My wife, Fatima, and I had always wanted to adopt a child. We hoped to provide an opportunity to help better the life of an orphan child. It was also important to us that we adopt from a Muslim country. We learned about the process of adopting from Morocco from a friend who had already adopted from there. We started the adoption process in the Spring of 2015, and at the beginning of May 2016 we brought Karim home with us.
The process of adoption was filled with hope and fear. My greatest fear was that we would do everything on our end to adopt a child, but at the last minute, something would happen and we wouldn’t be able to do it. Throughout the adoption process, I was anxious about it. I was on pins and needles until the day we got the visa to bring Karim home. It was my greatest hope that we would be blessed with a little boy who would enrich our lives. Our son, Karim, has fulfilled that hope and so much more.
The day I met Karim for the first time I was nervous and I didn’t know what to expect. The orphanage has a family room where parents meet their child for the first time. We walked into the family room where there were a couple of other families with their adopted children. Some of these families are now close friends of ours. Then, all of a sudden, someone brought Karim in, and placed him in Fatima’s arms. And I just couldn’t believe it. He didn’t cry, he didn’t look anxious, he looked like he knew he was where he belonged. He wasn’t fussy or anxious at all. It was as if he recognized his mother’s arms.
It is hard to describe the first moment that I saw my son. Feelings of love and disbelief that it was actually happening, combined with thankfulness to Allah (swt), and joy. I felt so lucky that I was being trusted with this gift. When I held Karim for the first time I was filled with awe that after such a long wait I’m actually getting to hold this baby in my arms. I remember putting him up against my cheek and just feeling the love.
Three years later we are a happy family. Both of the kids are so energetic and always want to play, so just trying to keep up with them is a challenge. Karim’s favorite person in the world is his sister, Iman. He copies everything she does. It is a source of joy and happiness for me, that he and his sister have this amazing loving bond. My greatest hope for Karim is that he grows up happy and knows how much we love him.