Pieces fell into place for girl, forever family

Published on Saturday, 26 April 2014 21:08 - Written by Gillian Sheridan gsheridan@cbs19.tv

In November 2012, we profiled an adorable East Texas girl named Angel. This foster child was in need of a permanent home. Now, at 13 years old, she has found her forever family and changed her name to Ivy Kate. We sat down with her new family to share their story of adoption, which they say was “meant to be.”

Adoption was not something Lisa and John thought would be a part of their family. After all, they had two biological children and were a happy family. But then, things began to change. Lisa, who ironically was an adoption social worker at the time, began having dreams about the older children in foster care and “was very aware that they were not special to a single person on the planet.”

For the next 14 years, she prayed that a child would become part of their family through adoption. But John was not on board. Lisa finally gave up hope and decided to change her prayer, asking God “to take away her desire to adopt.” In the middle of her prayer, John called and said he had been praying, too, and felt God telling him “to stop saying no about adoption.”

Their growing family would begin to take shape when they saw a young girl on CBS 19’s weekly feature on foster children called Children are a Gift. “Seeing her picture and that huge smile, I think both of our hearts were probably gone after that.”

In December 2013, they adopted Ivy Kate.

“They are a fun-loving family and I’m happy to be in this family,” Ivy Kate said. “I have a big brother and he’s fun and same with my big sister. I thought it was going to be scary, but God told me that it would be OK, and it has been.”

“She is a very sweet girl,” Lisa said. “She does not have a mean bone in her body.”

And they believe she was the perfect fit for their family.

“We are a faith-based family so we really believe that everything happens for a reason and that we were matched to her not only by the state, but also providentially,” John said. “I think God placed that on our hearts at the right time and she came along at the right time.”

Ivy Kate came into care with some serious health issues, a result of being diagnosed with Type I diabetes. John is a paramedic and Lisa’s dad was a Type I diabetic, so both were familiar with her medical issues and willing to do what it took to keep her healthy.

“When you live with a kid who has a chronic illness like diabetes, it’s a 24/7 job,” John said.

Ivy Kate is doing exceptionally well since coming to her new family. She is healthy, back on track with school and finally has a future with lots of opportunities ahead.

“They are great,” Ivy Kate said, looking at her parents.

“She’s a fulfillment of a dream for me,” Lisa said. “I feel very honored to be allowed to be a part of something that is blessing someone else. I feel very honored to be her mom.”

“I didn’t realize that I wasn’t done being a dad,” John said. … We still have a lot more to give.”

And they hope sharing their story will encourage other families to help foster children.


To learn more about Ivy Kate’s adoption story, join Gillian Sheridan for her Children are a Gift report, Tuesday night on CBS 19 Ten @ 10. You can also find information on www.cbs19.tv or www.tylerpaper.com . To inquire about an East Texas child waiting to be adopted, call 903-533-4109.