Jeramy and Thea Barry have a simple way to explain their desire to adopt to their three little girls.
“We have a baby growing in our hearts,” Thea Barry said. The family will be one of the beneficiaries Saturday of the annual Trot to Adopt 5k fundraiser at Blanchard Woods Park in Evans.
The fundraiser will help five local families with adoption and also helps support The Village of Hope in Grabouw, South Africa, for children affected by HIV, AIDS and tuberculosis.
Thea Barry worked at Covenant Care Services for three years, counseling women who were considering adoptions, before deciding to stay home and care for the family’s three young girls: Nola, 4, and twins Olive and Adah, who just turned three this week. But she and her husband knew they would adopt a child even before their own children came along, Thea Barry said.
“I feel like a lot of people view adoption as Plan B,” the alternative route if they can’t have children of their own, she said. “For us, adoption was never Plan B.” The Barrys view it as an extension of their mission as Christians and something they feel called to do.
“We believe that God cares for all orphans, all of his children. He created all of them,” Thea Barry said. “Even though we had three kids, that didn’t deter us. It’s our desire that every child would have a home and a family, a two-parent family that loves them.”
While it has been part of their long-range plan, it was still “incredibly overwhelming” to consider the more than $30,000 it would cost for a domestic adoption, she said. That is where the fundraiser and others like it, through a lot of hard work, will help the family take on that cost, Thea Barry said.
They are working through an agency in Texas that has contacts in all of the other states and have created a profile that mothers looking to put a child up for adoption can view and hopefully choose, she said.
“Essentially, we’re in the waiting phase, just waiting for the phone call,” Thea Barry said.
Having worked in adoption services and now going through the process herself, she has run up against a lot of misconceptions people have about adoption. They assume there is something wrong with these women or they just don’t care about the babies, which is not true at all, Thea Barry said.
“The No. 1 misconception that we hear from people is that a birth mother places her child for adoption because she doesn’t love the child,” she said. “In reality, a woman choosing life for her baby and choosing a family for her baby is probably one of the most loving things someone could do. For a woman to choose to carry a child for nine months, to me that shows great love and great sacrifice. They are honoring the life that is inside of them and I think that takes a lot of love.”
Reach Tom Corwin at (706) 823-3213 or firstname.lastname@example.org.