When our first adoption fell through, someone told me, "Ian, you're meant to have the children you're meant to have. Your children are out there, you just don't know them yet."
Ten million children under the age of five die every year. When I started medical school that number was double, and though we have come a long way, this is not good enough.
Despite good grades, accomplishments, pleasant manners and common sense, many of our sons are seen as aggressive or prone to violence. When they transgress, as kids will always do, they are judged on a double standard.
In Jack's mind, you never lose friends, you just don't see them outside of your own mind as much as you used to. And to my son, that is the beauty of life. You just keep adding more and more friends. It never ends!
I truly believe people were not being malicious with their comments and questions; they were just unfamiliar with or uneducated on adoption or how best to congratulate us.
A single woman on a teacher's salary -- surely there must be better homes to place these children in? Julie had offered to take any child that needed a home.
One of our children collected everyone's apple cores and saved them next to her seat. We tried to assure her that we had more food, but nothing could persuade her to let us throw the apple cores away. We felt it was best to just let her have them, if it made her feel safer.
The hoops that LGBT parents and families jump through to protect and assert our rights are consistent reminders that we remain on unequal footing with our straight peers.
With somewhere between 5 and 7 million homeless animals entering U.S. animal shelters, it's unconscionable to suggest, as one writer did in the Washington Post, that adopting a pet from an animal shelter is a bad idea.
Folks are not familiar with issues around adoption and don't know the correct language to use unless they have been impacted by adoption or educated on the issues. Likewise with the LGBT community.
We love digging up videos of puppies doing adorable things online. Thanks to ShelterMe.com, we can put this guilty pleasure to good use by spending time with shelter animals and sharing their photos and videos with the world.
Now, I don't know what is true or not. I think there are three people in this world that know exactly what happened there and unfortunately, they are not issuing a joint statement.
In April, I changed somebody's life. I set out to raise money to help a cleft-affected girl in my former orphanage in China and was successful -- wildly so. But the life I changed was actually my own. In trying to help someone else, I found my community.
That any church these days would take the step toward full inclusion of the LGBT community is courageous. That the Salvadoran Episcopal Church's Sexual Diversity Ministry even exists is a miracle to behold.
Adopting or acquiring an animal -- any animal -- is a lot of work, and it is a gamble. These two things are true every time. Before bringing a pet into your life, you have to be certain that you have the wherewithal, commitment, and maturity to rise and meet that challenge, now or later -- whatever it may be.
My instinct was to defend and protect my cub, to nip the lies in the bud and reinforce them with truth. However, I realized that I'd been granted a rare glimpse into my child's daily life -- and that 99% of these situations will take place when I'm not around.