I am sure that the experience that most of us have with hosting an exchange student makes an impact in our lives, one that we never knew that needed to be filled. And as most parents, we are biased in believing that our kids, somehow, have surpassed all other kids and must be some sort of "super-kid" with super powers. Well, I am no different when it comes to my natural children and my newly found family.
We have a large family here is Northern California. There are six of us. My husband works long hours and is often away from home. Some would think that having six of us was a lot to have in one home but not me!! So we added 2 more! Two choices that I will never regret having made. Having Farheen Yousuf from Pakistan and Michael Hempelmann from Germany makes us feel complete. I couldn't have ordered a better fit from a catalog had I had tried. Where have these kids been all my life!!!
We like to sing 'we have the whole world, in our house" because we really do! One day with all our friends and extended family, we have every continent here except for Australia! Imagine that!
Both of our new children are very different from each other and yet get along like you wouldn't believe. I doubt you would also question me when I say we have had no issue, disagreements, or problems in any way what so ever. I have hosted several times in the past and this experience has been a perfect utopia!
I would love to give credit to us for them being such great kids, but obviously that isn't where credit is due. Farheen's and Michael's parents have done a wonderful job raising these two young adults and should be extremely proud of them! Such successful parents they are! And to trust us with helping to polish these future leaders of our world is remarkable!
Christmas is just around the corner and soon they will be back at home with their families and my little birdies will have flown our nest! Will we ever be able to replace them? NO WAY!!!! Will we try? NO WAY!!! But we will always know that we have children all over the world and as they think that we have made such an impact on their lives, they will never truly know the impact they have made on our lives!!
Tina, John, Michael, Zachary, Elijah and Angela Simoes