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July 28th, 2007, 07:56 PM
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lblackst lblackst is offline
Super Mommy
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: TR, SC
Posts: 874
Originally, I planned to get married and have children as soon as possible. After trying, unsuccessfully, to conceive, my husband and I decided to explore other options. We began to consider being foster parents. We could help a child, we reasoned, while trying to decide the best way to get one of our own.

Foster parenting provided us with an opportunity to parent and we loved it. After our first client was reunited with his mother, we received a call about a little 6 year old girl. Parenting this child with a history of trauma and neglect was not smooth sailing. She tested us and pushed limits to see if we also would send her away. She acted out in ways that I did not like or initially understand.

But, as we worked with Candice, and God worked in her, she sparkled more and more. She is a wonderful treasure. She is gentle, loving, giving, and forgiving. She is bright, talented, creative, and funny. We finalized her adoption when she was 9.

We continued to minister to many children with special needs. Then one day, sweet Rodney entered our lives. We visited him at the children’s hospital. Besides Down’s syndrome, Rodney’s chart listed numerous medical conditions, and at the age of 4 had been given less than a year to live. We had to be trained in how to feed him, administer his medicine, care for his tracheotomy, adjust his oxygen levels, and what to do when he stopped breathing. We brought him home so that he wouldn’t have to die alone.

But in a testament to God’s grace, modern medicine, and the healing power of a mother and father's love, Rodney is now an exuberant 7 year old. Also known as “Hot Rod,” he keeps moving until bedtime: playing, learning, helping his dad and laughing. A family court judge “officially” added him to our family in November 2006.

We now have plenty of activity in our home- in December we became parents to a third child, this time the bundle of joy we envisioned welcoming into our home nine years ago. As I look at my two beautiful daughters and high-spirited son and breathe in their smell of strawberry lip balm, Cheez-Its, and baby formula, I know we have the family God designed for us.

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<div align="center"><span style="font-family:Verdana">“The doors we open and close each day decide the lives we live.” </div></span>
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