Yolie's World

Monday, November 21, 2005

Exciting Weekend

This weekend was very exciting for me. I was blessed to serve on an adoption panel with Father George Clements, Founder & CEO of One Church, One Child (in addition to a bunch of other programs). Just to get him speak would have been enough for me, as he is an inspiration to so many in the adoption field. Not only did I get to hear him speak, I was privileged to be on the same panel with him, myself speaking to the same captive audience he was. I felt so honored. After the panel, Father Clements took some time to talk with me and hug me. He took a picture with my son CJ in his arms, and I cannot wait to show it to CJ when he is older and explain to him the awesome man he met when he was only five months old. Father Clements has himself adopted four boys. He was the first priest to adopt a child. Because of his vision and determination to find homes for waiting children, over 170,000 kids have found adoptive homes. What a legacy. Father Clements is not only concerned with adoption, though. He has a passion for the human race. It was so cool to meet a man doesn't say "oh, that's awful. Someone should do something about that." Instead, he says "oh, that's awful. I'll do something about it." Again, it was so awesome to serve on the same panel. As the only adoptee on the panel, I hope I brought a little bit of understanding to adoptive parents about what it's like for the children. As if Saturday wasn't exciting enough, I received a text message from a friend Sunday after church telling me my article was good. Soon after, my mom called and said the article I wrote last week had been published. Chuck, CJ and I ran to the gas station and got a copy of the paper. Sure enough, there it was. I really thought I'd get a small corner of the paper, somewhere where nobody would see it. Instead, I was surprised to see my article in a prominent place, with a pretty big heading. While I can't help but be proud of myself for being in the paper (kind of like a kid who got an "A" in something), I am praying that just one person will read it and decide to make a difference in the life of a waiting child.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


This is something I just wrote that may potentially be put in our local newspaper for National Adoption Month.

Adoption in today’s world holds many different experiences for many different types of children. While the typical adoption of a newborn baby is still the most widely thought-of type of adoption, there are many other types that need to be recognized in order to find homes for waiting children. “Special Needs Adoption” is one example. Through my personal experience as an adopted child, I have been able to accomplish many things in life. I was adopted at the age of eleven. Before that, I had spent some time in foster care while parental rights were terminated on my biological mother. My past was not pretty and it made me a “hard to place” child, especially when you threw in the fact that I had two younger brothers who needed to be placed with me. When prospective adoptive parents think about their perfect adopted child, they usually do not picture a sibling group of three kids, none of them even close to babies or toddlers, who are dealing with issues stemming from years of abuse and neglect. Regardless, I needed a home, and I needed someone to go out on a limb and offer me that home. But, I didn’t need just anybody. I needed someone who was committed, someone who could understand that I was a wounded spirit who needed time to heal. This is not an easy task. It is a lifelong commitment to loving, nurturing, protecting and understanding a child who you have just met. I needed a parent. As a pre-teen I was beginning a hard time in my life and I had nobody to help me understand it. I was dealing with issues surrounding grief and loss and I had nobody to talk to about them. For years, I had been the caretaker to my younger brothers, having lost any sense of a normal childhood and I needed someone to take over that role so that I could begin to be a child. At the same time, I was dealing with a profound sadness over the loss of my biological family, because even though it was abusive and neglectful, it was the only family I knew. All this, wrapped into an eleven year old girl. I was not the poster child for adoption. But, maybe I should have been. There are so many children out there right now just like me. Waiting for someone to step up to the plate and bat for them. Older children do bring their own special needs with them into an adoptive home, but they can also bring lots of joy and happiness. Many people mistakenly believe that an older child could never bond with them, since they have so many memories of their biological family. I firmly disagree. I could not be more bonded to my adoptive mother if she had birthed me. Blood lines do not dictate our love for each other, we choose to love one another and that’s so special. Being adopted has meant the world to me. It means that my mother chose me as her own. If only more people were willing to do the same for all the waiting children.

Special Needs Adoption encompasses a wide range of children. I was considered special needs because I was eleven years old, Hispanic and part of a sibling group. Many other children fall into this category because they are older than eight (Caucasian children), older than one (African-American children), have emotional, physical or other needs, and/or are part of a sibling group. If you are interested in learning more about Special Needs Adoption, please visit All God’s Children, Inc.’s website at www.agcadoption.org or call 706-316-2421. To see a photolisting of waiting children in Georgia visit www.myturnnow.com. As an adoptee I urge everyone to search their hearts and see if this is something you feel called to do. Being a parent is the most important job one could ever have.

Monday, November 14, 2005


Chuck is a proud Daddy! He must have taken thirty shots of CJ while I was taking a shower. So cute!

