Frank's Freedom

Meet Frank. He’s 13 years old, and is curious, busy, fun happy and bright. He has a mental delay, but that doesn’t stop him from being friendly, engaging and kind. He’s also an orphan in Eastern Europe. This means he is in an institution. If he is not adopted by age 16, he will be thrown out on the street with nothing but the clothes on his back and his “disabled orphan” status. Let me tell you more about Frank.

He’s little, about the size of a 7 year old. And he’s smart. He is in a group with teenage boys ages 16-24. He does puzzles and he does his chores diligently. He is very kind to the younger children. Frank is friendly and engaging. He likes being with the boys, but is happy being alone too. He plays appropriately with toys and is “all boy”. He could very easily function in a family. Frank is curious, smart, fun and sweet. He likes to play in the dirt and jump on the trampoline. Frank is independent, a good eater, is happy and content. Frank is physically healthy. He walks, runs, feeds himself, speaks, does puzzles and interacts with others well. He's a sweet boy who seems rather unaffected by his surroundings. He has no future where he's at, and without help, he's never getting out. Institutions are a one way ticket to nowhere. And this little boy deserves a future. This little boy will be a blessing to any family.

The Baker family has committed to adopt Frank and another boy, Emmitt. But international adoption is pretty expensive. The adoption would cost about $30,000. Reece’s Rainbow is an organization that helps with this cost. They set up grants for children in 25 countries around the world, and any money that is donated to these funds is given to the families to help with adoption fees. With Reece's Rainbow's help, the Baker family only needs about $10,000 to bring home both boys!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Left Behind With A Broken Heart.. Oh Please Don't Let It Be!

I thought surely no one would want me...
For my legs are not working you see...
What Mama or Papa would ever...
Want a little boy like me...
A boy who cannot walk or run...
Why surely they'd think he was no fun...
They'd think me worthless or so I thought...
Until one day a Mama came...
To my own orphanage!
She came to get a little girl...
And take her home with her!
This little girl is kind of like me...
She also cannot walk and yet...
A Mama came for her!
Do you suppose there's hope for me?
Is it possible that there just might be...
A Mom and Dad for me?
Oh how I'd love to have a Mom and Dad...
Who'd look inside of me...
And see that though my legs don't work...
I do indeed have the most important part...
A heart that longs for love...
And a mind to think and understand...
I'll know if I am left behind...
I'll feel it in my very heart...
I think my heart will even break...
If no one comes for me!
That Mama took some pictures...
Of my friends and I...
She said she'd try to find us Mom's and Dad's!
A tiny hope crept into my heart...
I was almost ready to cry at the thought...
That someone just MIGHT come for me!
One by one my friends have been chosen...
Their Mama's found them what a joy!
They'll soon be going home!
But oh how great will be my grief...
When one by one those Mama's come...
And take my friends away...
Oh then I'll know my fears were true...
And though my friends have Mom's indeed...
No one's chosen me!
I'll soon be left behind!
I don't know how I'll get along...
But I guess I'll just have to face the facts...
That it was just as I had thought...
Yes no one wants a boy like me...
My fears indeed were true!
My friends have not left just quite yet...
Do you suppose before they do...
A Mom and Dad could choose me too?
If only when their Mama's come...
They could bring the news...
That a Mom and Dad will come for me...
As soon as the paperwork's done!
That news would save my anxious heart...
From breaking right in two!
Please will you be my Mama?
I need a Daddy too...
Please don't leave me here alone...
When my friends go home!
To read Marcus' profile click here!
You can read what Renee (the Mama who met him) wrote about him at...
PS - It is likely that Marcus' friends' parents will not be able to tell him that he has a family even if one has chosen him by then (see Renee's post)...But that doesn't change the fact that he needs a family to choose him ASAP...  His tender heart will be so hurt and dejected when he realizes that ALL of his friends that asked for a family have been chosen and he's been left behind!  If you are in a position to adopt please consider Marcus!
Reposted from Saving His Sparrows

Friday, June 29, 2012

Brick Walls

"We had been there for a couple of weeks before we were given basically free access to the orphanage.  We had been tiptoeing around, hesitant to interact much with the other kids except those in Emma's groupa.  Thankfully, the other kids had no such hesitation.  They approached us like we were creatures at the zoo- staring, waving, talking to us to see if we would respond.

