My son TJ was adopted when he was 2. He had lived in the orphanage his entire life, and so he had never known what it was like to have a mom or dad to love him until the day he was placed in my arms a little more than a year ago. I wondered how long it would take for him to learn his place in our home and how long it would take for him to understand that we were now a FAMILY and that he was our little boy.
TJ loves animals, and he loves collecting miniature plastic ones from the zoo or from toy stores. One day when we were out shopping together, he kept trying to place two zebras into the shopping cart, and I kept insisting that we would only buy one. TJ became so upset when I put the other one back, and cried all the way out of the store, trying desperately to tell me why he needed both, but since he only had a few words in his vocabulary at that time, it wasn’t working. I kept assuring him that he only needed one, and he kept stretching out his arms and pointing to the back of the store hoping for the other.
Every time we would go into another store with animals, he always would try to buy two. Mom (being thrifty) would always say “we only need one panda”, or “TJ, you should be happy with one cow”.
It wasn’t until his language began to take off that I FINALLY understood the depth of TJ’s desire to always have two animals. One day he was carefully searching through his bucket of animals until he found two lions. He put one up on the table first and said “baby” and then with great care he put up the second, right next to the first, and earnestly said, “MOM”. He dug some more into his bucket and managed to find two elephants and once more he placed the first one on the table and said “baby” and then gently sat the larger one down near the first while saying to himself with great relief, “MOM”.
TJ had learned so quickly that babies need moms. And that was the source of his distress when I would only allow him to buy one animal. He had been trying to tell me even at age two that his baby zebra needed a mommy. How could I not have seen that? Now we always buy our animals in families. Because TJ is so concerned that everyone needs a parent to take care of them.
Right now on our website we have some beautiful children who are in need of foster care sponsorship so that they, too, can have a parent to love them each and every day. There is a gorgeous little boy named Luke, who is the same age that TJ was at adoption, just two years old. His Chinese name means “brave” and he certainly was that when he traveled all the way to Shanghai last year for open heart surgery. We know that Luke will grow and thrive with his own mama and baba. He just needs someone to step forward to give him that chance.
If you know of anyone wanting to sponsor a child for foster care, please have them visit our webpage at http://www.lovewithoutboundaries.com/SponsorFosterCare.php
TJ learned the importance of family so quickly after he joined our home. What a wonderful gift it is to let children living as orphans learn it as well. Thank you to EVERYONE who supports foster care. You are truly giving the gift of love.