Foster Parents Wanted To Adopt Them Both, But Just Before The Verdict Teen Had Something To Say On His Family
The first thing that comes to our mind when we hear the word ‘family’ is happiness, a warm home, and a safe place. However, for some people, that’s not the case. Simply said, not everyone is blessed with a happy family, or family at all. Moreover, at this moment there are thousands of children all around the world living alone or in dysfunctional families.
Luckily, there are everyday heroes, people who try to make this world a better place. Many people look forward to adopting children and offering them a safe and loving home. But, often a happy face doesn’t mean a happy home. Here is a real-life story about a teenage boy who had the courage to take control of his life in his own hands and speak up about the family that was adopting him.
1. It All Starts With A Strong Dream
Adopting children requires more than just a dream, and Sara and Stuart Cozad learned that hard way.
This couple will forever remember August 13th, 2018. They were in court next to their foster children. The court was about to decide if Sara can legally adopt children.
2. Tears Running
Sara had her entire family support. Everyone was there. It was time for the judge to speak up and tell if Sara and her husband can become parents. The final decision was near.
Suddenly, out of nowhere, the older boy, Dayshawn interrupted the judge. Dayshawn has something to say about his family, which left everyone in tears.
3. Good Things Take Time
Waiting for the verdict wasn’t easy for Sara and her husband. The whole process took too long and that day seemed like an eternity.
Ever since Sara was a little girl she wanted to be a foster mom. Therefore, the future of this 26-year-old was unclear, and she wanted her dream to come true.
4. Seven Years Ago
Seven years prior to this court moment, Sara met the love of her life, her current husband, Stuart Shank. She told him about her dream of being a foster mom on their first date.
Surprisingly, Stuart liked the idea of being a foster parent with Sara, and seven years later they sat in court together waiting for turning moment in their lives.
5. Just Do It
Some people may find it strange to share massive dreams on your first date, but for Sara, her dream was such an important part of her life that she wanted all cards open.
She was surprised when Stuart took her dream so serious and well. She was impressed. At that moment, she knew that they were a perfect match.
6. It Must Be Love
It’s not common for people to click immediately on their first date, especially when one wants to adopt children. The fact that Sara and Stuart clicked was a sign of true love.
They instantly fell in love and in 2014 they were married. They had two major steps after their wedding. The honeymoon was the first one, and the second one was planning their foster parent’s journey.
7. Young Kids
Sara wanted to become a foster mom so much, that she forgot that is only 23. But, after all, it’s never too early have your dreams accomplished, right?! Plus, Sara always wanted to foster younger children.
Up until that point, she lacked the experience to deal with kids who were close to her age. In addition, she imagined herself and her husband with younger children.
8. The First Step
Sara and Stuart were so excited when they made their first steps as foster parents. They started taking in children and raising them as their own. They helped them with their homework and social life.
Most children they took in were very young. Moreover, in the beginning, they fostered only toddlers and newborns. At the time it was fit for their case, according to the social worker.
9. First Seven Days
Their first task was to take care of a boy named Michael for just two night. But, instead of for a weekend, Michael stayed for a week.
It seemed that both Sara and Stuart connected with the child and it was challenging for them to let him go.
10. Something Changed
Michael completely captured their hearts. Suddenly, everything was changed.
So, basically, a weekend turned into a week. And that week turned into months. And those months turned into years. It seems that they didn’t even notice how quickly the time passed by.
11. Was Michael The Only Child?
Having a boy over the weekend wasn’t supposed to last for months, but Michael captured their hearts and they weren’t ready to let him go. Moreover, Michael had a little surprise for them.
One day, Sara and Michael, had a special visit. They were asked to foster one more child, and shockingly it was Michael’s older brother, Dayshawn. They were together for the first time.
12. The Unity
This was a moment full of tears and joy. Dayshawn ran to his brother and hugged him. That was the longest hug ever.
Brothers were so happy that they were united, and at that moment Sara and Stuart knew that they had to do something and keep the boys together.
13. One More Child
Sara and Stuart knew that the only way for boys to stay together was to keep them under one roof. But, adopting a pre-teenager boy wasn’t Sara’s initial plan.
At the time Sara was only ten years older than Dayshawn. So, Sara and Stuart talked about fostering Dayshawn, and afterward, they talked with Dayshawn.
14. Change Of Plans
Once they talked with Dayshawn, Sara and Stuart realized that this change of plans might not be that big of a deal. So, she had to make a decision, and she talked about it on her blog ‘Love What Matters.’
She wrote: ‘We advocate for reunification whenever it’s possible. The best part about fostering is seeing parents work tremendously hard to get their children back.’ Therefore, Dayshawn stayed under their roof.
15. Happy Home
Although they never planned to foster older child, Sara and Stuart had no regrets for fostering Dayshawn. They loved every moment Michael and Dayshawn spend together.
Seeing how boys are happy together was more than this married couple could ever ask for. They knew that the only way for boys to stay together was to adopt both of them.
16. Adoption Was Never A Plan
They had to start the adoption process as soon as possible, or brothers would be separated once again. And they were not willing to let that happen.
When they started the adoption process they learned that they will have to spend a year with boys, apply for custody and then wait. So they waited. For many years to come.
17. It’s Not All Sunshine And Rainbows
Taking in two children was a wild ride for the young couple. Adopting one child is difficult, let alone adopting two of them.
Despite everything Sara and Stuart had their mind on the final goal, and that was adopting the boys and giving them home and family. Sara talked about difficult moments on her blog.
18. The Final Decision
While everyone was waiting for the court’s decision, Dayshawn decided to share his thoughts on his family, regardless of the court’s decision. This is what he said.
“We love them. Our whole family is the best thing we ever had. I’m glad to have these people in my life. I’m glad to be their son. They’re the best thing I ever had.” His parents had nothing but love and tears at that moment.
19. Shank Family
This speech brought a happy end, as the court allowed Sara and Stuart adoption. Boys finally had a place that they could call home. In addition, boys took family names ‘Shank’.
They have continued living as a happy family. But, this new beginning wasn’t an end for fostering. Soon afterward, they opened the door of their home to a girl who was a victim of sex trafficking.
20. Doing More
Sara and Stuart learned how to deal with children with different backgrounds and experiences from their own. They were eager to help them.
Nowadays, the Shank family enjoys spending family time together, while they are helping many others for weeks or even months. We have nothing but respect for Shank family.