For Katie Page, being a mother was always on top of her bucket list.
The 36-year-old of Parker, Colorado, was previously married, owned a home and had a good job.
“But my life was incomplete without being a mother,” she told Global News. Page got divorced in her early 30s and also had some infertility issues, she told ABC News.
“Life had obviously not turned out quite like I hoped and I felt called to serve as a mother in a non-traditional way,” she said.
She started looking into foster care.
“Foster care was a small step into motherhood that allowed me to give back and test out if I really could do it all on my own without a significant other,” she continued.
Page adopted Grayson in May 2017 when he was a baby. (ABC News adds that Grayson, who is now two, was abandoned at a hospital.) Today, Page has two adopted children and one foster child. Her second adopted child, Hannah, was adopted at 18 months old. Page was told about Hannah a month after formally adopting Grayson.
“I was not sure when I began fostering whether or not I would adopt, but obviously when Grayson was born that quickly became what I wanted most.”
Page recently discovered a bombshell: her adopted daughter Hannah was Grayson’s biological sister. When she brought her daughter home, she noticed the name of Hannah’s biological mother on the hospital bracelet. She had seen it before.
She talked to caseworkers and it turned out Hannah’s situation was similar to Grayson; both children were exposed to methamphetamines before they were born.
“When I found out they were [related] I was shocked,” she said. “I was extremely excited and grateful that I might now have the opportunity to learn more about Grayson’s family and how he came into the world. I couldn’t imagine a better gift in this world than to be able to give Grayson a blood relative to grow up with.”
She plans on adopting Grayson and Hannah’s other sibling sometime this year.
The road to adoption
The process to adopt both children has been complicated, she added, because the county she lives in never had a similar case.
“With the help of an amazing attorneys and caseworkers, we made it through what could have been really difficult,” she said. “It was scary at times trying to navigate the unknown, but everything ended up as we hoped in the end. The caseworkers, guardians and I all cried in celebration the day she joined our family forever.”
Page is now also an advocate for both adoption and fostering children.
“There are thousands of children around the world in people’s own communities and neighborhoods that need homes and deserve a family to love them. If people feel called and have the capacity to help a child, I believe it is one of the most rewarding life experiences you will ever have.”
She said watching her children grow up has been the best part. “Their battle is harder than many other children, so when I see them take that first step or speak a word it is truly so heartwarming and rewarding,” she said. “Grayson did not walk until he was almost 2.5 years old, so I cherish every time he stumbles towards me and says ‘Mama.'”
Foster care in Canada
If you’re interested in becoming a foster parent in Canada, contact a local children’s aid society or licensed foster care agency. In the province of Ontario, foster parents can care for up to four children at a time.
“Children can be placed in foster care by a children’s aid society for the child’s protection, voluntarily by their parents or caregivers, or by court order,” the site noted. “Children’s aid societies work to reunite the child with their parents when it’s safe and possible. If this is not possible, other permanency options may be explored such as customary care, legal custody or adoption.”