The first strokes of our story were penned on the first chapter of our life together as we pledged our whole hearts to each other and to our eternal family. Little did we know that it would not only be a difficult journey, with only one of eighteen pregnancies being successful, but it would also sparkle brightly with the intermittent arrival of the jewels of our four incredible children. Over a span of 30 wonderful years, God had delivered into our hearts and our home, from four very different avenues, the most beautiful family, and with this came a lifetime of shared experiences in adopted, foster-adopted, step and natural born children, as well as now daughter-in-laws and grand children. Our life together has been wonderfully rich and unique in both blessings and in challenges.
With each new challenge that arose from the circumstances of the special needs over the years, we researched and applied many strategies to help our children succeed in each chapter of their life. When we raised our middle son, it was strongly suggested that we begin giving him him strong pharmaceutical drugs for ADHD in order for him to attend school. He’s a grown man now, but at that time, I didn’t really know a lot, so I gave them to him for a short time. However, it wasn’t long before I could see the adverse affects and read about the harmful effects of them in others, and opted to take him off of the medication. I began homeschooling him, giving me an opportunity to teach him to use greater self-governance skills, and utilize healthy options in nutrition. Although there were benefits to the homeschooling and teaching of personal self control skills, the natural supplements that we tried to help with his ADHD were ineffective, and going back to school again was still a very painful and difficult task. I was so proud when he graduated and with each of his achievements, but it was incredibly hard for him.
Jump forward now to our last son, who we foster-adopted and who is now almost two years old. He had a plethora of problems from his difficult birth situations, including sensory issues which affected sleeping, as well as anger issues and ADHD. These were just a few that we could obviously see but had not been formally diagnosed as of yet. His sleeping problems due to sensory issues facilitated my desire to develop a crib mattress which would help these little ones to feel “hugged”, but still adhere to safe sleep measures, as my heart went out to him and other tiny ones like him whose development suffers due to their inability to fully rest. I developed the mattress Breathezzz which will be introduced in early 2018 as a result of this quest and am excited for little ones to finally be able to safely snuggle down and sleep well in them.
Also, we were ecstatic when our research brought the discovery of a new natural product that would help our little guy with his neurological problems without harsh medications! This, combined with our increasing knowledge and wisdom in parenting such a diverse family created an overwhelming desire within me to share what we have learned with others. And so began Crib Theories, Nurturing with Confidence and My Baby Snuggablezzz. As our hearts and our home have expanded one by one with the addition of each of our amazing children, so has our passion for finding those precious keys to helping children with special needs of any kind in their struggles. Our desire is to introduce healthy, strength-building solutions to the problems that they face physically, emotionally and spiritually, for the benefit of the children and their families.
Finally, our main goal is in encouraging others to get involved in the foster care program in any way that you can. There are so many children who need loving, caring, family oriented homes in which to begin healing from the devastating circumstances they have been brought from. My hope is that you will find a place in your prayers to ask God if you can be of service to these children, at whatever age, and will then find a place in your home and your heart for the ones that He brings into your care. I can tell you from my own experience – these are the lambs of which the Savior speaks as He encourages our seeking for the one who will respond to our tender voice as their personal shepherd. He joins our hearts, knits them closely together in unity, and binds them with love for eternity, as we sacrifice in His name for them. It is not always an easy pathway to walk, and the way may seem darker at times than at others, but I guarantee there will be an amazing array of sparkling stars as you take the time to look up and see them along the way.
As always, teach with spirit, nurture with confidence, instill with love.