Our God-child O recently came to visit us. He lives in Florida, across the country from us. Well, let me back up.
If you’ve read about our Two Little Miracles you already know about O.
Hubby and I were still researching different adoption options when my sister called one night and asked if he could come live with us. His mom was struggling with addictions and wasn’t able to care for him. There was the possibility that we would be able to adopt him but we would just have to wait and see.
Here he is, in 2005, having just turned 1.
He lived with us full time while his mom when through treatment and then moved 800 miles away to a half way house. We developed a close relationship with O’s grandparents who were in favor of us caring for him. He was just as much a part of our family as any child would be. We considered him our son. He called us “mommy missy” and “daddy pat”. We loved him so much and prayed and prayed that we would be able to adopt him.
His mom continued to do well though. She was on the road to recovery and almost exactly one year after O came to live with us she was finally able to make a decision that she wanted O back. Although part of us wanted to fight to keep him, we knew that he belonged with her.
Two days after his 2nd birthday we drove O 800 miles to where his mom lived. It was a wonderful trip but it was also the hardest thing we had to endure. We brought with us every single toy. Every single piece of clothing. We felt he deserved to have everything with him that he had at our home.
We pulled up into the driveway of O’s mom and immediately Hubby started crying. We still had to unload our Jeep that was packed full. We couldn’t start crying already. O hadn’t seen his mom in over six months and so you can imagine his confusion. I bring him into the house and show him around. Show him his bed and all his toys. We put things away. By this time Hubby was crying uncontrollably and said we needed to leave. We weren’t even able to say goodbye to O because he would have been too upset. He was comfortable with his mom and so we snuck out. I regret that now. I wish we would have said goodbye.
We drove away, sobbing, and the first thing Hubby said was, “We need to call Pastor Bill”. This was such a blessing to me because at this time Hubby had still been struggling in his faith. We called Pastor Bill and he prayed with us and then we checked into a hotel to try to get some sleep. Of course we were unsuccessful. We cried and tossed and turned all night long.
We still hadn’t decided if we would go back the next morning. We called when we woke up and O was doing well. We told his mom a few things that we thought she should know. Likes and dislikes. Although I’m pretty sure I wrote about a ten page report detailing all this information. We decided it would be too difficult to go back and so we began our long journey home. Without our boy O.
God brought tremendous blessing through our experience though. Eventually O and his mom moved to Florida where O’s grandparents had moved. They still had family in our hometown and came to visit at least twice a year. And each time O was able to spend time with us. We talked to him on the phone often. We even planned a family vacation to Florida a few years ago and spent three days with them.
O’s mom and grandparents have been wonderful in allowing us to stay a part of O’s life. They show him our pictures and talk about us often. We are so thankful for this.
A few weeks ago O and his grandparents came for another visit. Unfortunately we only had a few hours to spend with him but it was still a blessing. For the first few minutes O is timid and not sure what to do or say. But then he warms up to us. Especially Hubby. They have a very special bond.
Here they are playing a game. They played Sorry, Chutes and Ladders and Mouse Trap. I took pictures and tried to keep Belle and Pip in line.
Me, O and Belle
Belle and O. Belle was completely in love. She kept starting at O and would pat his head. It was so sweet.
The reason this post is titled “Sunshine” is because that was our nickname for O. We would sing “You are my sunshine” to him and he was a ray of sunshine in our life. Even though it was difficult we were blessed beyond measure to be able to care for him.
And we’re so thankful for our Sunshine!