Adoption of the Month - April 2014
Kim came from a family of ten children and I came from a family of five. Our first daughter was born on Halloween 1979; our second daughter was born at home on Thanksgiving Day 1980. Our third daughter was born at home as well on Father’s Day 1982. We had a son born in August of 1985 and finally our fifth child, a wonderful daughter, born in 1988.
In 2000 we began doing Foster Care in the state of Idaho. We fostered close to twenty children in Idaho and adopted one who had lived with us for several years; he is now 25 years-old. In 2006 we moved to Washington State. After a couple months in Washington the State of Idaho contacted me at work regarding a special needs child in Pocatello that required circumstances that they felt only we could provide. After getting licensed in Washington and getting the required interstate compacts together we were able to have placement of a beautiful 8-year-old girl. She was the first child that Mark helped us adopt in August the following year.
While the interstate compacts were being finalized we were blessed to have placed in our care a sibling group of a 4-year-old boy and six-year-old girl. It took a couple of years but finally they were available for adoption and with Mark’s help in 2009 we proudly made their addition to our family official. At the time we had a 4 week old baby girl placed in our care and happily in November of 2012, Mark help make her an official part of our family and we couldn’t be happier.
In 2011 a young girl who we had provided respite care in the past became legally free and needed a permanent adoptive home. Although she was termed difficult she was placed with us. Her problems were and to a degree still are a little difficult to work with, due to the life she lived prior to being placed in foster care. But with the help of Mr. Iverson we made it official and adopted her on the last day of the year 2012. We have had several foster children of all ages bless our home and continue to welcome young ones who need a place to take a deep breath and try to adjust to their unstable circumstance.
The most important part of the adoption process is, knowing yourself well enough to make the decision based on who you truly are, not on the emotional wave of excitement that becoming a new parent brings. Those waves will soon dissipate and life begins again. I have found that unerringly whether the children are biological, adopted or foster children they walk on your feet when young and your hearts as they grow older.
When we first began the adoption process initially we sought out a local attorney and because of their lack of experience the whole affair turned into a nightmare. Working with Mark was great and kind of mindless for us. His firm kept us up to date on where things were at, we showed up at his office one time to sign the needed documents and then we showed up at court for the judge to finalize so it was a smooth and stress free endeavor for us. We would highly recommend Mark for anyone who wants a positive adoption process.
Our life is one of constant activity, which helps us feel younger and happier. We currently have 11 children, 9 that are legally ours, and two that should be ours within a year or so (so Mark can get ready for another round). We also have 11 grandchildren from our first round of children, we have foster children that have kept in touch and basically have our entire life surrounded by loving individuals. We have always done open adoptions which allows the children who wish to the opportunity to keep any healthy connection from their past and carry these onto the future. Most of the children do have appropriate biological relatives that encourage and foster a unity within the cornucopia of what we fondly and proudly call “our family.”