When I first met Trevor, he peacefully stared up at me from his crib with his beautiful brown eyes from underneath his matching curly hair. Trevor and his three older sisters were born with heroin addictions. Immediately following his birth, his sisters were adopted and he entered into foster care.
Trevor’s rough beginning led to delays in his development. Even at two years-old, he had trouble walking and talking. Trevor needed the help of occupational and speech therapists, in addition to his foster parents and maternal grandmother, to see minor achievements in his verbal and physical abilities.
Every week, I took Trevor to see his maternal grandmother so he could maintain his bond with his birth family. His foster parents were very supportive and built a positive relationship with his grandmother knowing it would strengthen Trevor’s growth and well-being. Trevor’s grandmother also knew the importance of her involvement and even made a point to attend church with the family every Sunday.
One day, Trevor and I headed over for a visit and something special happened. I was playing the Jackson 5 in the car when I noticed Trevor dancing and clapping in his seat. A few minutes later, he began to hum and make sounds as if he wanted to sing. I had never seen him so alive.
After the trip, I told Trevor’s foster parents about his excitement over the music. They did not hesitate to order dozens of Jackson’s concert DVDs and CD’s. I even purchased Trevor a microphone and hat so he could perform along with the DVDs. In about a week, Trevor began to sing the words and had learned Jackson’s dance moves. Whenever I visited, he gladly put on a show for me. Within weeks, he began talking clearly and running around the house.
A few months later, Trevor’s foster parents officially adopted him and kept open ties with his maternal family so they could continue building their relationships. Today, Trevor is a handsome six year-old boy who still loves Michael Jackson. His grandmother continues to attend church with his family every Sunday.
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Written by: Llesenia Parrish, LSS/NCA Social Worker
Note: Trevor’s name has been changed to protect privacy.