In My Own Words by Lillybelle Keating

There is a strength of hearing children and young people’s voices – step into the mind of 11-year-old Lillybelle, as she reflects back on her adoption journey. We hope that her story will bring comfort to children on their own journey.

In my Own Words - book coverThis time last year, local 11-year-old Lillybelle wrote a book about being adopted, called In My Own Words.

“I’ve written a book, just to explain how it feels to be adopted. I would say it’s about my life about how I felt during adoption.

“It felt at first nervous, but it gets better as time goes on. I think it’s important for other people, like adopted to children, to read my book because then they won’t be too scared about going to a new family – they’ll feel a bit nervous and just a little bit scared of course, because everyone does. But there’s no need to worry, because you’re with a happy safe home and family.

“My favourite part is near the end where it says “life gets good” because it actually does. Adoption is great because you get to have a bigger family and you get more love, and you get more care for yourself, and you get to live a happy great life. I just enjoy my new family.”

Words from Lillybelle’s book 📚

I wanted to tell you a little bit more about what I mean when I say I felt like I was in a dream.

When I first came home nothing felt very real. I didn’t feel bad or good. I felt nervous excited. The kind of feeling that makes your tummy feel funny and your head feel full. My brain found it hard to rest but also when I rested my mind I felt like I wasn’t there. Like I wasn’t real.

It’s 6 years later and I think I felt that way for a couple of them. I did still have lots of good times between them but that feeling comes and goes. Now I’m older I can talk about it but before that I would draw and write. It helped a bit but being able to talk and have people listen and understand helps most.

If you have children like me who are fostered or adopted then maybe they might be feeling a bit like that too. Or other ways that don’t feel good for them. Even though they might be so happy to have a new family it is a scary thing that is happening to them and they don’t have a choice.

Be kind, talk about their feelings and try to understand. I love my family and I am sure that they will too ✌️

We wish Lillybelle huge success with her book and hope it will support and enable families, friends, professionals, classrooms and communities to discuss fostering and adoption in an open and informed way.

Podcast and website

Debbie Bright is joined by Lillybelle, and her mum Lizzy for the You Can Adopt podcast. You can find it on Lillybelle’s website.

Lillybelle and Debbie talk about how it’s important to Lillybelle to stay in contact with her birth family and her foster family, and about the emotional connection with her adoptive family. Debbie asks her some difficult questions and they talk about her memories.

Adoption Through a Child’s Eyes – podcast