little girl! We first met her birth father at a church cook out, he was there with a friend. He then came to our church some, he was living at the Union Rescue Mission, he had a drug problem and was getting help in their program. Not long after that, we met his girl friend, she was seven months pregnant and homeless. A couple in our church the Shaw’s, had her live with them, in a few weeks this was too much for them and she needed a home, Steve and I came home and had a family meeting, we ask our children if she could stay with us, she was to marry April’s birth father when he completed the program. They of course said yes, over the years we have had several people all ages live with us to help them, my children have always been so giving of them self Needless to say she moved in. On Dec. 28th she started having contractions, every time she would have one April would totally go crazy in her tummy, I could see her moving all over and kicking, she was not due till January. April’s birth mother is half Indian, joking, I told Steve we need to get her checked, I did not feel it normal for the baby to be so active with each contraction, and since she was Indian, they just squat to have babies we went to UAMS labor and delivery, April was a emergency C-section and here, it all happened so fast, the cord was looped around her neck. April was ok and so was her birth mother. At this time in our life, we thought Dee, birth mom and John Birth dad would get married and live happily ever after, we brought April home, our house hold was so excited, Hannah had her own baby, Alex totally cared for her too, everyone pitch in to help except Dee. Dee wanted to be with John, he had been in the program for 90 days and had done well, he left the program to be with Dee, they moved into a room, the size of a closet, the home had been condemned, on 14th and Cumberland. John’s mother lived in the back of it, not sure how with it being condemned? but they did. When April was a week old Dee left with her, our hearts were broke because we knew she would not be cared for, with in hours Dee called me to come and get her, we did. This went on for two weeks. My heart was broke for April, I did not know what to do, I could not keep her she was not mine, John was back on drugs and very abusive verbally and could be physically. I remember going to the church by my self, in the sanctuary and laying at the alter begging and crying to God to please do something, I was there for hours, felt like a nervous break down. I knew I had to protect my family from John threats but what about April, how did I protect her????? A lady called me and said she took April away from them, they she had a butcher knife on them and got April due to abuse, we went and got her, I said then I will never give her back, but you can not keep someone's baby even if suspected proven abuse, I had to take her home……..we had custody paper drawn up by our sweet friend Cindy Moody, I begged them to let us have temporary custody they said no…I had to leave her there, now if you wondering why I did not call DHS…..I did……a week past…Steve and I were in Hot Springs with Derol and Ann May, when John called drunk, I told him I could not help, which totally killed me inside, so I talked Steve into going by there and checking on them, when we did April had a bruised on her forehead and totally blind, the smell of paint thinner was so strong you could not breath, she was dirty, stunk and her tummy was so distended….they sold her wic/ formula and giving her onion water….John’s mother told him it would help her tummy not hurt and quit crying…..I was devastated….I could not leave her again…I said…let’s take her to Children’s Hospital, it was right down the street, to get her shots….Dee said ok, we did…they admitted her and she was in there for two weeks, during this time her vision came back, she began to respond normally, John and Dee “looked” like good parents, they had a room, food, laundry, TV………I looked like the crazy one, But in time true colors show….John came high and drunk to hospital…Dee would not stay with April in the hospital…then John and I got into it and we both got put on security alert and kicked out of hospital….the next day they discharged her to them……I do not know of a time in my life of the anguish I felt, it really almost did me in emotionally. I was distraught at what had happened, the next morning John called and was upset, the DHS woman had come to get April, he kicked her down some stairs and wanted us to meet him at Children's to take custody of April, Dee nor John wanted her in DHS, they both had been raised in DHS….we were there in seconds, went to Children's had a notary sign and we signed and they signed….I took her home NEVER to let her live-in hat abuse again…….
Some funny things about April….due to the fact she is the baby of five older brothers' and sister's, she had everything done for her, when we started kindergarten, I remember the teacher saying, she needs to fix her own cereal and pour her own milk she literally was our little princess, everyone who knew her was protective of her. One day when I had picked Jared up form school, April was maybe four, she was so mad at him, she looked straight in his face, and hollered YOU BABY! YOU BABY! YOU BABY!!! She normally did not have out burst of anger so it was really funny to us but not to her… when I washed my face, I would take toilet paper and make a headband around my face to keep hair form getting wet, one night April went into the den and said, JEEERRROD….mommy has toilet paper on her head!! I have this on video, her voice was country and had a draw on all her words…it was, I huuuuuugrrry moma…..her best friend was a little dog name Cooley when she was little, it was the neighbor’s dog, and I had got on to it for something, she said…do not be mean to Cooley, he is my best friend!!
So many wonderful memories of you growing up April, into a beautiful young woman…….when April was 19 months old, her birth parents came back into our life they wanted her back….Dee was pregnant at the time, they moved to Conway, still on drugs, no jobs and unfit…….at that time I said no, we went to court, not once but three times, the Judge gave them time to prove them self worthy to be a parent. John had threaten to kill us and I had it on tape and he was arrested, he came to court in his jail clothes, Dee had Matthew who was four months old now on her lap. I felt as if her life was swinging in the balance of heaven and hell, although God had told me she was ours and gave me so many scriptures, I was totally sick to my stomach…..I will NEVER forget when Judge Robin Mays had me on the stand ask looked me in the eyes, ask me why I wanted to adopt April……I begged and cried for April’s life……..my children knew her as their sister, we were a family and had been for 19 months, April had not known that life anymore and I would rather die then her have to go back to that……I meant it…the Judge had to take a recess because she started crying…..when Dee got on the stand, she said she would like to try being April’s mother…….the Judge and the Oklahoma Indian Tribe terminated the rights of John and Dee…..my heart was over joyed, we immediately adopted her………….had a major party, for years we did her birthday in August……due to her adoption date plus it was summer and more children could come to swim party’s April I have always told you how special you are, that I did not have a choice in the other children but I did in you and I chose you to be my little girl, I would give my life for you, God chose me and daddy to be your parents, it is a miracle to ever terminate a parents rights, Kay McCloud was our attorney and yours was Mr. Peters, they fought for your freedom, we fought for it….but most of all God fought for it……..I know meeting Dee and Matthew later in life had been hard, I am thankful for Dee, without her I would not have you, I am thankful you found it in your heart to forgive them, your heart is so big with forgiveness, never sell your self short, your life has a purpose and a meaning, God has plans for you, sometimes it has been hard for you, but you have over come, I pray God will open your eyes to the Hope of His calling in your life……………..I love love love you baby girl and would go to hell and back for you, but most of all God loves you and knows you, he will always be there for you, you are His not mine, always have been, always will be!