Husband, and father to 5 girls (20, 18, 15, 4, 2) and 1 boy (decd.).
How it started
It was this month (Nov. 19) thirty-eight years ago that my dad adopted me. Since then, he became my father, my friend, and my Best Man at my wedding. This is not a common story anymore these days. I count myself lucky. Here is the basic story how this started.
My mother married her high school sweetheart. He was a year ahead of her in school and became a Marine right out of school. When my mom graduated, they married soon after. Then about a year later I was born.
It didn’t take long for mom to realize that Terry (my biological father), was just not in the place to be a dad or husband, so she decided she needed to divorce him and move home.
In order to provide for both of us, mom ended up working three jobs at a time. One of those was as an Activities Director at a Nursing Home that Jim ran, as the Administrator. They didn’t get along. One day, Jim told his assistant that today was the day he was going to fire her. But before he could, she came in and quit, and she told him her assistant would be her replacement. Jim was speechless, and little bothered by what had just happened.
Mom worked for another Nursing Home and her boss there also knew Jim. He convinced the both of them to go on a double date with him and his wife. They agreed. By the end of the year, they were married. At the time of their wedding,I was 2 ½ years old.
Terry, on the other hand, was still not in a good place and was drinking a lot. In fact, one Christmas when he was scheduled to come pick me up for his visitation, he never showed up. We eventually found out it was because he had put his car in a nearby river. That was the last time he was allowed to have me without them around. He also was not paying his child support. So, my mom and Jim decided to ask Terry if Jim could adopt me. After demanding full back pay of child support, Terry agreed to sign off on the adoption.
How I became a dad
I have always admired and wanted to help single moms, because that was part of my life story, being a baby of a single mom. And I grew up respecting men who marry single moms and eventually adopt her kids. Again, because that was my story.
Ironically, my younger brother ended up following in dad’s footsteps and marrying a single mom. He didn’t get to adopt her daughter, but did help raise her for a few years before she moved out.
So, where does my story go? Well, I already told you I got married, since my dad was my Best Man. The woman I married, well, you guessed it, was a single mom with two girls. We went to school together, but lost contact for 24 years before she found me on eHarmony. Two months after we meet, I asked her to marry me. Seven months later we had our wedding.
And yes, I have been able to adopt. I was able to adopt only one of her girls, since the other girl’s father was still involved in her life, and she still wanted that connection. We also have two girls together and earlier this year we had a son, who passed 42 days after birth, but that is another story for another time.
Adoption is a blessing
I have heard men complain about having to raise another man’s child. It is very disturbing to me when a man feels the need to complain about being a dad, and getting the chance to have a relationship with his wife’s kids. How small minded do you have to be? How self-absorbed does a man have to be, to have this kind of selfish attitude? What does his wife think about him? What do the kids think about him?
No, I count it a great blessing. A blessing that I get to be the man who teaches this kid how to be a better person. How to be an influence on the world, or at least the small community around them. I am a believer in God, and I believe that God puts us in places like this, to be a positive influence on others. He has the power to make anything happen, yet He chooses to use us. He gives us the chance to be a part of His bigger plan.
Adoptions are like tatoos
Are we done having kids? I don’t know, God hasn’t told us that yet. And even if we are, that doesn’t mean the door is closed. We have talked about adopting. The only thing really holding us back, is the financial commitment of the process. Adoption is not a requirement; it is an opportunity. An opportunity to give a better life to one more kid. My life was changed through adoption, and so far, I have been able to change a life through adoption, as well. If you are thinking about it, don’t think anymore, just adopt.
Add to your family with adoption. Add to a child’s life. Add to the joy in your life by adopting a child. Adoptions are like tattoos, they are permanent and the first one is hard, but once you do it, you’ll want more. Thanks for reading and remember, just adopt.
Adoption changed my life
December 27, 1975 was the day my life changed for the better. It wasn't official until my name changed on November 19, 1981, the day my adoption was finalized.
Will you change a life?
© 2019 Aaron L Huddart