Long Week

It's been a heck of a time around here since last Monday. So much has gone on that it would be hard to remember it all. If you read my mom's blog you alredy know that Deysi, Saray and Marcela's birth mother passed away. It was one of the saddest nights we've had in our family. Deysi, Saray and Marcela were my mom's first sibling group, adopted from Honduras. Their adoption pretty much started my mom down the path to our large family now. It was very difficult to watch them so broken over Mama Daisy's death. At the same time, it was uplifting to see how our family rose to the occasion and comforted, held, loved and cared for them during this time. Joey, who is one of mom's most difficult kids, sat down on the sofa with his arms around Marcela and tears streaming down his face. The truth is, I'm not even sure he knew the name Mama Daisy until that night, but he did know that his sisters were hurting and that's all that mattered. I spent pretty much all day every day last week at mom's house, just trying to find the right thing to say to my sisters. Of course, there is no right thing, so instead I just sat with them, sometimes just letting them cry and sometimes laughing as we reminisced on the good old days when we were all teenagers (I heard that snort, mother). Again, it was a time for family and I think we all stepped up to the plate.

In addition to that (or maybe because of that tough week), CJ and I have been fighting a terrible bug. CJ has been to the Dr. twice and he woke up this morning still in bad shape. Thank God I'm feeling a little better, as it's been tough to take care of him while I'm sick. My sweet husband has really helped out with him (as he always does). It seems that being sick is in the air right now, as Saray's kids were sick and poor Odd Toddler Ray was hospitalized. Mom said Tabby's got some sort of something around her mouth/face and I'm conviced it's from something she stuck in her mouth. Last time I babysat her she came up to me and stuck her tongue out to show me that she had eaten a red colored pencil. Hey, at least she's not a picky eater.

With the death of Mama Dasiy, I hve spent a lot of time thinking about my own birth family. Deysi, Saray and Marcela were blessed to have two mothers who loved them unconditionally. They, therefore, reacted as expected with Mama Daisy's passing. They loved her and she loved them and it was probably one of the hardest things they will ever have to go through. The question I have been asking myself is "what will that look like for me?" I cannot even begin to imagine what I would feel if my birth mother passed away. There's still so much left unsaid and so many questions I know I'll never get answered. The biggest, "WHY??" has no answer and I remain committed to my decision not to have contact with her, but still, it makes you think. Really, I'm thinking more about my birth sister. If something happened to her I'd be devastated, and yet, in order for me to continue to move forward in my life (in positive ways) I feel that I have to let go. This is where I have the hardest time with forgiveness. Because of my birth mom, so many people have been hurt and must make heartwrenching decisions just to lead a stable life. She has no idea how much damage and destruction she left in her path. I constantly question my decisions regarding my birth sister because there is simply no easy answer. And yet, she goes about her life continuing to hurt and cause pain. It makes me very angry. On to other things now...

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Family Ties

It's 7:45pm and I am getting ready to go to bed. I am totally exhausted after a week of CJ reverting back to his newborn days when he has to eat every one and a half to two hours the entire night. Since he usually takes a morning nap, I would usually nap with him in this case, but my sisters have been going through a very difficult situation with their mom in Honduras so I have been spending all day at Mom's house with them, just trying to be supportive and show them how much I love them. Mom often says that emotional exhaustion is worse than actual physical exhaustion, and right now I have both. I'm going on very little real sleep and some pretty heavy emotional stuff with my sisters, Deysi, Saray and Marcela. I cannot imagine, though, the extent of their exhaustion, since it is their mother that is about to undergo a serious and difficult surgery thousands of miles away. My emotions are for their sake. I hate to see them going through such a hard time and to see the pain in their faces makes me want to cry myself. Mom said in her blog that times like this really help us to re-learn the meaning of family. She's right. Many people ask if we remain close after we grow up (as if adoption bonds terminate at age eighteen). I think that if people could see us in a situation like this they would see the utter love we have for one another. No, it's not my biological mother who had a stroke, but it is my sisters' mother, and that's enough for me to drop what I'm doing and make sure they know I'm here for them. Yes, we stay close even though we're grown up. We are a family and family ties are forever binding, through good and bad, happy and sad.

Thursday, November 03, 2005


CJ had his four month shots yesterday and they did not sit well with him. Poor baby spent most of the day and all of the night moaning in my arms feeling pitiful. Every four hours I dosed him up with Infant's Tylenol but come that third hour before the next dose his temperature was high and he was feeling really crappy. It was hard for me to see him so miserable, which explains why I just held him all night, even when he did doze off (usually, I would roll him off of my stomach right next to me in bed). I sensed he just needed me to be there, where he could hear my heartbeat, not to mention the backrub I gave him all night. He woke up this morning not feelign well again. Lena was able to get about two smiles out of him before he was back to moaning and groaning in my arms. Poor baby. It's times like this that I tend to think about my own childhood and get sad. I know I had my vaccines (only because I've seen the shot record), but what are the chances that I was even given Tylenol for a fever afterwards? I'll never know the answers to such questions, or perhaps, I do know the answers and that's where the sadness comes from. I don't feel sorry for myself, but in a weird, almost out of body way, I grieve the loss of that little girl's childhood. I mourn for the little girl inside of me who just wanted to be loved. That's all I wanted. Fortunately, I have found ways to grieve the loss of that little, innocent girl's childhood in appropriate ways. Many of my siblings still have not acquired those skills, instead lashing out and acting out has become the only way they know how to relieve the pressure that builds up inside of them from so much sadness. Ultimately, the sadness is what is behind it all. It may look like anger, rebellion, frustration or other things but it's just that we're so darn sad. Wouldn't you be?