Although they already had two sons, Rem and Ginger Rogers always knew they wanted to adopt.
They considered international adoption but decided they wanted provide a home for a local child in need.
â€œYouâ€™re so naÐ¿ve at the beginning,â€ said Ginger. â€œYou think â€˜Hey, I need a kid. Thereâ€™s lots of kids that need to be adopted.â€™ Itâ€™s just not that easy.â€
The Pumpkin Center couple signed on with the Department of Social Services to become foster-to-adopt parents. That was eight years ago.
Since initially becoming foster parents, the Rogers family has been through many ups and downs â€” legal battles, long waits, unruly foster children and, finally, a new daughter to call their own.
â€œI see the completing of our family,â€ said Ginger. â€œI feel good. I feel right.â€
The Rogersâ€™ daughter, Rosie, 7, came into their lives two years ago.
The couple received a call that afternoon, and Rosie and her sister (who shall remain nameless) moved in that evening, leaving little time to prepare.
â€œYou just have to jump in with both feet,â€ said Ginger.
Right away, the Rogers noticed behavioral problems. The girls, two out of four sisters taken into DSS custody, had short attention spans. They could sit still for â€œmaybe two minutes â€” maybe.â€ They also had trouble adjusting to a structured lifestyle.
The girls stayed with the family for a month before the Rogers came to the conclusion it wasnâ€™t working out.
â€œWe loved the girls very much,â€ said Ginger. â€œItâ€™s just it was so busy with waking up early and going to bed late and the boys were not getting any attention at all.â€
The couple emphasizes that one of the key components of being foster parents is to know your own limitations. With two wild girls in the house, the Rogers had met theirs.
â€œThat was probably one of the hardest experiences weâ€™d been through, coming to that reality,â€ Rem said.
And so, Rosie and her sister left the family. Over the course of two years Rosie was moved a total of four times.
The Rogers kept track of the two sisters. They knew they didnâ€™t want to break the girls up, but they also knew their family couldnâ€™t handle both.
â€œThey were compounding each other,â€ said Rem.
When news came that the girls were going to be split up, DSS workers asked the Rogers if theyâ€™d like to take in Rosie.
â€œWe said â€˜yesâ€™ immediately,â€ said Ginger.
Stability and normalcy didnâ€™t immediately follow â€” Rosie had been through a lot in her short lifetime. After moving in with the Rogers, she had to deal with a custody battle between her foster parents and birth mother.
The legal battle was also very trying for the Rogers.
â€œThat was just one of the hardest things Iâ€™ve ever done,â€ said Ginger. â€œI could never say I wanted a mother and her child to be separated.â€
This November, the debate ended and Rosie was officially made a Rogers. Her adoptive parents have seen enormous changes in their new daughter.
â€œThereâ€™s been progress in all kinds of things, just all the way through,â€ said Ginger. â€œIt has literally been such a major transition. Itâ€™s just like this weight of uncertainty has been taken off.â€
The Rogers say Rosie has the presence, drive and intelligence to do anything she wants with her life.
Once a wild child, she is now the calmest of their children, perhaps because of the trials she has faced.
â€œSheâ€™s become like an old soul in a little body,â€ said Ginger.
As for their years as foster parents, the couple wouldnâ€™t have it any other way. They also donâ€™t suggest jumping into the process blindly.
â€œItâ€™s not something for everyone,â€ said Ginger. â€œYou just have to be aware of your limitations.â€
by Sarah Grano