In February, 2016, my husband and I flew to Colombia to adopt a sibling group of 3. It was not the sibling group we originally imagined 6 years ago when we began the process of adoption 2 siblings 0-4. As the wait continued to get longer and longer in Colombia, we talked about whether we would be willing to change our preferences and adopt a larger sibling group with 3 children up to age 10. After a lot of thought and discussion, we decided to make this change. We were nervous about our decision but when we got our referral and we talked some more, it just felt right.
We were in Colombia for a month and brought home Valentina, age 9, Bradimir, age 6, and Lorena, 18 months. It has not been an easy year, but as we come together as a family, I can see how much we have changed and grown in the past year. Both Valentina and Bradimir initially struggled in school. However, after some English tutoring over the summer, they started school in the fall acting like traditional ELL students. In fact, their ELL teacher nominated Valentina and Bradimir for a Hope award in courage. They were selected to receive the award together because of the courage they have shown over the past year. We are so proud of them.
Lorena also continues to bring us joy everyday with her stubbornness and silliness. She was not walking at 18 months when we arrived in Colombia. She was taking her first steps with us within a week. When we arrived home and had our first doctor visit, she was behind for her age. She has been in daycare and by her 2 year old visit she had caught up.
If we have learned anything from this process it’s that kids are resilient. We still have struggles but I am so glad we decided to open our hearts to considering a larger sibling group.