Dear Single Person,
On this Father’s Day, I would like to share my self-reflection, which hopefully resonates in other single people’s lives. If you are reading this, you know the daily routine. You wake up every morning, get ready for work, have a fulfilling day in the office, go out to a restaurant for dinner, and then come home to your comfortable couch. Your outside appearance reveals a contagious smile full of laughter, joy, sense of humor, and a radiant personality. You are a great person to be around. All your friend’s children view you as an amazing Aunt or Uncle. You are the one they can depend on when they get in trouble and need someone to talk gracefully to their parents. You are there for the holidays, birthdays, graduations, and even days when there is no special occasion. You are the single person of the year living your life singing “Hakuna Matata”, no worries for me. You have a roof over your head with tons of love and time to share with family and friends. On some weekends, you even test out the waters of parenthood while giving your friends a break and offering to watch their kiddos. The weekend power-packed with fun activities, cooking, and yes, sometimes you are a referee when the siblings argue. At the end of the weekend, the children go back home, and you are back to your amazing single life, right? Some people wish they had your carefree life.
The reality is you often think, “Where in the world did the time go?” Over the years, you watch your friend’s children lose their first tooth, ride their bikes with no training wheels, and eventually receive their driver’s license. Deep down inside, you wish you had become a parent. Maybe marriage wasn’t in your path, or possibly you had a marriage not survive. Sometimes you feel you are not worthy of being a parent since you don’t have a spouse. If this doesn’t sound familiar, well, it does to me!
I am a single male who was once married. Deep down inside, I yearned to become a dad. Going back down the aisle and then trying to change diapers in my 40’s, is NOT for me! However, I do commend those who desire that path, and I hope your dreams come true. But since that is not my desire, does that mean I have no hope of becoming a dad? Not so!
There are an estimated 153 million orphans and foster children worldwide. Approximately 14 million age out (never find a forever family), and only about 250,000 are adopted. What is missing from this picture? I am, and so are you! This year I chose to become a host dad with the Kidsave Summer/Winter Miracles program. It is an amazing opportunity for “waiting children” from Colombia to visit the U.S. for a dynamic, educational, and cultural enriching experience. Since many of the children in the program are over ten years old, they have far less of a chance of finding a forever family since most families desire to adopt infants or toddlers. Do these children not deserve a loving home? Don’t all children matter? One adopted parent from Kidsave said, “Kids don’t need a second chance; they need a first.” Why not be that single person to give them their first chance?
I am coming close to completing my home study that will certify me to adopt from Colombia. I was also recently matched to be a host dad to siblings this December. I am aware that we are in a pandemic, but that has not stopped my desire to become a dad. I must advocate for my future children and not give up hope. Wearing a mask in public, yet having a loving home forever, is far better than letting these children age out of the system. Many of these children won’t even have the chance to finish school if they don’t find a family who will adopt them. They need you and me.
Today, I want to reach out to all single men and women waiting for the “perfect time” to host or adopt a child. Today is a perfect time. Why not follow your passion and allow your dreams to come true of becoming a parent? I must be honest; International adoption is not cheap. The good news is that there are plenty of grants and other financial assistance available to help offset the adoption costs. But if you really want to become a parent, does the cost matter? A child’s life is priceless.