ADOPTING FOUR CHILDREN FROM FOSTER CARE [S4E13]
In this episode of ADOPTION NOW:
Lori Tapparo shares her foster care adoption story.
Lori Tapparo and her husband Kenny tried for 16 years to have biological children before they adopted. Lori shares the ups and downs of their journey and what it is like to adopt biological siblings. She also talks about what she did when her son Jeremiah was unexpectedly reunified with his birth mother.
And although this story is full of struggles and moments of heartbreak, it ends in a very positive way.
To start, host April Fallon asks Lori why she and her husband chose adoption.
“My Husband and I tried to have children for about 16 years, and I ended up having to have an emergency hysterectomy…through a mutual friend we heard about Foster to Adopt, so we really just felt like God led us in that direction.”
Lori says that they met with a Child Protection Agency first. The CPA became a catalyst for connecting to the state shortly after. When asked by April how long they waited before they got a placement, Lori states it was about six months.
So, after sixteen years, Lori and Kenny’s wait was finally over. They were notified of the placement of a little girl. They picked her up from the hospital, but were soon presented with devastating news: there had been a mistake and the child should have never left the hospital.
April wondered how hard this experience was, and Lori expressed that it was heartbreaking. She had wanted children since she was a little girl and the sudden loss was not easy to deal with.
Lori and her husband Kenny were devastated. But they soon learned that there is always risk involved and that God presents opportunity where He sees fit.
Armed with this insight, Lori and Kenny were nervous when another call came through in December. When asked by April if they were scared about saying yes to another baby, Lori says they weren’t really afraid, just more open to being disappointed again.
So, in December, Lori received the call about a boy who had been placed. He had jaundice and was only 2 days old, but Lori and Kenny immediately said yes! April asked her why the birth mother had placed the child, and Lori states that the mother didn’t have the means to raise him.
April says that hearing Lori’s story reminds her of her first adoption experience: how you walk in and there’s emotional turmoil and chaos, and at the same time you are grieving for the birth mother. Apil reminds listeners that learning to embrace the brokenness is so important.
Lori talks about bringing home baby Jeremiah, and this is what she had to say:
“He was absolutely a beautiful child. I mean like the prettiest baby I had ever seen…he was very special right from the beginning.”
So, they bonded with this beautiful baby, welcome him into their family for a year, and then they get a call from the state–the very last call any adoptive parents want to receive. The state said that at that point in time they believed reunification with the mother was the best course of action for Jeremiah.
And so, almost a year to the date that they first took Jeremiah home, Lori and Kenny were forced to give this little baby back to his birth mother in an environment that was unfamiliar to him and so different then what he knew.
After dropping Jeremiah off, Lori cried and prayed to God. And amidst her emotional devastation, God answered back: He told Lori that she could trust in His plan. In her heart, Lori then knew that she would get Jeremiah back.
Before they returned Jeremiah back to his birth mother, Lori and Kenny had taken in another boy named Eli. Originally the plan was to provide a home for two months and he was going to be placed with another set of adoptive parents. That plan soon changed.
Eli attached immediately with Lori and Kenny. The other adoptive family came for a visit and it was clear they were not a good fit to become his parents. Lori and Kenny were thrilled to step into that role. There was more to the story though: Eli had a nine-year-old sister. Soon she was a part of the family as well!
It was a few months after welcoming in Eli and his sister Bella that they had to return Jeremiah to his birth mother. After waiting for quite some time without hearing anything about him, Lori decided to call and check up on Jeremiah. After learning that Jeremiah was suffering where he was living, a caseworker called.
After checking in, Lori received a call from the caseworker with the news that Jeremiah’s mom wanted to return Jeremiah back to them! On top of that, there was more to the story, she had given birth to another baby.
Lori says that at this point God completely filled her need for children and her desire to have a large family. She trusted in him and he provided, just like he said he would. And to this day, they are completely happy and content as a family.
For more on this incredible story, listen along. And be sure to leave comments and tell us your favorite part about the story!