Saturday, January 16, 2010

Workshop

Today's workshop at the University of Chicago was AMAZING! I was humbled and blessed to be able to be a part of such a wonderful partnering between professionals at U of C, possible or future adoptive parents, and current adoptive parents.

We were blessed to have professionals from the International adoption clinic, HIV practitioners, Pediatric Neurologists, Neuropsychologists, social workers, etc. There were four families who together are adopting 7 of the girls on Reeces Rainbow from the Ukraine who are HIV+. One of these had driven in from OHIO! It was great to be one of the few parents present who was currently parenting a child with HIV, to be able to share the everyday life experiences with these wonderful people. The ease of parenting a child with HIV, the realization that still many today, including many pediatric physicians, are in need of correct information when it comes to the spread of HIV, the fact that for many of us, our HIV+ children are actually our healthiest in our home! :) How many of us decide to NOT keep HIV a secret, in order to help alleviate the stigma, in order to help educate others. There is a lot to take into consideration when venturing into adoption, and HIV doesn't have to be a negative aspect at all.

I am so completely not someone who is comfortable speaking in front of peers, especially peers I don't know. Give me a room of students, I'm good. But a room of adults, I practically hyperventilate! My hands turn ice cold, and my train of thought is NIL. I shared a few thoughts today, but had more on my mind I would have liked to have shared. I need God to be able to step in and use me in these times, I am not a good speaker! :)

But, speaking aside, I was in awe of God's work today. In all that those at U of C have done, and would like to plan for the future. Project Hopeful, Carolyn, are wonderful advocates for HIV adoption! This is something that is needed country-wide. It sounds like these workshops may be made into webinars at some point to get this wonderful information out to anyone around the country, possibly even the world, who would be interested. Praise God! :)

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About Me

I am a single mom to four amazing kids; each of whom just happen to have been adopted. The first three were adopted through foster care, and we just completed an international adoption from Haiti. Our family has grown through adoption and I am all the more blessed to know each of my children. I worship a mighty God, teach Special Ed, love bargains, and am inspired by Pinterest... come along with us for the ride!


Olivia - 14

Olivia - 14

Braeden - 11

Braeden - 11

Liam - 9

Liam - 9

Macy - 5

Macy - 5

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What you should know about HIV

-HIV can NOT be spread through casual/household contact. HIV is not spread through hugging, kissing, shaking hands, sharing toys, sneezing, coughing, sharing food, sharing drinks, bathing, swimming or any other casual way. It has been proven that HIV and AIDS can only be spread through sexual contact, birth, breastfeeding and blood to blood contact (such as sharing needles). - HIV is now considered a chronic but manageable disease. With treatment, people who are HIV+ can live indefinitely without developing AIDS and can live long and full lives. - People who are HIV+ deserve to be treated with love, respect, support and acceptance as all people do. Additional information on transmission of HIV can be found on the Center for Disease Control website: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/resources

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Orphan Crisis

• 147 million orphans in the world
• 50 million orphans in Africa 
• Every 14 seconds a child is orphaned by AIDS
• 16,000,000 have been orphaned by AIDS
• Every week, AIDS claims as many lives as American fatalities in the Vietnam War
• 854 million people do not have enough to eat
• Malnutrition is associated with the deaths of 5 million children under the age of five
• Every 2 seconds an orphan dies from malnutrition


Hence the title of my blog

Little Did I Know

Little did I know that the road would be so rocky
Little did I know that the trip would take so long
Little did I know that my heart could hurt so much
Little did I know that God is never wrong

Little did I know that love could be so powerful
Little did I know that a dream so far could go
Little did I know that God would place the right ones
Little did I know that my heart, so large, could grow

Little did I know that a dream has it’s own timing
Little did I know that this day would finally come
Little did I know that four souls would be sent to guide me
Little did I know that they would choose to call me mom

But God knew all along and He had a plan to follow
God knew all along that my dream would soon come true
God knew all along that we five should be together
God knew all along that I’d share it all with you