April 22, 2024

Adoption Impacts: Dana Poynter


In addition to the hundreds of families I have assisted through the adoption process over the past 16.5 years, I have two personal favorites regarding two of four children who call me "mom" "mama" "mommy" or sometimes "bruh".

During the same week I began working at an adoption agency in Lexington, Kentucky, which would later become part of Nightlight Christian Adoptions, a handsome little boy was born in Guatemala! Four months later, he and another infant boy were still waiting to be matched with a family. A co-worker walked past my office, holding both files, one in each hand, lifted above her head, praying, "Father God, I lift these two little boys to you to help us find loving families for each of them...." A few days later, I asked if they were still available and if I could review their files. Almost immediately, we started filling out paperwork, and one year later, Edison joined our family forever. There has never been a question in my mind that God intended him to be my son. It's amazing how quickly the years have passed. He is 16 years old! He has a great group of friends, doesn't complain about going to school, has a driver's license and part-time job at our local pizza joint! The day I met him, I rubbed and rubbed his back to soothe him as he cried and grieved. To this day, there is nothing more precious to me when he snuggles in close and with his deep, grown-up voice, asks me to rub his back.

Fast forward to the pandemic! My first cousin, "T" had fostered a 16 month old baby girl from birth as fictive kin. T became very ill with coronavirus and both she and the baby were transported by ambulance to the nearest ER. Prior to calling the ambulance, she placed a frantic plea on our family's facebook page asking if anyone would care for the little girl while she recovered. As soon as my husband walked in from work I said, "Hey! I've got something on my heart we should discuss. T is very sick with covid and needs someone to keep her little girl for a while." He said "I guess we can take care of a baby for what, three weeks? Isn't that how long it takes to recover?" What little we knew of God's plan! By that evening, we had received donations of baby gear, made a trip to Walmart for necessities, had a quick home visit from a social worker, and brought home an adorable blonde-hair, blue eyed toddler who had also tested positive for Covid. By the time I was able to pick her up from the ER she had been strapped into a car seat for hours, screaming, and T was being admitted to the hospital. T would end up being on a respirator for over 3 weeks and our family was told more than once she would not survive. Through many prayers and lots of faith, she did survive and spent months recovering. During that time, my husband and I had fallen in love with a precious little girl. We were both praying separately that if we were meant to be her parents, that T would ask us to adopt her. I can't describe the feeling I had the day I answered the phone and my cousin said "I wasn't sure I was the right person to adopt her. I always felt like she needed both a mama and a daddy. At this point, I am not going to be able to care for her but I would love for you all to adopt her." Because parental rights had been terminated, we were able to quickly move from fostering to adoption. Carolina officially became ours a few weeks following her 2nd birthday. She is a sassy 4-year old with a large vocabulary, even bigger personality and a love of all things Barbie!

When I adopted Edison, my two biological children were 14 and 10. When we adopted Carolina, my children were 28, 24 and 14. My oldest daughter said, "Mom, I've figured you out. When you have a hateful teenager in the house, you adopt a toddler!" Maybe there is some truth to that... It is fun to note that my husband and I, together, have 6 kids (ages 31, 30, 30, 26, 16 and 4) and five grandchildren (ages 11, 10, 9, 8 and infant).


Dana Poynter, Kentucky Executive Director

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