This was written June, 2008:
Our little foster son is the full sibling to our adopted daughter. He's 10 months old. He was first in the hospital, then in a foster home, then with a relative placement, and finally when it was certain the birth parents were not going to make it again, the relatives, an aunt and uncle wanted him to grow up here at our house with his sister, so he moved in with us the day before he turned six months. When they relinquished him to us, their main request was that I let him continue to know the family, and especially that I would let him go to their son's birthday parties. Their son has Down's, and they are hoping that the two boys will be friends.
So, this weekend was the little boys birthday, and my four youngest and I went to the lake to their party. I went a little apprehensibly. I wasn't sure of the reactions of the people I hadn't met yet, especially since I adopted Angel-Leah through the foster care system after she had been taken from her parents, and the baby is still my foster son.
This uncle's family was there and the paternal grandma of the two I have, also some friends of theirs - and to my surprise and joy - the older half brother of my two children that I had never met. When they started to introduce him to me, I just said, "You are their brother." He smiled and said yes. He looks so amazingly like the two I have. I think his eyes are even a lighter blue than Angel-Leah. He is a very handsome boy, and best of all, his countenance was very sweet.
Angel-Leah wanted NOTHING to do with him, which I was sorry about. She was overwhelmed with being treated like a long lost relative, and so I tried not to push her too much, and just let her do what she felt comfortable with.
Later, we went to the beach. The paternal grandma and aunt took over the baby, so rather than get wet, I sat on the shore to watch the little ones. Unknown to me, (but I was told by two different people later) this big brother sat on a ledge and watched me for a while. In a bit, he came over and sat by me. I laugh at the contrast we must have seemed to people on the crowded beach: a very conservatively dressed, headcovered lady, and a young man with hair to his shoulders, tattoos, and saggy pants with blue underwear showing. But he was so sweet and - humble is the only word I can think of to call him.
He said he wanted to thank me for taking his brother and sister. He said that his childhood was HORRIBLE, with two drug addicted parents, mental and physical illness of his parents, and living off the state. He said he never had anything, including stability. He said he feels like I have rescued his siblings from the things he went through. I told him how Angel-Leah sometimes grieves for her birth mother, and he said no amount of grieving could ever compare to the things that happened to him as he grew up. He said that when she is older, he would like to explain to her what she has been rescued from. He told me that he prays for me every night, and he is grateful to me.
But it's obvious, somewhere, somehow, someone cared about this boy. Someone prayed for him. Someone taught him about God, and it shines through.