That's how we met most of them.  Alexis is not shy.  Tyler is like the total opposite of shy lol.  Erin was outgoing.  So many others who aren't available for adoption were equally as friendly. 

But one boy watched us from afar.  He rarely approached, but we knew he was talking about us with his friends because he wasn't subtle about it.  But he watched us from a distance, communicating only with our facilitator if she spoke first.

He was normally in a group of other kids, hanging towards the back.  He reminded me so much of a stray dog sometimes.  You know what I mean- the dog you see lurking around the edge of your yard, clearly starving for affection, his thin ragged body frozen in fear if you made direct eye contact.  You can picture that bit of dangling rope still affixed around his neck from where he had been tied up, the end frayed from where he had chewed loose.  He was the dog you wanted so much to love- to rub between his ears, to scratch down his spine so his leg would thump.  But he never would let you get close enough.  Someone had mistreated him- made him fear human touch and contact.  You had to settle for putting food out on the porch, hoping it was him eating it at night and not the raccoons.

That was Marcus.  I knew a bit of his story- our facilitator was the one who photographed him the year before.  The director and psychologist really wanted him to have a family.  Some kids do alright in an orphanage/institution setting.  Some seem to enjoy the camaraderie and communal approach to living but others clearly need more.  Marcus needs more.  Marcus wants more.

To refresh your memory, or if you're a new reader, to fill you in, Marcus is 9 years old.  He'll be ten at the end of the year.  He has spina bifida and uses a wheelchair.  He's quite smart, and attends school in the orphanage and from what I understand, does quite well.  He's quiet a lot of the time, but can definitely be "all boy" when he's with his buddies, as we saw when we were there.

He doesn't smile much.  Honestly, I don't think he has much to smile about.  I don't know all of his history, and to be quite honest, I'm not going to share the private details I do know about because I believe that's something that only his family will need to know, not the internet as a whole.  I just know he needs a family that is willing to help love him through his hurts and losses, and that he has a lot of potential, and that his future in EE is not encouraging, since he is stuck in a wheelchair in a country that has little or no accommodations for such.


 When we became therapeutic foster parents, we did a lot of training.  When I say a lot, I mean a LOT.  Think two months of classes, twice a week at least, for 3+ hours a night, plus Saturday classes.  Some of the training was specific- like CPR, bloodborne pathogens, non-violent restraint holds and verbal de-escalation techniques. But much of the training dealt with the big picture- how to love and rehabilitate a child who had suffered extreme loss, maltreatment, rejection, exposure to substance use, and neglect in their birth families, along with how to therapeutically parent children who had been through multiple placements due to placement disruption, rejection, and behavioral issues.

Children are meant to be loved and nurtured.  They are meant to be held and comforted.  They are meant to know that a parent's love is unconditional.

Sadly, for hundreds of thousands of children around the world, that doesn't work out.  Sometimes, loving parents die- as we have seen in the AIDS crisis in Africa and Eastern Europe.  Sometimes, parents just don't care enough about the right things, and so Child Protective Services gets involved and removes the child for their own safety.  Sometimes, parents make the choices not to parent because of issues in their own lives.

And sometimes, an entire country holds to a culture of hostility and misinformation about illegitimacy or disability that results in large amounts of children being placed into orphanages.  Sometimes a country has such a high level of poverty that parents feel they have no choice but to place their children into government run orphanages so they have access to food, medical care, shelter and school.

But regardless of the reason for the separation, it still creates a loss for the child.

