One year ago, almost to the day, our journey towards adopting started. I was getting ready to start a new school year. As I sat on my bed prepping and watching TV, a commercial for an online school came on and I had the strongest feeling that the Lord was telling me this would be my last year teaching. I was very excited about going back to school and so I shook it off, thinking that can’t be right!
As the school year continued, more and more signs started popping up, it was a rough year to say the least. The year started with severe behavior issues, difficulties with parents, and quite a few CPS calls. Interacting with CPS and having to put a student in a cop car, in September, that would take her to a foster family was really heart-wrenching. I didn’t know if I would ever see that student again or what the family would be like and she kept asking if she could come home with me. That broke my heart.
Luke drove right over to the school and comforted me. His first response when I told him the story was, “Is that an option? Could we actually take her?”. We weren’t approved, plus we lived with Luke’s parents at the time, so it didn’t seem like a possibility. But at that moment I knew we needed to start praying about adopting from the foster care system in the very near future.
Our dear friends, Russell and Janna, began the process to fost/adopt shortly after that day. I was so ridiculously excited for them and a
teeny bit jealous. Luke and I started picking their brains, maybe annoyingly. We wanted to know everything about the process!
The school year continued down a sad road, I called CPS several more times on many different students. I really started to fall into a dark sad place realizing what some of my students and their families go through. God really used that dark place to lead Luke and me.
In January, Luke and I started researching adoption agencies. I had always thought that you only used an agency if you were adopting out of the country or if you were doing a private adoption. I also thought that if you used an agency, that you would have to pay agency fees. That is NOT the case. We found out from Russell and Janna that there are agencies that you can use free of charge for adoptions through the foster care system. On a side not, I just want to let you know adopting from the foster care system is very low cost (I will cover cost in depth in another post). These agencies help people to navigate through child protective services, educate, and teach what to expect.
After researching for a week or so we decided to use the same agency as Russell and Janna, Koinonia Family Services. We know a lot of people that have used Koinonia and loved them! We were ready to get started!