Four siblings from Kansas had a rough childhood when they were abused and neglected by their biological parents. For all the years that they endured the abuse, they gained strength from each other.
Now that they are in the custody of the state, they knew that it was possible that they will go in separate homes. Alisia, Bradley, Cody, and Emma were put up for adoption. Adoption processes involving siblings usually end up splitting them. Those chances were high for these siblings. If they were separated, they will be heartbroken.
The kids were 17, 16, 15 and 11 at the time of adoption. They came up with the most likely scenario in their minds. Alisia and Emma may be adopted together, but their brothers, Bradley and Cody, could be sent somewhere else.
That could happen until the Watsons came.
Eric and Phyllis Watson from Gardner were foster parents and have potential to adopt. The adoption agency called them and they met the four siblings. The siblings had one wish: to stay together.
At first, the couple fosters one or two children at a time when they met the siblings. The couple revealed what made them decide to adopt the four kids.
“We were thinking one foster child at a time. Maybe two? We were not thinking four at once. The turning point for me was they were going to be split up and I didn’t want to see that,” Eric said.
“And when he woke up, he said, ‘We’re gonna take the kids. Eric had thought things over, and couldn’t imagine separating the siblings,” Eric’s wife, Phyllis, revealed.
Their main concern is their finances. They are wary if they can support four kids because they have to prove it in court in case they want to adopt the kids. Eric and Phyllis both have full-time jobs and after crunching some numbers, they became confident. After all, all they want is for the siblings to stay together.
March 12 was a significant day for the four siblings. The courtroom was standing room only with friends, family, schoolmates and loved ones lining the walls. Judge Kathleen Sloan has been there all the way.
“I’m really excited,” Alisia said. “I’ve been looking forward to this day about two and a half years,” Emma said.
“I knew it would come one day,” Cody said.
“Now having this, I can’t express how much I appreciate just having a family, to be loved and be with a family,” Bradley said.
The adoption case has become very special to District Judge Kathleen Sloan who was brought to tears by the situation of the four kids and the selfless love of the Watsons.
“Welcome to the very best hearing that I get to have in this courtroom. The very best hearing that any judge gets to have in this entire courthouse, the very best hearing that any judge gets to have in the entire state of Kansas, the very best hearing that any judge gets to have in the entire United States of America,” Sloan said.
“There is nothing better than an adoption; in part, because you all came in here happy and I get to let you leave happier,” she added.
The original grandmother of the four kids, Susan Bustamente, was very grateful that the children are now in the loving arms of their new set of parents. The four siblings were the victim of a couple with substance abuse and they were neglected by their biological parents.
This case gave hope to other children in the system that they will soon find a warm and loving home that will accept them.
The four children could never be happier. Now, they are Watsons – a family of six.