When I work with clients in a clinical setting, they normally come to me with either a full psych assessment in their chart, or I would conduct one.  Before we could get started in addressing the issues, we had to have an idea of what the issues were that were contributing to the client's problems and situation.  
We would look at everything- past substance use, past criminal history, what type of family they grew up in, what type of family they have now, what supports and strengths they had, what medical conditions they had, what other diagnoses they had, what education and work history they had, if they had religious beliefs, and what their social life was like.  Each one of those things either contributed a "strength" of sorts, or gave insight into the issues they were experiencing.  
So many clients would come in with similar statements:  "I feel so alone"   "I feel like no one understands me"   "I feel like no one cares".  
Sadly, many had other similar statements:  "My dad left when he and my mom divorced when I was five, and I haven't heard from him since"   "My mom didn't want to be bothered with a kid, and she left me at my grandma's when I was seven"   "My parents did drugs and I was in and out of foster care most of my life"   "After my dad left, my mom got sick of looking at me.  When she hooked up with my stepdad, they had their own kids, and then no one wanted me around".  
What it amounted to was that each person had put up walls.  It wasn't an overnight thing.  Each rejection, each loss, each event or person that affected their life, resulted in a brick that added to their wall.  With every brick, the wall got a little taller and a little stronger.  It kept out a little more love- love that could have helped to heal them. 
The taller the brick wall got, the more shut off the person became from life.  It increased their isolation.  It blocked out the sunshine, the joy from coming into their life.  The wall that they built to protect their heart blocked them from seeing the ones who wanted to love them. The wall that they built to shelter them from rejection and loss left them alone and hurting, and no one could see in to help. 
A child who has experienced loss and rejection often has a very big wall up.  A child craves security and acceptance and without that, they struggle. Each brick represents a loss, or a rejection.  Sometimes, people don't look past the walls, or they don't even recognize the wall for what it is.  Sometimes a child can appear aloof, standoffish, shy, or even stuck up, when in truth, they're just trying to protect their fragile, wounded heart.  
Marcus was quiet.  When we spoke to him, we could see the pain in his face, the fear of rejection.  We know from our facilitator, the psychologist (who I count as a Christian friend and still talk to), the director, and the other kids that Marcus wants a family.  
But we saw the fear in his face- that he would be rejected.
It took six solid weeks of us being there every day, of us publicly cherishing Emma, for Marcus to gain hope that there really might be parents in America that actually want a kid with legs that don't work.  The very last week, he smiled just a bit when we spoke to him, just a tiny bit.  
I don't know all the details of the bricks in Marcus' wall.  I know that he told our facilitator last year that he wanted his legs covered in the photo that would be shown to potential parents, because he believed if they saw his useless legs that they would not want him.  I know he's ashamed of his inability to walk and that it makes him feel badly.  I know he's in an orphanage for kids with special needs and that his availability for international adoption is confirmed, which means either his family died or they put him there because they didn't want him or didn't feel like they could take care of him.  
His tender, little boy heart has been wounded.  
I know he goes to sleep at night and wakes up in the morning in a room full of other boys his age and is greeted by the nannies on staff for that shift, instead of a mommy and daddy of his own.  I know that he has friends, instead of brothers and sisters.  He eats off communal plates and drinks out of communal cups and wears communal clothes, instead of having things to call his own.  
His desire for a family has gone unanswered.
I know he goes to school and participates in musicals with his friends.  I know he plays and jokes with the boys in his groupa.  I know he rolls himself up and down the hallway for classes and therapy.  I know he is alone in his emotions and thoughts often and that he has been trained to be independent and self-sufficient. 
His need to be loved and nurtured has been neglected.
My heart is sad this week.  Last week, I was ecstatic- both Erin and Carter were moved to MFFM.  But then I realized a scary thing:  This meant that Marcus would be the only cognitively-typical kid who was photographed and who requested a family, who wasn't getting one.  
The children with Down Syndrome are kept in a separate groupa, away from the other kids.  They may have minimal if any understanding of what's going on downstairs, as the other children are adopted.  
But Marcus will know, because he will see it.  He and Tyler and Carter share a groupa.  He sees Sam and Duncan regularly because their classrooms are next to each other.  His groupa eats lunch with the girls groupa where Alexis, Patti and Erin live.  
For a boy who feared rejection because of his disability, every nightmare he dreamed is coming true.  
Part of me is dreading going back this summer to see the kids of 39.  Emma is so excited- and truthfully I am too.  It's going to be very cool to be there, to see these precious kids we left a few short months ago, and to know some of their families will already be there when we get there, and that the other are en route pending their paperwork completion.  Sam and Duncan, Alexis and Tyler, Patti and Erin and Carter and Pryce- each one of them are going to be over the moon happy!

