A good friend of mine several years ago decided she wanted to give back in a big way. She and her husband went for classes so they could become foster parents to those children in need.
My friend, never having had children of her own, had an abundance of love to share and wanted to help in some small way those children from broken homes, children taken away from unfit parents and born into dire circumstances.
Sometimes the parents just needed a break from life and had to be counseled on how to parent. Child and Family services, brought many children to her doorstep, some for a short time and others for a prolonged visit.
Each child had their own set of circumstances and had lived in several homes before they reached hers. She cared for them as best she could; some came with severe emotional problems that were difficult to deal with.
And then one night ... her and her husband’s lives changed.
In the middle of the night, a social worker brought her a premature baby in a carrier with only the clothes on her back. She was 2 months old and was a tiny bundle sunk down in her carrier.
Of course my friend took her in and immediately went out to buy all the things she needed to care and nurture a young baby with many needs. At that point, she did not know if she would have her for a day, a month or a year, but she was happy to give her all the love and care she needed.
Amazingly, this little girl was from the same ethnic background as my friend and looked exactly like her. It was like a gift from the heavens; many years ago, her sister had passed away and their baby pictures were almost identical.
The months quickly passed and her biological parents were unable to take care of her. The question of adoption came up.
The mother did have allowed visits to her child but knew she could not offer her the life she so deserved. She gave her up for my friends to adopt.
It became a dream come true as my friend grew to love this little, thriving bundle of joy and so desired a child of her own. She and her husband initiated the long, arduous process to adopt. It has taken many months, and has proven to have many hurdles, but she can now seen the end of the tunnel.
This month, her little angle has become 2 years of age and is the light of my friend’s live. She couldn’t imagine life without her and I am so delighted that she will finally become the mother of a child she wanted for so many years.
They all are truly a match sent from heaven.
As she and her husband have seen first hand, there are so many local children in this area that are in need of a loving family to either stay with or join permanently.
It is a selfless gesture to provide a safe and nurturing home life for these kids. I had no idea what has to occur during the fostering process, and my friend opened my eyes to a side of life most of us never see.
There are wonderful, innocent children out there who, by no fault of their own, were born into circumstances out of their control.
My friends will still offer their home to children in need but are now fulfilled in their hearts with the love of their lives, their little bundle of joy.
Judith Whitehead lives in East Amherst