Tonight at work I had the opportunity to wait on a woman and her two adult sons. Her sons both have down syndrome. I often see families dining out with a child who is clearly adopted, or a child with down syndrome. I do not usually initiate conversations with them, because they are simply looking to have dinner out, not necessarily to get into a conversation with me.
I could not resist, though, since I really could not tell if this woman was their caretaker, or mother. So at the end of their meal begged her pardon but told her I was curious. I am so glad to have spoken with her! Her sons were both adopted, the elder being 51 and the younger 31. She was a special education teacher and they both (years apart!) were in her classroom. Her elder son's birthmother died when he was born, and he was put into an institution out in Western New York where they live. He was 9 when she met him in her classroom and adopted him. The younger son was born in South Korea. His family was in the States on a professor exchange program, and they desired for him to be adopted while they were here so he could have a future.
To have adopted a child out of an institution 42 years ago is just mind boggling!! This woman--and her husband and biological children-- really put themselves out there to give those two boys (men now!) a home. I also shared briefly with her about our adoption experiences.
God crossed our paths only briefly tonight, they are from New York and are here visiting family, so I will never see them again and do not even know her name. What a blessing it was to have the brief conversation with her that I did, though!