But Marcus, dear little solemn-eyed Marcus, has no one coming for him. 

Did I not shout loudly enough for him?  
Should I have tried to get more pictures?
Did I fail him?

I know in my heart the answer is no.  It has to be no, because I know with all my heart that I'm not responsible in any way for the other kids getting families.  It doesn't have anything to do with me at all.  GOD- our Almighty Father- places the lonely in families.  I'm privileged to be sitting on the bleachers to watch it all happen, but it has nothing to do with me or what I've done or not done. 

I'm trusting that God has not left this little boy on my heart and the hearts of so many others without reason.  I'm trusting that he DOES have a family, somewhere out there.  Maybe they're praying about it.  Maybe they have more questions.  Maybe they're just not sure.  

If you are his family and you are reading this, I'm praying for you today.  There's a bunch of us praying.  We love Marcus- and although many of us would love to have him in our families, we've each felt that God was saying no to us.  We're praying and trusting that somewhere out there, God is telling the family for Marcus "Yes, go get him, he's your son."  

If you have questions, please email me, or join us on Facebook in the RR room.  


Later this summer, we will carry our beautiful daughter back through the door of the orphanage that had been her home.  This time, she will have parents with her and it will just be for a visit.  We will get to hug the sweet children we grew to love this past winter and tell them how special they are.  I'm pretty sure many will ask if we found their families yet. 
Part of me hopes that I don't see Marcus, because I don't think I can face him.  
I'm a terrible poker player.  With the ones that have families coming, even though I cannot tell them anything, I can smile.  I know my eyes will give away my happiness and I hope that comforts their hearts.  
If Marcus asks, I don't know what I will do.  How can I smile with joy if I know in my heart no one has committed to him?  Will he see me avoiding his eyes?  Will he know?
Another brick on the wall.  
I believe firmly in waiting on God's timing.  When I was in EE this winter, I had hoped so much that I could tell Sam and Duncan before I left that they had families coming. Alexis and Tyler too- because they were so heartbroken.  But that wasn't God's plan.  

But I think it would be so incredibly amazing to leave here this summer headed back to Orphanage 39 knowing that ALL of the kids we met had families.  Especially Marcus- the one who believed most of all that no one would want him.  What a victory that would be for love!"
Written by Renee

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Wonder of Boys: Marcus

"[This] Monday Miracle post [was] part of a blog blitz for Marcus. Many bloggers are working together to bring attention to Marcus in hopes of finding him a family as quickly as possible. Every child needs and deserves a family, but Marcus' story is particularly compelling.

Carter's family found him!

You may remember this boy, Carter, from my Motherless Day post. As you can see from the left sidebar, Carter's forever family has found him! This is great news for Carter! Unfortunately for Marcus, it's simply more confirmation that no one wants him. You see, Marcus lives in an orphanage with three friends, Carter, Pryce, and Tyler. All three of those boys now have families. But Marcus doesn't. Marcus still waits. Marcus will watch all his friends leave, and he will be left behind.

And Marcus knows why. Marcus "knows" that the reason no one wants him is because he has spina bifida and his legs don't work. Marcus "knows" that families don't want kids in wheelchairs. Marcus "knows" that if people know he has a disability, they will not want him. That is why Marcus covered his legs when a facilitator took his picture to post on the waiting child list.

Marcus is ashamed of his legs.

