya know?!