My name is Jayme Reid. Even before my husband Bilal and I married nearly two years ago, we knew that we wanted to adopt a child. I wasn’t sure how it worked, so I began surfing the web and requesting information. Bilal and I went to the local farmer’s market one day and someone was distributing information about fostering children. We read the information and decided to become foster parents.
While we were attending the Deciding Together course (an alternative to TIPS-MAPP), we began to think that adoption was best for us. There are so many children who need a forever home! We got our foster care license and began watching the Adopt Kansas Kids website, looking for children who needed a forever home.
We saw a picture of little boy named Da’Mir and asked our foster care worker for more information. Eventually, we got to meet Da’Mir. I was terrified at our first meeting, wondering if he would like us. My husband took my hand and said, ‘If it is meant to be, honey, it will happen.’ ”
We took Da’Mir for lunch. As we were eating Da’Mir said, “You know, you are my first white mommy and black daddy I ever had.” I asked him if that would by OK. He said, “Sure. I just wanted you to know this.” Hearing that made me feel so much better.
We just meshed together that day as a family. Da’Mir continued to communicate with us, and he visited our home. He moved to our home on July 18, 2014, as our foster child. Leaving his previous foster home was emotional for him. Bilal and I took off work for two weeks to help with the adjustment.
The next step was adoption. This was not an easy process. When we read his file, it was heartbreaking to read about the things he had been through. After reading the file we decided 100 percent we wanted to be Da’Mir’s parents. We wanted to give him a chance at a new life with a forever family. I don’t think Da’Mir believed this was really going to happen. I am sure children in his situation have gone through lots of disappointments. We did our best to reassure him.
A Forever Family
Da’Mir took our last name and was officially our son on Feb. 26, 2015, after 1,289 days in foster care. When he was getting ready to go to the courthouse that morning he said it felt like a dream. He couldn’t believe it was really going to happen. I assured him that no matter what, it was going to happen. Family and friends attended this wonderful event and it was such a special day. Our son beamed ear to ear telling everyone, “I am here forever and I am not going anywhere.”
Adoption is special to us because you are giving a child security and a future. You think you are giving them love, family and a home but you are giving them so much more. This has changed our life so much but for the better. It is such a blessing. Da’Mir has a lot of energy but we keep up with him. But after he goes to bed around 8 we are in at 9. Our friends giggle when we say that but it is so true. We wouldn’t have it any other way! We can’t see our life without him.
Every new experience with Da’Mir feels like a new chapter in a book. As a family we take one day at a time and are thankful for the time we have together. We may be teaching him to be a young man but he is teaching us so much, too. We love this child so much.
Da’Mir has always called us Mommy and Daddy, but it is great to know I am legally his mommy. I recommend this to so many people that are interested in adoption because there are so many children of all ages who need a forever home. Adoption is so special to us because we were able to make a difference in a child’s life. We tell Da’Mir that it makes him more special because he chose us. We thank him often for choosing us.