But you see, Marcus is still a very little boy. Marcus is only nine. He doesn't yet know that there are people out there who will love him regardless. He doesn't yet know that there are people who will advocate for him because of his disability. And most important, Marcus doesn't yet know that there is a wide, wide world out there for him to explore and that he has the potential to make all his dreams come true. Marcus doesn't know this because he is still very young, and his world right now is that of an orphanage, where again and again he is passed over in favor of kids whose legs work.

Marcus is described as smart, communicative, and friendly. He wants to be adopted. An adoptive mother who recently met Marcus had this to say about him:

"He just turned 9 and he looks about 7 at best. He’s a small guy and pretty serious natured from what we’ve seen. He’s friendly but focused, if that makes sense. He’s the kind of kid that sits back and observes, taking everything in. He goes to classes, so he must be smart enough, but we haven’t talked to him as much as we’ve seen him. He plays around with the other boys, but is very quick to obey the teacher when she gives instructions. He too has spina bifida and is very modest about it. It is obvious he does not want to be judged by his disability but just wants to be a normal little boy. I cannot imagine how horrific it would be for him to be transferred to a mental institution. He seems well liked by the other boys, but is more quiet and less boisterous.

When I look in his face, I see a kid who wants to be accepted and encouraged, and who has a fighter’s spirit- refusing to let life, or EE [Eastern Europe], get him down. He has a lot of determination to reach his goals whether they are getting to a certain place in the building or following instructions- that same determination is what will propel him to success in the real world, IF someone adopts him and gives him a chance. And I have to say, he is a cutie pie. He has no idea of it, but he is adorable. There’s something just intriguing about his cute little face- the face of a young boy- and his serious focus- like the intensity of an adult. You can see he thinks things through and doesn’t miss much!"

Another adoptive parent noted that Marcus does well in school and is in the "smart" classes for kids his age.

This is Marcus in school. The parent who took this picture noted that his notebook was on the desk in front of him, and he was taking notes just prior to this picture being snapped. He had paused in his note-taking to look over at someone who was speaking.

Marcus' future, should he remain in the orphanage, is not bright. He will either be transferred to an adult mental institution, where he will remain forever bedridden because his legs don't work, or he will be dismissed from the orphanage at age 16, a child with a disability alone in the world, secure in his "knowledge" that because his legs don't work, he is unwanted and undesirable. 

But ...

Marcus' desire for a family burns so bright that even though he "knows" he is unwanted because his legs don't work, he mustered the courage to pose for this photograph, knowing it would be seen by potential adoptive parents. Knowing that his disability would be seen.

Remember the picture at the top of the page? This is the full version of it. This is the picture that Marcus bravely posed for after witnessing another family come to his orphanage and adopt a little girl whose legs don't work. This is how courageous Marcus is. This is how much he yearns for a family to love him.

Marcus currently has approximately [$3,226.43] in his adoption grant. Please join in this Monday Miracle Marcus blitz and share Marcus' picture, and his story, with everyone you can. Marcus' family is out there. They want him and they love him. They just haven't found him yet. But they will! And you can help make that happen. Please donate to Marcus' adoption grant. Every penny counts. Please share Marcus on your Facebook page, your blog, your Twitter account, and with all your friends and acquaintances. Please don't let this nine year old boy continue to "know" that he is unworthy because his legs don't work. Marcus deserves better than that!"

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Introducing the families of 39!

Here is Carter's family!
"Jason and Denise have been married for 14 years. They have 6 children ages 1-11. Denise has watched several families even as a young girl adopt children, none of them were children with special needs, though. As a matter of fact, before watching a fellow MOMYS friend adopt a very special little girl from Bulgeria (Blessing of Verity) Jason and Denise never knew such conditions even existed for children that had these needs. After realizing such conditions did indeed exist their hearts were broken, open and softened for children in these situations.
The “call” to adopt did not come for over a year later, when a special young girl was turning 16 and would soon be moved from her “home orphanage” to a place she did NOT deserve to be sent to. HOW COULD THIS BE? they cried out… HOW? The Collins’ 9 year old son was so very moved by this story and began praying that this young lady would find a family VERY VERY SOON. (maybe even be his family). As it turned out another WONDERFUL family was much more prepared to move FAST and bring this girl home to her new family. THAT was the DOOR that swung OPEN THE FLOOD GATES….
A few months later Carter caught Denise’s eye and she shared with Jason and the rest of the family…. yes indeed– this child BELONGED in their family– It was a feeling they had read about– but to experience that “KNOWING FEELING” was so peaceful and exciting!!
The Collins’ are working as hard as they can to proceed through this process as soon as possible to bring CARTER home… but they ask for your support both in prayer for this process and if you are led to help them financially to bring CARTER HOME.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog

