From Three Years to Forever: An Adoption Story
Martin and Laura come from large families and are the first ones [on both sides of the family] to adopt a child from foster care. After experiencing fertility issues, Laura was ready to explore adoption. Martin was hesitant. The couple started their foster to adopt journey in 2018 but realized during the approval process they were not ready to move forward. Struggles like this are common among couples looking to adopt. Different people reach their decision to adopt at different times. For Martin, his emotional readiness came in May 2019. After almost a year of completing the Resource Family Approval requirements, Martin and Laura received their approval. A week later, their future son came into their lives.
From left to right: Laura, Martin Jr. and Martin Sr.
Laura: We were moved by the love of God. The decision wasn’t just about not having biological children – it was about acting in love. We wanted to provide a loving home for a child in need. What we experienced was totally unexpected. We opened our home to a child, and he opened his whole heart and life to us. He gave us this love that we never knew before.
Martin: We didn’t want to bring a child into our home to fill a void. We decided to adopt because we wanted to share our love and values with someone. The love God gives is what moved me to share that same love with a child.
How did this decision affect those around you and how important was the support of others throughout your journey?
L: No one in our family had adopted but we have the support of our family, namely my mother, mother-inlaw,
sisters and sisters-in-law. I can go to them when I have questions. We also had a lot of support from the
foster family agency’s case manager, the County social worker [County of Orange Social Services Agency] and our support group. We are grateful for the Adoption Assistance Program [a monthly stipend and medical coverage for children adopted from foster care]. We can pay for Montessori school because of this program. If we adopted through a private adoption agency, we wouldn’t have had this level of support.
M: Adoption was not part of our family history, but family and friends were ready to receive our son. He brings so much joy to all our family and friends. We never felt alone. Someone was by our side 24/7. As Laura said, whenever we had questions, we always received answers. Support is everywhere. We have both emotional and financial support which is so helpful. Many people don’t know just how much support is available to those who adopt from foster care.
What are your thoughts on maintaining birth family connections?
L: We have a post-adoption agreement with some of the birth family and we send an annual update to let them know how our son is doing. Martin and I know we want to maintain that connection. When our son is older, we will allow him to decide what kind of contact he wants, if any.
What advice would you give to someone thinking about adoption from foster care?
L: Stop thinking about it. Just do it. It’s an amazing experience. Except for my husband, I love my son more than anyone in my life. You become even more emotionally attached with each passing second. I ask myself why didn’t I do this five years ago? You don’t want to regret delaying true happiness. Adoption is giving birth from your heart.
M: Just open your heart and you will see the reward. There is no reason why people who are thinking about adopting from foster care can’t do it. The support is there. It’s a win win. When we talk about adoption, we say we gave birth from our hearts. Our son was born from our hearts.
On August 27, 2021, the adoption was finalized. Martin and Laura are excited to share life’s adventures with their son. They are especially looking forward to experiencing their love of travel through their son’s eyes. A trip to their favorite place, Cancun, is already planned.
To learn more about adoption from foster care, click here or call (888) 871-5437.