Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here I am. Send me!” Isaiah 6:8
Most of you know and can imagine that the last few months have been very hard on us. Going from one child to four children has been probably the hardest thing we have ever had to do. Not only that but the children being the ages they are and with the needs that they have, this time has been especially grueling.
When we decided last January to pursue an adoption from foster care, we wanted just that: an adoption of two siblings who were in foster care but up for adoption. We were willing to take any age 0-10. As the months went on we became more impatient with waiting on our child and waiting on the licensing process. Then a major kink in the plan came when we found out we had a foster license but no adoptive license 10 months in. We decided we would try fostering. The call came for the kids we have now just a few short weeks after making that decision. 3 kids, all under 4. We never thought we wanted three, especially not that young. However we prayed and begged God for an answer and we believe the answer was yes, we should take these three foster children into our home.
From the first week the kids were here we have gotten the question if we want to adopt these children. We’ve always said we think we would but we never know. In three short months we have grown to love and care for the children very much. We have sacrificed much for them and while they have been here, they have grown tremendously. They are totally different children from the first night they arrived.
They are beautiful, funny, lovable, cuddly, fun to be around, silly, smart, affectionate and full of joy. They make life difficult but better all at the same time. All of you know that my life since they have been here has been nothing short of insane. We have battled caseworkers and dealt with bio-mom issues since the beginning. The day to day is absolute chaos. We have our good days and our bad days, just like most families with small children.
But the good days are what makes the decision we have made so hard.
We have been talking a lot lately about the kids and their future with us. We have gone back and forth on adoption and if this is the right thing for our family. Our plan was to wait until the childrens’ court date in March. However, this week Michael and I really sat down and talked about what direction we felt God leading us in. After much prayer and tears we decided to ask the agency to move the children to another home.
We found out this week that the children are likely to be put up for adoption in the next couple of months. This led to us really needing to decide if we were to be their adoptive home. We both came to the prayerful decision that we are not. Therefore, we felt it only right to let the agency know so they could begin looking now for a loving, hopefully ADOPTIVE home for the kids. So, wherever they go from here will more than likely be their forever family.
We are beyond sad. This is, by far, the hardest decision we have ever had to make. We have deep sorrow in our hearts to think of not having the children with us. But, at the same time, we have peace. We have the peace of God that surpasses all understanding and we know this is the absolute right decision for us and for them. We are scared. I fear that no one can love them or care for them the way we have. However, this last Sunday at church, God spoke to my heart through Mark’s message when he talked about our fears holding us back. It is not our responsibility to care for these kids. They are God’s children whom He has entrusted us with for this time. He has them in the palm of His hand and will continue to mark out their path. We know now, we were meant to love them for a time, and let them go.
This experience has taught us so much. Our marriage is the strongest it has ever been and only grows stronger every day. We know now that foster care is not for us, just as we suspected. We know that three children at one time is too many and beyond what we can handle as a family. We have learned so much about “the system,” good and bad.
Most of you will ask what is next for us. We plan on taking a long break and just being the Mears 3 again. We plan to continue to uphold our foster care license to enable us to do respite care for other foster families who need a break or need to go out of town. We also firmly believe an adoption from foster care is in our future, we just have no idea when. Keeping our license will make that process a lot smoother when the time does become right to pursue adoption again.
The kids are not leaving tomorrow! Our adoption agency is working hard to find a family which best suits the needs of our kids and who would be committed to adopting them. The hope, again, is that this family will be their last. We hope they can stay in Tallahassee and we can continue to see them and be a resource to their adoptive family. The transition from our home to theirs will be a slow one to enable the kids to get used to their new parents before moving in for good. We don’t know when the move will occur, it will depend on which family is chosen and their situation. It could be 1-3 more months. And, until then, we will love the kids the way we always have.
We ask that you support us during this time. Although you may not agree with our decision, we ask you recognize it as one that was prayerful and ordained by God and trust that we listen for His voice. Please continue to pray for us and the children and that the right family would be found in a timely manner. As a side note, if you have donated or given us ANYTHING for the kids since they’ve been with us, rest assured they will leave us with all the things you have given them and will be blessed to have those items including toys, shoes, clothes, etc. etc. etc.
Thank you for your continued support.