Here is Alexis' Family!
"The Duval family was already in process with Reece’s Rainbow to adopt a 6 year old boy. The subject had come up several times about adopting two children at once but Jim felt that it would be better to get one child home and then think about another child. In the meantime Sherrie had been advocating for Alexis hoping that she would find a family. From a contact that had met Alexis personally Sherrie knew that Alexis was an amazing young girl and a family would be blessed to have her for a daughter. The more Jim heard about Alexis the more he agreed that she would be an amazing daughter for some family. Finally, the Lord showed Jim that they were that family and Alexis was going to be their daughter. So they are in the beginning stages of the process to make a second trip this year, overseas, to bring home Alexis. Although, all the children are excited about having a new sister, Patience, the Duvals 9 year old, can’t wait to have a girl at home with her. So many preparations are being made aka shopping for pink, girly things while awaiting the necessary paperwork to be done.

Follow the Duval family’s adoption journey on their blog at

Here is Duncan's family!
"Cathy had been cruising RR for almost a year looking at all the sweet babies that needed Mommas.  But Tim seemed complacent at best.  Then Cathy happened to click on the tab for Newly Listed children.  There was Duncan.  Cathy has some experience with Cerebral Palsy through a family member.   So as she read Duncan’s story, she became angrier and angrier that this bright boy could face a mental institution .  She  grabbed Tim and said “Read that!”  To her complete amazement he responded by asking what the  first step was to adoption!
They have three boys at home already and feel that Duncan will fit right in.  They have a very short window to make this adoption happen for Duncan before he “ages out” of the system.
God has already answered many prayers (some that they didn’t even know they had!) surrounding this adoption.  Please pray that Duncan can join the “Daughton Gang” very soon!
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at

Here is Samuel's family!
"Shane and Kim Stokes are the parents of 3 children who are 13, 11 and 7. Their youngest son has Down Syndrome. Since his birth, they have become a “resource” for other families in their community who have children with DS. One of the families in their city was given their name as “someone you HAVE to talk to” as they were adopting 2 children with DS in the near future. This contact was their introduction to Reece’s Rainbow. They assisted in bringing these 2 children home and were a part of their homecoming with great joy for them and their new family!
During that time, Kim started “stalking” RR and found child after child for whom she prayed would find their forever families. Each one found their forever home until she came across a child who stole her heart but never found his family and was close to being transferred to an institution. It wasn’t time for the Stokes to adopt this child, but it became their mission to find him a home. He was home a year later with a family in their Sunday School department!!! Now, they are “Uncle Shane” and “Aunt Kim” to that sweet boy and love having him so near!
Shane is an attorney who handles 70+ adoptions each year, and they thought their involvement in adoptions would be through his job and through them assisting families with resources and support in adoptions. But the Lord had other plans for their family. About a month and a half ago, they each (independently of one another) saw a post on FaceBook (from a mutual friend) of a teenage boy (named “Sam” on the website) who was aging out of an orphanage in Eastern Europe and would be put out onto the streets in just a couple of months. His picture and story tugged at their hearts, and thus began their quest to find a home for Sam. They both knew (together with their family) within just a few days of talking and praying that they were to be Sam’s forever home.
They are anxious to get Sam home to join his brother and sisters and to make up for so much lost time!! He is already loved and has a community of family and friends waiting to meet and welcome him home!
5/30/12—APPT RECVD
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at

