Ana got adopted today

When my daughter Clara was 4 years old, a very odd, disturbed little girl joined her pre-school in the middle of the school year. The woman who brought her in looked rather freaked out so we got to talking, and this is what she told me.

When the woman, Wendy, went to visit some relatives out of town, she felt obligated to spend some time with an aunt who was a permanent huge mess. She was a drug addict, in and out of jail, etc. The aunt asked Wendy if she would take care of her daughter for a while. “How long?” asked Wendy, “Well permanently I guess” answered her aunt.

So being the wonderful soul that she is, Wendy went on this vacation as a single, childless computer programmer and returned with a seriously neglected 4 year old girl, Ana. Ana couldn’t walk or talk, and she spent most of the time hiding under tables. Who knows what conditions she’d endured those first 4 years. Wendy had to go to work, so she brought her to my daughter’s preschool.

My daughter Clara is a maternal sort and she immediately put herself in charge of Ana. She talked and sang to her, and helped her come out of her shell.

Fast forward a year and Ana and Clara are at Kindergarten together. Ana is still very shy, but she runs around with the other children and her speech is hugely improved.

Fast forward 2 more years and both girls are in 2nd grade. Ana is reading and doing school work at normal grade level. She take gymnastics, is active in her church youth group and is on the junior soccer team. She is shy around people she doesn’t know, but most 8 year olds are. She seems in every way a totally normal, happy little girl.

And today, this morning, Clara and I went to watch Wendy adopt Ana. It was a privilege to see the law make official the relationship that has been real for 4 years now.

It amazes me to this how different Ana’s life would have been if she’d stayed with her basket-case of a mother. Now, with lots of love, patience and attention, she’s gone from being a backwards, damaged child to a confident, smart, energetic girl. And her future is boundless.

Yea Wendy and Ana!

This post actually made me tear up a little. I’m so happy that Wendy took Ana and gave her a chance she never would have had with her own mother. It’s beautiful that Ana can grow up now knowing that she is loved and wanted. Thank you for posting this beautiful story.

We need more Wendy’s in this world.

And awful as Ana’s birth mother was, at least she knew enough to give her daughter into the care of a woman who could be a good mother.

This is the kind of story I would love to see more here on SDMB—Thank You.

Congrats to Wendy and Ana!!!

Yay Ana! Yay Wendy!

And give a special hug to Clara from all of us, PV – sometimes it takes another child to get through where adults cannot, and Clara sounds like one of those special ones who steps up and does what’s needed, knowing instinctually, in her heart, what another kid needs and giving it, also from her heart. Be proud of that little angel, PV!

This was just what I needed to read this morning. Thanks for posting it (and thanks to Wendy!).

(damn allergies, got a runny nose now!)
What a wonderful story!!!

That is awesome. Please send my congrats to both Wendy and Ana!

What a great story! ::sniff sniff::

What a wonderful story, thanks for sharing it.

Thanks for all your well wishes. They are indeed a special pair.

Now that she is Ana’s ‘real mom,’ Wendy is planning to take in another foster child. Ana wants a sister and there are so many more children in need.

Woah. Your story brightened my afternoon.

Go Ana and Wendy! :cool:

What a wonderful story - Thank you Wendy!

It’s stories like this that make me more and more determined to, when we are organized and ready, be Foster Parents - they just need more “good people” like this to help.

It doesn’t fix all of the bad, but it shows that there is good out there too…

That is a heart-warming story. Good for Wendy indeed - what a difference she made in Ana’s life! (Good for her birth mom for giving her up, too - that really does sound like tragedy averted.)

In my heavily abbreviated story I left out the fact that Ana has a much older sister, like 18 years apart. Negligent-mom raised her older sister the whole time.

The older sister died 2 years ago, a drug-addicted prostitute. SO I know exactly what future would have awaited little Ana had her mother not had the rare good sense to hand her over to Wendy.

Darn…I think there’s something in my eye

::gets tissue::

Good for Wendy and Ana! and your Clara sounds like a kid I’d like to know too.

Awww…single tear

I can scarcely imagine the sort of compassion and balls it must take to be told that you’ve just inherited a daughter and not run screaming.

On the other hand, I can imagine how awesome a person with that combination of compassion and balls must be. Here’s to you, Wendy.

A touching story. Sending out a wish for a lifetime of joy for both of them.

Yeah, I was gonna say – go Clara!