Hi, I'm Anna. For the past few weeks, I have been helping Caitlin run Respite Redefined's Instagram account. I have been following RR for many months and one day it occurred to me ask Caitlin if she needed any help. After a phone conversation and a couple of emails, she graciously handed over Instagram and there's not many days that go by that we're not texting each other new ideas.
But here's the thing. I'm not a foster-adopt mom. That makes me feel a little weird to say. I do have 2 children, but as a bio mom. I'm sure it makes everyone wonder what right I have to host any little bit of a foster/adopt page. I don't really have an answer for you. Not a satisfactory one. But I saw a need and I jumped on board. I can say I have passion for orphans and orphan care and that I take it seriously when Jesus commands us to remember them.
Many years ago, the Lord put on my heart a softness for orphans. The desire to care for them has grown in big ways. My husband and I never discussed it pre-marriage, so when I began expressing interest in adoption after our first daughter was born, he was almost completely closed off to the idea. Then daughter number 2 was born, and he really shut down in the subject of adoption. Why mess up such a perfect family with so much unknown? I tried to understand where he was coming from, but in reality I became bitter. I thought the hole being made in my heart, that only adoption could fill, would just stay a hole forever.
Over the next few months I released my anger and resentment and began praying for our hearts instead. I prayed for his heart to be changed and transformed, and an openness to replace his fear. But I also prayed for my heart; that if it was me needing to change that my mind and heart might be refocused on the right ministry for our family. Bless him, he attempted to oblige me. We talked about what country we might adopt from, thinking this entire time it was international adoption we were meant to do. When we began discovering more of the orphans in our own city, we even attended the state's intro class in fostering. We could tell though, it just wasn't time. I wanted him to be 110% on board. I hoped to see him become more excited than even myself. Several months passed where we dropped the subject completely. I didn't want to keep bringing something up that was clearly so uncomfortable to discuss.
You guys. Last week, out of the clear blue, he told me he was ready. And I could tell this time, he really meant it. He wasted no time. Within the same week we were in our first foster-adopt class with our agency. We'll complete all the necessary classes by the end of April. It's such the tip of the iceberg, but it has been a huge step for us. My heart is overflowing!
Before we had reached any of these decisions, I had already been working with Caitlin a few weeks. I never intended to be a poser, and I hope if you're paying attention to the posts, you won't think I have been falsifying who I am. I'm not a foster-adopt mom. But I stand in the same circle with all of you hoping and willing to support in any way I can. Caitlin has big dreams for this place, they go far beyond a podcast and a blog and I am so excited to play even the smallest of rolls in these dreams or in this community. I hope to be sharing our foster-adopt journey with you as we go. I will be leaning on you guys to help me with tough stuff, and I hope to help others curious about the process to see it step by step.
Thank you guys for being such an open and honest community. It has helped open my eyes to the great need of loving homes in my very own city.
Anna is a stay at home mom of 2, a police wife, and Caitlin's assistant for Respite Redefined. They hope to be bringing home their own foster babes in the very near future.