Coyote Hill provides long term stability for children and sibling groups until they can find permanent placements, either through reunification or adoption. As 2016 drew to an end, three brothers received the gift of a forever family through adoption. Former Home Parents of The Zimmer Home, Al and Rachel Howell, adopted the three brothers who lived in the Zimmer Home. Al and Rachel resigned their position last spring when they decided to adopt the boys. We asked Rachel to share this beautiful success story with you:
“It began in one moment on April 14, 2014. Our boys’ hopes of going home suddenly left them when they learned of their mother’s unexpected death. A goal they were so close to attaining was no longer an option.
“I remember the heavy grief that filled them and the desire that started to grow in our hearts to be the family they would long for. And yet, we were only a month away from making the transition from relief staff to full-time Home Parents, and we wanted to be faithful to that commitment. So how could we ask these kids, who were craving permanency, to wait for us?
“We wrestled with that for a long time, especially through their seasons of questioning, ‘Does anyone even want us?’ I desperately wanted to draw them into my arms in those moments and assure them they were being sought by a family who loved them more than they could know. But in that time of waiting, all five of us were being prepared for what was to come through lessons of faith, patience, and obedience.
“When we revealed to them our intentions two years later, so much of the groundwork had already been laid. We had wept with, laughed with, and parented them through those years, so the words, ‘I love you,’ had so much history within them. Despite the surprise of it, they were able to rest in knowing that this was going to be their new reality. Thus, right away we became mom and dad!
“I cannot imagine life without our three sons. Yes, it would be quieter. But what joy I would miss out on when our youngest, Korbyn, races through the house yelling ‘DAD!!’ and jumps into Al’s arms when he gets home from work. I would miss so many little details if it weren’t for Cameron prompting me to observe, ‘Look at this, mom! Did you know that every single snowflake is different? God must be really creative!’ And my heart would be lacking so much love if Adrien didn’t hold my hand, lean his head against my shoulder, and say, ‘I’m glad we’re a family.’
“Although life may be busier, louder, and a little exhausting, these boys have stolen our hearts and made for a fuller, more joyous, and absolutely wild adventure.”