JOURNALISTS ARE AFFLICTED with a disease called curiosity, and a number of years ago I saw a story that fascinated me. It was the tale of a couple in a very poor part of the United States who found out, when they were in their early twenties, that they couldn’t have any children.
They decided they would adopt a boy called Joshua, and later became foster parents to two more small boys, Dennis and Joey, who’d been rescued by Child Welfare from a horrendous situation. The two boys could barely speak English, and had invented their own so-called ‘survival jargon’ so the people in the home where they were being treated so badly wouldn’t know what they were saying to each other.
Suzie and Jim Izatt were eventually able to adopt the two boys as well.
I rang Suzie one day and said, “I’m coming through the States – can I come and meet you and see your three boys?” She said, “It’s a bit more crowded these days; there are actually six of us now!” Indeed, she and Jim had taken on three more boys – all with their own distinct set of challenges and difficulties.
I met Suzie as she proudly watched her three oldest adopted boys hitting golf balls at a driving range near their home. “Why do you do it?” I asked. Tears filled Suzie’s eyes as she said, “It’s my Dad’s fault. When I was very little, there was a man that he knew who was homeless, and he asked the rest of us if we could make room in our home for one more. We did, and it’s marked me forever.
“People say, ‘Suzie how can you love kids you didn’t bear?’ My answer to them is ‘How could I not love these boys that I didn’t bear?’
“They need me. And their lives and mine are now very full.”