Here is Bernadette (Jessica) and Mason's family!
"The Rogers family is at it again! After being home only 4 months with their precious Prince Malachi and Princess Clare, they have felt the call to return. Erika is always looking on the Reece’s Rainbow site and praying for the children there. She saw an urgent need for 2 teenage boys that had to be adopted quickly. That got the wheels turning and she talked to Mel about if they thought an older child would fit in their family. They have 9 children ages 24-2, with 7 still at home. They knew what would happen to the older children once they turned 16 and felt that they couldn’t save them all but they could at least save one. When they saw Miss Bernadette’s face, they knew she was their daughter. With this energetic family, one is never enough, so they looked at all the children at Bernadette’s institution. Little “Monkey Man” Mason stood out as a ball of energy that they could see the other boys wrestling and playing with.
Having just completed an adoption, the family would appreciate any financial help and prayers to rescue these two children who are living on borrowed time.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at

Here is Tyler's family!
"Eddie and Bonnie first met on-line while they were both attending college in different states.  After a semester of friendly chatter they finally met in person and things just “clicked”.  Following a long-distance courtship, they were married in 1992.  The two have been blessed with (3) beautiful girls (17), (14), and (7) and one boy (9).  Another boy will be the perfect addition to this family.
They have had a lot of special needs experience through the years from Bonnie’s previous volunteer work as well as their middle daughter’s challenges following meningitis and a stroke at 1 year old.  They are “old hats” at reading doctor reports, IEP’s, and scheduling appointments.
It is with the greatest of faith that they step out and look forward to adding another son to their family through an online adoption ministry with the hope that it turns out as well as their on-line romance did 20 years ago!

Pryce has a family, but there isn't a page on RR.

Here is Patti's family!
"Sam and Laura met in college and the rest is history! They have been married 17 years and have five beautiful children. Their oldest was born with a deletion on his third chromosome, resulting in physical and cognitive disabilities. His presence in their lives has shown them the beauty and worth of every human being. Now fourteen years old, the challenges presented by his disabilities have taught Laura and Sam to trust the Lord to provide, and He always has! Their other four children are twelve, eight, five, and three years old. All five of their children are biological, but adoption has always been on Laura’s heart. It wasn’t the direction the Lord led them, however, until recently. Laura came across the Reece’s Rainbow website around Christmas last year, and began following some of the families’ journeys in adoption. While the idea of adopting a child with disabilities was great in theory, it didn’t seem possible for their family. That is, until Laura read about a young girl named Patti! Now the family is taking one baby step of faith at a time, until they can bring their new daughter home to meet her brothers and sisters.

Erin's family has not been announced yet!

Now there are four kids left at 39 available for adoption. 
From Renee:
MarcusHe'll be 10 this December.  He has spina bifida and uses a wheelchair.  I've met him, personally, and talked with him.  He's sweet.  He's reserved.  And he's sad, because he truly believes no one will want a kid who doesn't walk.   He goes to school and is in the typical classes for a kid his age.  He was one of the first kids to get his photo taken by the facilitator- one of the first ones to admit he would like to be adopted last spring.  And now, he's the very last of that group of kids to be waiting.  Everyone else has been chosen- except for him.  So, he's going to see nine other kids be adopted this year (ten if you count our Emma from a couple of months ago) and no one come for him.  

The grief for me here is this:  Spring of 2011, he refused to let the facilitator take pictures of his legs or even see his legs, because he was so ashamed of them and felt like no family would want him because his legs were shriveled and useless.  February of 2012, he watched us there for six weeks, choosing to adopt Emma, whose legs were also useless and malformed, and he would stare at us.  He clearly didn't understand why we would want a kid that couldn't walk.  However- something about us being there and wanting Emma despite her wheelchair-dependent status touched Marcus' heart.  He agreed to be photographed again and this time, he took a big risk- he didn't cover his legs.  

