The Halloran-O'Brien Family Sept 4, 2019 16:39:09 GMT -8
Post by starletinwaiting on Sept 4, 2019 16:39:09 GMT -8
Hey! Name's Tracey James Halloran-O'Brien (5/28/1982). I'm the younger cousin of Brian and Eric McFarland. My husband, Brennan, and I moved here when his college friend Anastasia and her husband relocated here. Our youngest daughters and theirs have been best friends since birth, practically.
Brennan Avery Harlan-O'Brien (6/21/1988) and I met by happenstance at a college graduation. My younger sister happened to be in the same graduating class as a lot of his friends he'd started college with. He had to go on medical leave, so he ended up graduating a couple years later and was there to support his friends more than anything.
At the time, I was actually dating someone, so Bren and I hit it off as friends first. But a year later when my ex dumped me shortly after he proposed, Bren was there for me. He listened to me rant and moan and groan. He put up with a lot, considering he's seven years younger than me and was only twenty-four at the time. I made... advances. Before I was even sure that Bren was gay. Fortunately, he slowed me down when I wanted to go too fast. Even still, we ended up getting married after less than two years dating.
As soon as he graduated, not long after we officially tied the knot, Brennan suggested we adopt. The guy's always loved kids. His words. He got a minor in child development, so I'm liable to take his word on the subject. He said that he would stay at home to take care of the kids, allowing me to go off and continue to work. He knew how much I loved my job on the police force so I agreed. Naturally, I thought it would take some time, but he actually had someone in mind. His mom worked at a crisis pregnancy center and this young girl, probably no older than fifteen or sixteen, came in, insisting that she couldn't keep the baby she was clearly already very pregnant with. Bren reached out to the girl and she willingly gave up her baby.
Which turned out to be twin girls. Nyla Jacqueline and Nydia Gertrude (7/2/2014). As we were still trying to figure out how to do this whole parenting thing, Brennan stayed in touch with Anastasia, who had one son and twin girls of her own to take care of. She gave us lots of advice, which naturally meant that Nyla and Nydia became almost inseparable from Anastasia's Lucy and Therese.
A year later, we took in a boy from off the streets, Ronan Oliver (3/12/1998). He'd run away from home with his younger brother when their parents kicked the brother out after coming out as gay. Unfortunately, they left home in the thick of winter and the brother got very sick and ended up dying. But Ronan's parents still refused to take him back, blaming their elder son for their younger son's death, despite having previously disowned the younger son. So we offered Ronan a home and when he turned eighteen he legally changed his name to Bonner-O'Brien, saying we were more like his family than his mom and dad at this point. We had to agree.
After we unofficially adopted Ronan, Brennan and I decided that we liked giving homes to the older kids in need. The younger kids were much more likely to be adopted, but the older kids needed homes and families just as much.
When we took in Ronan, we had already started adoption proceedings for another child, a girl of about fourteen. Devon Felicity (4/29/2001) had been in the system since birth. I met her one day when she came into the police station, sobbing and in a rage. She had witnessed as her foster father brutally assaulted her younger foster sister, only four years old. That girl has grown up a lot over the last four years, but she has stayed the same passionate, confident, self-assured old soul she was when we first met. Not a day goes by that I don't thank the stars or whatever God there may be that I met that little girl and convinced Bren to adopt her.
Shortly after Ronan came to live with us, we adopted a boy around the age Ronan's brother would have been. Murphy Jason (12/2/1999) and Ronan quickly hit it off, as we learned that Murphy had also had an older brother who was taking care of him before child protective services took him away. Murph's brother was only a couple years older than Ronan and had a very similar personality, according to Murphy. The two are basically as much brothers as they can get without being biologically related.
Almost two years ago, Brennan and I decided to adopt again. Another older child, this time we decided a girl would be good for the twins to have around. Diana Monique (10/31/2003) practically fell into our laps. Di was taken from her home after her parents were declared unfit to care for her. She was around seven at the time. She became severely depressed over the years and the last time she tried to take her own life, she called a hotline. Which Brennan happened to be working. He saved her life and formed an unbreakable bond with the girl. When she asked him to visit her in the hospital, he said yes. By the next day, he convinced me that we should adopt her.
To say that our family is unconventional is putting it lightly, but I don't think any of us would have it any other way. It makes us who we are. And who we are is pretty great.