Okay. So, I want to back up to Friday and talk a little bit about my day…. kinda. It wasn’t anything special or out of the ordinary. We got up in the morning and did changeover with the relief house parents and began our four day weekend. The kids got up and got ready for a trip to Lynchburg. I loaded my wife’s bike (more on that later) into the truck and, after tying up some loose ends around the house, we took off for Lynchburg.
I spent the entire afternoon with my kids and it was awesome. We went to Blaze pizza (one of our favorites) for lunch. The kids were boring and ate pepperoni pizzas while I went all out and lost track of the number of toppings that adorned my pie.
After lunch, we went to Toys R Us and did some pretend shopping. The kids would point out to me all of the things that they wanted for Christmas and then I would take pictures of them when they weren’t looking. Shopping list achieved….
We spent about an hour at Toys R Us before heading over to the Venue for a movie. We prefer this theater over the Regal because it is extremely cheap (something like $2.00 per person). However, it typically plays movies that have been out for a while and we don’t even care. We loaded up with popcorn and soda and caught Despicable Me 3. It was funny and the kids enjoyed it. It definitely wasn’t the best movie in the series but it made for a great afternoon with my babies.
Now, you might be thinking a few different things right now….
Thing #1: Wow, Zach is an awesome dad and spends a lot of one on one time with his kids.
Thing #2: I wonder where his wife is while all of this is going on.
Thing #3: Why did they load her bike into the truck if she wasn’t with them?
Well, I have an explanation for all of those things but first, let’s talk about adoption. For the past eight years, I have found myself to be abnormally close to a lot of family dysfunction. I have seen children fall through the cracks of life. I have witnessed terrible neglect and have had my heart broken over and over again by parents who emotionally destroy their children.
Most of the children that I have worked with are not adoptable. Now, what I mean by this is that they have a family already. We spend time working with them but they eventually go home. However, that is not always the case. About a year and a half ago, I met a little boy who fit this description. He lived in residential care and would not be returning home.
Some friends of mine (who I have mentioned here) made the decision to make this little boy a part of their family by adopting him into their home. However, adoption is not cheap. There are a lot of different fees and expenses that pile up over time. My friends have sold nearly every single asset that they have in order to meet these needs but have found themselves coming up short at the very end.
So, my wife chose to become a part of the process. A couple of weeks ago, she posted up on facebook that she would ride her bike for 1 mile in a banana costume for every $25 that was donated the Durham’s GoFundMe page. We advertised this fundraiser through Facebook and our network of social media friends and began watching as the donations rolled in.
When all was said and done. Elisa’s fundraiser had pulled in nearly $1,3000 and required her to log 50 miles in her costume.
That’s why my wife wasn’t with me at the theater.
Now, on to Thing #1: I love my children. They are so amazing and perfect and simply incredible. I love spending time with them. But, I am not that perfect dad that spends all of his extra time with his kids. Had Elisa not been riding, she most likely would have been right there in the theater with me. However, I am grateful for having that afternoon to spend with them alone. It was fun.
In regards to Thing #2 & 3: While I was lounging around with the kids all day, my wife rode 44 miles (and finished up the last six on Monday) around the Lynchburg area advertising the Durham’s adoption. For anyone that stopped her, she had a slip of paper to give them with a link to Nick & Bambi’s page.
Before all was said and done, she had even gained the attention of the local News station who came down and did an interview with her as well as a write-up on the Durham’s story for Monday nights news.
Guys (and gals), that’s what a hero looks like. If you are married, encourage your spouse to pursue things that make them passionate (even if it seems silly) because you will truly see the best of them come out. If you are single, look for someone like my wife to marry. I promise you that your life and your marriage will be packed with joy to the point of spilling over.
Life is Strange. Live it Well.