McQuillan describes having this gift as the most beautiful thing ever.
Here, we chatted with her about adopting her sons, and she also shared some advice about what parents need to know and expect when they embark on this journey.
Jennifer and her husband Lance genuinely loved children and family. They started their adoption process with a recommended private social worker who was knowledgeable and equipped to walk this journey with them.
McQuillan recalls how joyous they were as a family when they came home with their twin boys for the first time. She says that she instantly formed a bond with them.
"My wish for my children is for them to grow up with empathy and love for themselves and others around them. Not exposing children enough to the world is doing them a disservice as we need to help prepare them for this life, laying crucial foundations in their early childhood," Jennifer says.
"Their early years are the most important years where their characters and outlook on life are being formed and moulded. Our job as their parents is a highly responsible one, and we need to do right by them," added McQuillan.
Four years later, McQuillan still feels a tingle of delight every time she hears them say 'mommy' and 'daddy'. She says that the privilege of adoption has enabled this, and she is eternally grateful for this.
Advising parents embarking on this journey, McQuillan said that it is essential to have your family's support when you begin the adoption process because adoption is a huge life change, and it comes down to what you make of it. She believes that no one else can make it work for you. Only you can.
"Be grateful for each new day, which brings a new opportunity. You only need to take the considered risk of reaching out and capturing it!"
"Finding support among other adopters is critical, where you can discuss your daily challenges practical issues you have encountered and lean on each other for advice. One example of a support group on Facebook is Passionate about Adoption, she says.
"You need to be open with your social worker, your family, your friends, your spouse (if you have one), your biological children (if you have) and your support network about this process," says McQuillan.
She added that adopting parents must have knowledge, strength, fortitude, prayer, patience, an open heart and preparedness for when the child has arrived.
Adopting parents need not shy away from having those hard conversations with their adopted children, advises McQuillan.
She added, "We live in a country where poverty, stereotyping, racism, inequality, hunger and human need is so evident, and even at their tender age, we talk about these authentic topics in frank and age-appropriate conversation".
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