The Second Circle
Respite Retreats & Self-Care For Adoptive & Foster Families 

When the world says

"but you chose this...."

After leading the Reece's Rainbow Down Syndrome Adoption Grant Foundation for more than ten years, I've personally served hundreds of parents who chose to bring institutionalized, disabled orphans into their own families through the gift of adoption.  

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Adoption and the need for foster care is born of abandonment, trauma,  and loss.  Those factors alone figure intimately into a child's emotional development and ability to adjust to life in a family setting.  If they have any congenital complications or other disabilities, the struggle is often compounded.  That loss and lack of trust, as prolonged childhood trauma, can manifest itself into behaviors that both child and parents struggle to deal with.  It *DOES*  take more than just love to adopt.  It takes adequate preparation.  It takes faith.  It takes transparency & raw truth from adoption professionals & advocates.  It takes a LOT of honest self-reflection.  And it takes a village of experienced support behind you from the moment you even decide to step into the arena.  

Families who adopt and foster hurting children NEED MORE THAN WHAT THE SYSTEM IS GIVING THEM.   Families who struggle post-adoption often do so in isolation and fear of judgment.    They are criticized, and feel obligated to explain to, their friends, family, church, colleagues....people who know nothing of the realities of adoption.   "Auntie" understands.  I hear you.  

Through A Mother's Rest, our "Second Circle" care group  will plan respite retreats nationwide to supplement the online support groups in place.   When you need a break (not if), AMR is here to support you without judgment.   Nothing you can say will surprise us.  We've heard it all.   No one understands you better than those who are also struggling.    It's never "too soon" to vent.  It's never "too soon" to be concerned or worried.  It's never "too soon" to reach out for help.   Asking for support does not make you weak, it makes you SMART.   When your faith is shaken to the core, this community can lift you up.   We are here to give you the rest you need, and make it affordable.   Take time for yourself to recharge through recuperative, uninterrupted sleep.  Restore your spirit so you can go back home with a renewed sense of purpose and energy,   Invest in your own health so you can be the best parent possible to all of the children you're raising in your family. 

JOIN US:  

  • Adoption Prep Retreats:  Four days of intense education and fellowship, in a bed and breakfast, small group setting, hosted by adoption professionals and experienced special needs adoptive parents.  Licensed social workers, adoption counselors, clinical pediatricians, and others can provide you  with real-time, personalized support from the very beginning.   Home study and Hague training are just not enough to really understanding what you're getting into.   Know from the beginning that you will never be alone!  This is a journey AMR takes with you, to the very best of our ability and your needs.