For Sonya

Philadelphia Flower ShowI wasn’t paying much attention.

My friend Donna was being pretty damn persistent, posting incessantly about this on Facebook. She’s that way, my friend Donna is. Doesn’t give up easily, if ever. She’s scrappy, passionate. A fighter for her girl and children’s rights. She’s as Irish as you can get, the real deal.

I was tuning her latest mission out and I knew it.

I’ve known Donna and her husband since our college days. On several occasions, I’ve shared their heartbreaking adoption story about Baby G here on the blog, with their permission. Their story continues as it has for what has become nearly 2.5 years now: without answers and without justice, with empty homes and empty hearts.

I think that just maybe, just maybe, a small part of me didn’t want to hear this. I didn’t have the strength of heart to fortify myself to get emotionally involved. 

And I sure didn’t want to believe it was possible that in this country, a 9 year old girl named Sonya Hodgin could be taken from the loving family in Tennessee that adopted her when she was 3 years old and – with two hours notice – be sent to live in Nebraska with her biological father who she had never met. 

Because he had a violent criminal past and had been in jail.

Sonya’s first night with her biological father was spent in a motel room.

Think about that for a minute.

Think about when you were 9 years old.

Think about your daughter or your niece or your granddaughter or someone else you love who is or once was 9 years old.

Maybe that’s why you haven’t heard about this story yet. Maybe that’s why I wasn’t paying attention. It’s easier to stay silent than to invite the horrid thoughts, to take on the opposing views that think this is all perfectly fine and that blood is thicker than water. (Make no mistake, this is a hell of a controversial case and there are definitely folks who think that way).

But this is a 9 year old girl we’re talking about, which begs the question to be asked:

What the hell kind of country are we that thinks it’s OK to take a 9 year old girl from the only family and home she’s ever known – with five minutes to say goodbye – and allows her to spend the night in a motel room with a man she’s never met?

I’d like to say I hope I never find out.

But I just did.

To take action and learn more of Sonya’s story, including how you can help return Sonya to the only family she has ever known, click here.



Thanks for sharing this post!

2 thoughts on “For Sonya

  1. michelle

    Clearly there’s a lot left out of the adoption case. I don’t know the details, only what was in the news, but logic implies that it’s not this baffling case of giving an adoptive family two hours to pack. The adoption was overturned in 2009, about 4 or 5 years ago, depending on when it was overturned. The child was adopted at 3 years old. That would mean the adoption was overturned when the now 9 year old, was 4 or 5 years old. That is not 2 hours notice. It’s a bit like the Elian Gonzalez case, where the uncle’s family was angered that the government sent in armed police, but had ignored the court rulings to return the child to his father.

  2. Lisa Weinstein

    Melissa, this is heart breaking. I really don’t understand our system of justice. Bob and I had considered becoming foster parents, but I was so afraid I’d fall in love with a child who would be yanked out of my arms. Thank you for helping to raise awareness for Sonya.

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