Vanessa and Bob Cavin were working at a group home for people with disabilities when they fell in love and got married. Fifteen years later, 9-year-old Benly was temporarily placed in the home where the Cavins were working.
Benly has multiple challenging conditions. Vanessa and Bob were immediately attracted to his magnetic personality and impressed with his ability to find joy in life after living with a biological family overwhelmed by his needs. “His family couldn’t help him in the way he needed help,” said Vanessa.
When a social worker called Vanessa to say she knew of a family interested in adopting Benly, Vanessa blurted out, “But my husband and I want to adopt him.”
“Benly needed someone to love, we wanted someone to love.”
Given their professions, friends assumed Bob and Vanessa wouldn’t have any problem parenting a special needs child. “It doesn’t matter how much you think you’re ready to be a parent or how much expertise you have in the field we were drained!” said Bob. “It’s so different when it’s your own kid.”
“It’s not always what you can handle, but what do you want to handle,” said Bob. “Benly just needed someone to love, we wanted someone to love, and now we get to share that love,” said Vanessa.