I am literally in tears and nearly sick at my stomach at the thought of him realizing everyone else has a family and he does not- because I KNOW he's going to automatically assume it's because of his legs.  The thought of him feeling that rejected and passed over, I'd rather be punched in the gut than feel the way I do right now thinking about it.  

MabelShe turned seven in May.  Just last month, she had a birthday, and considering that she's stuck in a "Down Syndrome groupa" where they think she's incapable of learning, understanding anything or being a part of normal life, I can pretty much guarantee that she didn't even have a small birthday celebration.  I would doubt this sweet girl even knows what a birthday party is.  We don't know a lot about Mabel- we weren't allowed to see her at all.  I know that she's very very small for her age- the facilitator described her as "toddler size" and in fact, thought she was maybe 3 years old.  She was stunned to find out she was six, almost seven.  I know, from looking at her pictures that she likely has dry skin and probably some sensory issues- completely expected considering where she's lived and what she's known.  But there are many kids that have been adopted with sensory issues- Occupational Therapy helps.  Better diet and sleep and opportunities to live normal life help.  Lotion to help that chapped skin will help.  Mabel needs a family- she truly truly truly NEEDS a family- a special one, that can look past her clearly not photoshopped pictures and see the treasure within.  

ClariceThis kiddo, who looks about 6 at best, is going to turn 13 years old next month.  July in the USA means celebrating our freedom and independence.  Unless a miracle occurs and a family steps forward for Clarice, our Independence Day 2015 will signal her never-ending imprisonment, because she'll be locked away forever.  Thirteen years of not having a family, thirteen years of not having anyone to call her own.  Three years from permanent transfer to a mental institution, all because she has Down Syndrome.  Clarice may also have FAS, it's hard to tell.  But even if she does, I know that God can still provide a wonderful family for her- a family with strong supports, patience and love overflowing.  A family called by God to love the unloved, to cherish the challenges and to step out in faith to make a difference to a special child. 

Greta:   (I love Greta- she looks like my brother, if he were a girl and had Down Syndrome lol)  Sweet Greta is precariously close to lifelong institutionalization.  In November, when we're all celebrating Thanksgiving, she'll be turning 14 years old.  Only two short years from permanent transfer.  Please- someone help me find this sweet "looks like a first grader" teen a family soon- so we don't end up in the same crisis that we did for Bernadette- searching desperately at the last minute for her family.   This little darling has real potential- she just needs someone to teach her how to be a little girl, a daughter, a beloved granddaughter- instead of "just another orphan". 

Friday, June 8, 2012

Let's All Help!

Remember Sullivan (the namesake of this blog)? If you do, remember he is now called Sam. He is thriving with his family. Now, he's going to have a sister, but his family needs all the help they can get so they can go save her!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Monday For Marcus

Well, if you didn't know, Carter is on My Family Found Me...
And now Marcus is the only one left (of the ones Renee met). So all us RR people are rallying together and blogging for him! So, let's see. Here is what Marcus' RR page says:
"Boy, Born December 2002
Marcus is a sweet little boy!  He is 9 years old and hoping for his own forever family.  He was born with spina bifida.  He is not able to walk on his own.
From his medical records:  myelocele; Q 5, hydrocephaly;  flail legs with damage of functions of pelvic organs.
From our facilitation team: I personally saw this boy and talked to him. He is a very smart boy. Unfortunately he cannot walk at all, and he uses a wheelchair … he was uncomfortable with careful attention to him, particularly to his disability.   He told me that he wants to be adopted., and that’s why he allowed to make a picture of him.  He did not want to demonstrate his disability, so he covered his legs with a blanket.  
Several kids had been adopted from this orphanage before, and the Director is rather open to foreign adoption. She keeps in touch with all the families who adopted the children from her orphanage. She showed me only the kids who demonstrated their wish to be taken to the family. And when I made pictures all of them confirmed their desire to be adopted. I believe the Director will be very glad if this child is taken to the good family.”
The boy is very smart, communicative, and friendly. He wants be adopted.
More photos available, married couples only."
His fund is growing everyday!
June 1st- $2,504
June 2nd- $2,954