But he needs a family to step up. To that end, the message below came through an email list. I thought it was important to post here, because the child below has CP and numerous other challenges, more than Anthony. It's a lovely story and I hope it will inspire someone. Please pass it on!
My "Unadoptable" Son
Below is the story of a mother and her son. When others felt her son was
"unadoptable" she knew otherwise.
My "Unadoptable" Son
I met my son when I worked a long term care facility for children. I am a
physical therapist. Tim* came to the facility as a crack baby with multiple medical complications. He was born at 26 weeks in a crack house in Camden.
Somehow he managed to survive his birth. He had three brain bleeds at birth,
as well as hydrocephaly and seizures. A shunt was placed for the hydrocephaly. A
feeding tube was placed because he couldn't coordinate drinking from a bottle.
He spent months in Cooper Hospital's NICU, and then did a stay in a rehab
hospital. After that, he was moved to a residence for medically fragile
children in Camden to await a foster home equipped to handle his needs. This was all
before he turned one. A home wasn't found; he had some medical complications,
so he was moved to the long term care facility where I worked.
Once at the facility, his birth mother was prevented from seeing him due to
threatening staff. His birth father then surfaced, and he expressed interest
in bringing Tim home. However he could never get his act together to do this.
I was Tim's PT from the time he arrived until I brought him home -- four years
later. It took DYFS that long to finally terminate his parental rights! At
that time I was leaving the facility to pursue another job in Early Intervention. I
hated leaving Tim behind, and knew that his caseworker was not actively
looking for a home for him. So I decided as a single parent that I would bring him home .
Tim's medical history reads like a train wreck. He has cerebral palsy, reflux,
hydrocephaly, severe dysphasia, motor and cognitive impairments. He was 100%
tube fed when I brought him home. I taught him how to eat, although he still
doesn't know how to chew, so I have to chop his food up. We have multiple
doctors' appointments annually with all of his specialists at CHOP. He had two
shunt surgeries last year in seven weeks. He sounds pretty "unadoptable"
Now for the good part. He is an adorable loving boy who talks, walks, runs. He
loves Monster trucks, plays video games, and is learning to read, do math,
science, etc. He's not a "normal" 12-year-old. But he is my Tim, and I love
Even if he never made any more progress than where he was when I brought him
home, I would have loved him as much as I do today. He is a true joy, and
brings happiness to everyone he meets. My life would be empty without him.
* Not his real name