Meet Our Social Services Team: Nichole Deal, Missouri
Did you know that America World works in all 50 states and has offices in 23 states, including our corporate office? We provide home study and post-adoption services to families adopting domestically and internationally, through America World or through another licensed agency. Each state is directed by one of our trained adoption professionals who share our vision for placing children in loving, Christian homes. Our Directors are a vital part of our organization, and on the first Monday of each month, we would like to honor them by spotlighting one of them on our blog.
This month we highlight Nichole Deal. Nichole wears two hats – she is Director of our Missouri office and also our Program Manager for Honduras! Nichole brings a unique perspective to her job—she was adopted as an infant, and on May 22, she shared this story about her Special Adoption Day:
ON THIS DATE, many, many years ago, nervous new parents, who had gone through lots of ups and downs along their adoption journey, just as many do, were finally handed their two-month-old baby girl that they had been praying for. On their several-hour drive home that day from the Catholic adoption agency, the new adoptive mom began telling her baby girl about her adoption story. That new mom said she never wanted to feel uncomfortable talking about the adoption story with her daughter, so she just started saying it out loud from the very beginning. That mom also shared that she was told by many “friends” that she didn’t really have to tell her daughter that she was adopted. Now, this was a super small town in the Midwest in the 1970’s too, so adoption was not talked about much, if at all. She was a Caucasian child in a Caucasian family and she would never have to know, said many. That adoptive mom, however, told her daughter as she grew that she would always know and they would always celebrate the story of how their family became a family of three…
…And, we did. We called it My Special Adoption Day. Whether it was my parents taking part of the day off and we spent time together at the park or going out for supper and my parents let me pick the place, which when I was younger, was always McDonald’s and my parent’s just said, “ok!” even though that wasn’t where they wanted to go! The day always included the story of that first day together, the day that my parents brought me home and how my mom started telling me about my adoption story. There was the funny story, too, about how they forgot to bring a can opener for the baby formula and had to stop at a farmhouse and ask to borrow one so that they could feed me a bottle on that first ride home! As I grew, adoption was always an important topic and if I had questions, we talked through them as a family, even if there weren’t any answers, as mine was a closed adoption and there wasn’t much information.
I have always known that God placed me in the exact family that was meant and hand-picked especially for me. Even though my parents have both been gone for a long time now, I still cherish this day and think fondly of my parents and thank them for all that they did for me. Today, I celebrated by having a home study visit this morning with one family, completing/signing a home study for another family this afternoon and sharing part of my adoption story with all of you. It was an awesome Special Adoption Day! 🙂
Thanks, Nichole, for sharing this story with us! Does your family celebrate a Special Adoption Day? Tell us about it on our Facebook page!