Parenthood requires love not DNA

May 10, 2021

Parenthood requires love not DNA

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, on any given day there are nearly HALF A MILLION children in the United States foster care system - and the number is rising*. Over a quarter of a million of these innocent children are eligible for adoption and wait on average four years to be adopted* - if they ever are. The average time spent in foster care is nineteen months**. Children have foster care have grim statistics: repeating the cycle with their own children, teen or unplanned pregnancies, criminal records, lack of education, homelessness, and more plague these vulnerable and innocent children by no fault of their own. 
Our family has fostered over a dozen kids in the past 10 years from newborn to 5 years older, single and sibling sets, all with a variety of needs and life circumstances. Each child holds a special place in our hearts and memories. While our parents aren’t currently fostering, we still keep in touch with our foster siblings and pre-pandemic got to catch up in real life! Fostering is not easy but it is a chance to show a child their life has meaning, purpose, and value and that they are loved and wanted - even if for only a short time. 
Our family is part of another set of statistics as well: foster parents who have adopted a foster child from care. About 51% of children adopted out of foster care are adopted by their foster families*.
On May 23, we celebrate our sister Meysha’s “Adoption Day”. Meysha first joined our family as a short term foster baby and it quickly became apparent she was meant to be a Travis. While her adoption journey is her own story and one that we won’t share until if/when she decides to, we can say that foster children are amazing little humans! When we celebrate Meysha’s Adoption Day, we are also honoring her biological heritage and ensuring that she knows as much about where she came from as she does where she is now. Adopting a child, from foster care or elsewhere, does not and should not erase their past. Meysha is part of our forever family because of her biological family. We couldn’t love Meysha without loving ALL of her! 
Whether or not you think foster care or adoption may be something you can do, there are always other ways to help! Many foster children are shuffled around without any personal items or even a bag. It’s heartbreaking to think of children landing in a new home with a trash bag of their things.  Find ways to be able to gift a child with new clothes or a suitcase.  Foster parents sometimes have little or no time before a child is placed in their home; offer to babysit, drop off dinner, help run errands and always pray for everyone involved. 
*As of 2018 studies
**As of 2017 studies 



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