We Became an Instant Family • 4 min read
Becoming an instant family was a mix of every emotion in the book. From the initial phone call, to the prayers that didn't make sense, to the next day picking up two 19 month-olds, Hannah and I were new to this, naive, and yet full of hope.
And, I had never even changed a diaper before…
From having zero kids to twins who could barely communicate their needs and wants was a very hard transition. "Oh, I can't imagine taking in two kids versus one…" people said to us, as if we were on some impossible journey against our will. (I know it came from a good heart, but even words from a good heart don't always feel good to hear.) Truly, Hannah and I didn't know what it was like to have one kid! So, in this case ignorance was bliss. Plus, our heart are to serve God, and He made it very clear in our hearts that we were to take the twins in our home and love on them.
In all ways, it didn't make sense, but how often do faith and love make sense? Good things often do not come easily.
Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you. — James 1:27 NLT
Here's some learnings or fun experiences we had with them:
- They say "bee-bee" to reference their blankets and "da-da" to reference their sippy cups.
- "Puppies, I wuv youuuuu"
- Kiddos need consistency in love and routines, and that helps them feel safe and thrive.
- Cries often means there's discomfort and a need to be addressed. Deciphering those needs is hard, but also so rewarding when you unlock the code.
- I absolutely loved seeing Hannah step into momma mode. She loved the kiddos so well, and they adored her to no end.
- If you say, "Hey, do not lick that pole", the kid will lick the pole.
- Nothing is sweeter than baby cuddles and baby hugs.
- Parenting is a different kind of tiring, a very rewarding one.
- When you become a parent, you sacrifice many freedoms, and that's okay. There's a time for everything. And when becoming a parent, it's a time to love.
- It takes a village to raise a household. You need loving community to step in and help love on you and the kiddos. God designed us to be in community because we need one another.
- One time the kids were laid down for nap time (a perfect time for me to nap, too), and I kept hearing "da-da, I wuv youuuuu". So sweet!
- Kid's all have unique personalities that are powerful in their own ways. Do not treat every single one as the same, because we do not all approach the world the same way.
- Even when my health fails, a kid doesn't need a super energetic father… They need a father that's present and loving. Hannah's encouragement in that was so healing.
- Tantrums make you want to throw a tantrum yourself, while sweet times of cuddling and watching a movie make it all worth it.
- Doing good things is often hard, yet it's worth the work. Love is beautiful work.
We did our best to love on those kiddos, and I am confident they felt seen, heard, known and loved deeply. And yes, past-tense… After loving on them for a month, court cases, and All The Things™️, through prayer, tears, and a lot of hugs, we determined it was best to loose control and allow a foster family to love on them for the long-term.
Nothing is harder than saying "good bye" or trusting in God's promptings when it doesn't make any sense. We wanted more than anything to control the situation and us become their savior. God made one thing very clear to us in our prayers, "I [God] am their Father". It was a assertive and full of love statement showcasing that He is in control, and as a Father to them, He has the best plans and intentions for them.
We are forever changed because we said "yes" to those sweet kiddos. God's love for us seems so much bigger now when I consider how much we loved those kiddos, and yet His love is even greater than that. With heavy yet warm hearts, we know they are in God's loving hands with a wonderful foster family and will be taken care of in the best ways possible.
— from honorary Uncle Cam and Aunt Hannah, we love you two