Friday, April 26, 2013


My heart aches with gladness today as I share the last section of Sheila Callanan's reunion story. For me this has been a dream come true to share such a story that has touched my heart to its depths. Thank you Sheila.  I always knew this much love was possible. And I am so thankful to God for bringing us together as friends. We too share something, and one day we will meet in person. Thank you, my friend. For I believe the Lord brings back the years the locusts have eaten, and our lives are bountful with His love and goodness.

and now . . . Sheila Callanan's final chapter in the Cape Town An Adoption Story

“I am not sure how one ever expresses gratitude to a person for making a sacrifice that brought the most unbelievable joy to a family.  All I can say is thank-you from the bottom of my heart ….. I believe that people have the capacity to love many people in different ways - not overlapping but side by side, each one having a different relationship.  Because of this belief I share Susan with you.  When I refer to you as Susan’s mother to people they do not always understand, they argue that I am her mother - I don’t expect them to understand.  For me, Susan has two mothers.”

This is part of a letter I wrote to Susan’s mother before she came to South Africa.    I wanted her to know that her coming here was fine with us.   In some ways we had prepared for this for 21 years.

Three months after we had met her we were also able to meet Susan’s biological father.  He flew to Cape Town from the USA.

Susan’s mother had made it as easy as possible for her to make contact with her father.   She made every effort to find out where he was - she never hesitated to do this or ever mentioned that it was hard for her - she only thought of Susan at that time.

As I write we have just purchased air tickets to once again visit America.  Are we visiting family?  Of course we are – a very unique one.  We have been five times.   Susan has been four – the last trip was in 2012 when she, her husband and three children were able to spend Christmas with them. 

On her second visit she went alone and was there when the 9/11 attack took place.  Quite an anxious time for us back in South Africa. Susan’s mother has been able to come out and visit them at their home in Durban where they now live.  (For overseas readers - Durban is on the East coast of South Africa and about a two hour flight from Cape Town.)  Susan’s husband, Jean-Ray is one of the Pastors at a large Baptist Church in Westville, Durban.
Forty years later our home is filled with the sounds of children.  Susan and her three children, Camilla age 10, Aren age 7 and Elissa age 6, are living with us for a year while she does her honours in psychology.  The cycle begins again as Susan’s son Aren is adopted.
Sheila's daughter Linda and her husband

Susan and Jean-Paul and their children
Sheila's husband with two of the grandchildren, Linda's kids.
 Thank you, to all those of have read these articles, for walking this path of sweet memories with me. 
To those who have read the story and remembered that they were part of it – you will always have a special place in my heart.

And from one mother to another – Vicki I love you more than words can tell.
Sheila Callanan, Cape Town, 2013


I never ever knew your name
I never knew from whence you came
But gazing down at the sleeping child
I thought of you and I ached inside.

I bore you up before our God
The sacrifice had been so hard.
One day somehow, somewhere, some place
Would God allow you to see her face.

I loved her, I cared for her she was my own,
We laughed, we cried she brought joy to our home.
I watched her skate, I heard her sing,
My heart was glad as she served the King.

Mother of my child, you were always in my heart,
I thought of you, I prayed for you, in my life you had a part.
Your eyes, your nose, the colour of your hair,
Your height, your walk what all did she share.

The Spring morning dawned, the sun shone bright
Today I would meet you – it seemed so right.
God had intervened in an unbelievable way,
Only He could have planned this miraculous day.

And now together we can join hands
As she and her husband go to far distant lands,
Prayed for much more than so many others
‘Cos God had planned she would have
Christine here again. I cannot see this photo often enough. Such a joy to see the combining of two familys into one through the birth and raising of one child--and Adoptive family and a birth family. 
Only God can weave such joy together as He looks down from on high to His children in this part of the world.

From this birthmom to Sheila and Vicki, again, thank you for sharing your story. 

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