Luca Trapanese adopted Alba when she was just 13 days old.
In 2017, a 41-year-old man from Italy adopted his daughter Alba, when she was just a few weeks old. Trapanese is a gay and single man and Alba has Down syndrome. Trapanese got a call from an adoption agency to tell him that he had been matched with a newborn girl who was rejected by 20 other families. But Trapanese wasn't going to turn away. “When I first held her in my arms, I was overcome with joy,” he recalled, according to My Modern Met. “I felt she was my daughter straight away.”
The doting dad from Naples lives in an area where adoption policies were extremely strict. “I was told that I’d only be given a child with an illness, a severe disability, or with behavioral problems,” he explained. “I was absolutely OK with that.” Trapanese lost his best friend to cancer at just 14 years old, so he always knew how challenging it was to live with an illness or disability.
Speaking to BBC, Luca said, "When I was 14, my best friend Diego discovered he had terminal cancer. When I found out about it, I decided to never leave his side. I went to the hospital with him, I helped him with his homework, and I would just always be there for him when he needed me." Luca continued, "His parents had to work, so most of the time, it was just the two of us. I stayed with him all throughout this terribly sad, painful, experience right up to the very end. Even though we were just kids at the time, we were both very aware of the tragic situation. Diego was my best friend and I would do anything to help him. Diego's death left me with a profound awareness of what living with an illness meant. That's why I started volunteering with a church in Naples to help critically ill people and kids with disabilities." The man, now in his early 40s, eventually co-founded A Ruota Libera Onlus, a charity that offers adults with disabilities the opportunity to socialize, improve their skills, and be part of a community.
Trapanese had always wanted to start a family and although he and his long-time partner had broken up, he was eventually able to apply for adoption as a single dad at the beginning of 2017. When he met Alba he knew his life was about to change. “It was the first time I held a newborn baby. Before that moment, I had always been scared. But, when I first held Alba, I knew I was ready to be her dad,” said the young father, as per Bored Panda. Alba has grown up and the two share an incredible bond. Trapanese shared that his daughter “revolutionized his life and everything revolves around her. She brought me happiness and a sense of fulfillment. I wanted her to be my daughter. I am proud to be her dad.” He added, "Being a single dad is hard but I have friends whose partners work all day and they're struggling as well. I think that being a parent is hard, full stop. I can see a future for myself now. I'll spend the rest of my life with the child I love and we'll do so many amazing things together."