Espinet Family

Meet Giselle & Lili! This year, Giselle made it official and adopted 16-year old Lili! Giselle explains what inspired her to consider adoption, "I have always loved kids, but the opportunity for me to have my own never presented itself. I taught high school for many years, and I especially loved dealing with teenagers. About 3 years ago I felt a very strong calling to look into adoption. My brothers are adopted, so my family knows the journey of adoption. In my research I saw how difficult it is for teens in foster care. I knew I wanted to give a kid an opportunity to find a loving, safe place and connection to help them become successful and independent."

When asked what has been one of their favorite memories so far, Giselle shares, "There are so many memorable moments. Some of them are tiny moments when I realize how far she has come. Others are big, like when we went, just the two of us, to North Carolina for her 16th birthday. Lili had only been on a plane when she was very little, and she had never been on a vacation like this. We stayed in a cabin, and she and I explored and took tons of pictures. She said she wants to go back to the exact same cabin every time we go back."

Giselle continues, "Adoption isn’t an easy path. No amount of classes and prior experience can prepare you for what is ahead. But these kids need loving, committed families who won’t give up on them. As a single mom adopting a teenager I’m not sure I could have picked a tougher road, but I also love all the moments when I see my kid experience things she never was able to imagine before."

To learn more about teens available for adoption, check out our Heart Gallery.