Andrew, a 12-year-old boy finally found happiness when his best friend became his brother following his adoption.
A warm and loving home is something many of us take for granted. Stories like these act as a gentle reminder of the fact that many children grow up in the absence of the same. Andrew was only 6 years old when the state terminated his parents' parental rights. In 2018, Kevin and Dominique Gill opened their Nashville home to the foster child, who was just 10, at the time. Dominique told TODAY, "Andrew has four siblings who were all adopted right away" Initially, Andrew was extremely reclusive and mostly kept to himself. “During his first week with us, he sat in his room with the door closed and looked at old pictures. He didn't want to talk."
Even with the rough start, the couple never gave up on him and were determined to provide him with a home that every child deserves. They realized that only patience and understanding can bring him out of the disturbing headspace.
Soon, things changed for the better when Joc, Kevin and Dominique's son, approached Andrew to see if he was willing to play video games with him. To his surprise, Andrew agreed, and there was no looking back since then. Pop-Tarts and Minecraft gave birth to a new happy friendship between the two, and soon, Andrew was no more the sad and cloistered kid that he used to be. "We had a lot of stuff in common," Andrew told WBIR Channel 10.
The couple had no plans to adopt, all they wanted was to foster as many kids as possible. However, after Andrew's second adoption failed to materialize, Kevin and Dominique saw it as a sign from god and decided to keep him forever. Dominique said, "Our mindset was we'd help him until he found his forever home. But after the second adoption didn't work out, I realized God put Andrew in our lives for a reason."
On May 2020, the couple decided to make a grand gesture, which would mark his official entry into the family. Molly Parker, Youth Villages Counsellor, approached Andrew and asked him if he wanted to go for a walk. Little did he know that what looked like a regular walk was the journey toward a happy future. On the walk, Andrew saw the Gills and other family friends whom he knew from his time in the house. When the family popped the question, Andrew couldn't help but cry and Joc even wore a T-shirt that read, "Will you be my brother?" According to WBIR, Andrew accepted their proposal with a "yeah" and his new parents gave him a t-shirt that said "Yes" on the front.
“From the beginning, Andrew has always said, ‘Thank you for accepting me,’ ‘Thank you for not giving up on me,’” said Dominique. However, the family still gets stared at in public. She shared, "Because Andrew is white and we're Black, people will stare at us. They're confused." But she said it doesn't matter to her or their family. "Love doesn’t have a color. (Andrew) is our son just like Joc is our son," Dominique said. "He’s a part of us.”
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