Adopting Children During COVID-19
Adoption can already be complicated but imagine adopting children during COVID-19. The system is flooded with children who just need a support system and one of the things that the foster care system is in dire need of is loving parents. Callie Ballie and her husband took the step of becoming foster parents after realizing they wanted to help families in need. In 2014 they began classes and eventually became licensed.
A Good Start
Their journey began with respite care. They temporarily cared for 11 children when their guardians couldn’t. Some of their placements only lasted one night and others lasted as long as 3 months. Until they received Lai and Jordyn for a long term placement.
Reevaluating Adopting Children
The very first time the couple met Lai and Jordyn the social worker asked if they would be willing to do an adoptive placement. Although it was a routine question it still caught them off guard because up until then they hadn’t really thought about adoption. They unknowingly said yes to starting their future family.
As with most foster cases, reunification had priority over any other option. For the first few years, the families worked together to try to find a solution. The Ballie’s just wanted the best for the children and fought for their safety. Unfortunately, the courts eventually decided that the children could not return with their bio parents, and adoption should be pursued by the couple.
Officially Becoming a Forever Family
After 5 long years of being in the foster care system, the children officially became a part of the family! Although, Callie and her husband knew from day 1 that those were their kids and welcomed them with open arms.
Callie shares her experience with the encouragement garnered by the foster community. There are so many people maneuvering the system along with you that you never feel alone. So many people supported them and followed their journey that they had the unique opportunity of demonstrating the bonds and trust created through foster care. They even inspired others to start their foster journey!
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Callie and her family were unable to go to court in-person. Luckily, their case was scheduled pre-outbreak and their judge was able to move their adoption forward via a Zoom call.
Callie’s advice to others is to say yes and take it one step at a time. It can be scary not knowing what the outcome will be but helping vulnerable children and families is worth it. You can’t focus on the possibility of being hurt because you just have to make the most of each day and be there for the children when they most need you.
In conclusion, we would like to thank Callie Ballie and her family for sharing how their journey of adopting children during COVID-19. For those in the process of adoption, Foster Love - Together We Rise offers free foster care adoption photography. Check it out here.