I met AD in March, just after I transferred from a high school library to an elementary school library. Yes, for now, I will not be revealing her name, just using initials.
I was working in the library when I saw her. She was taller than all of the other 4th graders and there was just something a little different about her. So I started asking questions.
I found out that she was living in a group home, had been homeless, living in a car for two years prior to ending up in Arizona and was in 4th grade since no one knew what grade she was supposed to be in. She was 12 years old.
I got to know AD, I talked to her about books since she seemed to like them, as do I. She freely volunteered information about her life and her situation. It didn’t paint a pretty picture.
My heart was heavy for her for the next few months, never leaving my thoughts. I shared my feelings with my husband and children at home. We were sympathetic to her situation but didn’t have a solution. Yet.
Then I went to church on Mother’s Day. The sermon was on taking care of orphans and widows. In the Bible, James 1:27 states, “the Christian who is pure and without fault, from God the Father’s point of view, is the one who takes care of orphans and widows, and who remains true to the Lord—not soiled and dirtied by his contacts with the world.” The Living Bible. Then I felt God stirring something in my heart about AD. And, in His way, she was constantly on my mind. The church had a Foster Care/Adoption event that weekend where we could learn more. My husband and I thought, “What could it hurt? Let’s go find out what all of this means.”
Well, we went to the information meeting and the orientation and learned what we could do for AD. I called CPS to inquire about her case and the caseworker called me first thing in the morning. Much faster than what I had expected! And so, the adventure began.