“Love won’t let go…”
By Shay Stinson, Junior Content Creator
I caught up with Lorene Harper this past Sunday evening as she was relaxing and preparing for the new week. Her college–sophomore daughter, Porshuna, had stopped by to do the usual college kid routine of grab-and-go of good food and any other small things she needed. Here’s how our conversation went:
Stinson: So, Mrs. Harper, we’re doing events all month for National Adoption Month and I’d like to ask for just a few moments of your time to chat about your adoption story … tell me about yourself.
Harper: Well, the first thing I want y’all to know is that I’ve been with Seraaj for over 19 years! I started with Seraaj when the Birmingham office was on 3rd Avenue South. I believe Porshuna was about two years old. I told Mr. Seraaj that and he remembers it well.
Stinson: Wow, Mrs. Harper, that’s amazing! You’ve been here basically since the beginning. We truly appreciate that. Tell me about your adopted children. What are they up to?
Harper: Well, Porshuna is in college. She is at Lawson State. She’s doing so good. She’s going for nursing and Jabahri is into all kinds of activities. He is involved in swimming and he participates in competitions. He’s also really into karate and he’s very active and smart.
Stinson: How has your biological family adapted to the whole process? Are they supportive?
Harper: Girl you can’t even see a difference. We’re all a very close family and they love the children, like they are a part of us now and we are a part of them. My kids all help each other. It’s like I birthed them all; I birthed them through love. I want y’all to know that’s how you do this. I adopted them because love wouldn’t let go. I fell in love with them and I couldn’t let go. I had to keep them.
Stinson: I’ll make sure I share that with everyone, “love won’t let go.” That’s a great concept, Mrs. Harper. Anything else you want me to know about your adoption?
Harper: They are both doing good. We bought Porshuna a car for school and we set up savings for her insurance payments. I did her just like my other daughter. We got her set up. She took pictures with Senator Doug Jones and she was prom queen.
I also spoke briefly with Porshuna. Here’s how that convo went:
Stinson: Hi Porshuna. I’ve heard a lot about you! What year are you in at college?
Porshuna: I’m technically a sophomore. I’m studying nursing.
Stinson: Porshuna, that’s a great field of study. Do you want to be an RN?
Porshuna: Well, this is just where I’m starting. I want to be an RN but ultimately I want to be a surgeon.
Stinson: Wow! That’s amazing and you absolutely can do it! Do you feel like you have the support you need as a college student?
Porshuna: Yes! I have a lot of support! My mom⏤I don’t call her my adopted mom anymore because she’s been my mom since I was two⏤my mom and the whole family supports me a lot. They got me set up at college. I live on campus and they are always here for whatever I need. That’s why I’m over here now getting some stuff.
Stinson: Porshuna, are you in contact with your biological family? Do you know them?
Porshuna: Yes, ma’am. I know all of them. My mom made sure I kept in contact with my biological family and my biological mother. We have done holidays and birthdays together. Keeping in contact with my biological family was very important to my mom. She made sure we knew where we came from so we wouldn’t have questions and not know them.
Stinson: That’s awesome! That family connection and knowing your roots is always important in personal growth. Porshuna, do you see yourself ever being an adoptive mom?
Porshuna: OMG, yes! I was just thinking about this the other day. At my school, we did some work with Grace House Ministries and a lot of work with veterans. There are a lot of kids that end up in foster care or being up for adoption from vets that pass away or who don’t have family support. I can definitely see myself adopting a child. I want to give a child the same chance I had to find a loving family that supports and takes care of them. I feel like I could be a great adoptive mom.
Porshuna spoke very confidently about the love and support she has received from her mom and all her extended family. She is a typical college student pressing forward to achieve all her goals. You can expect this young lady to one day give back all the love she has received as her life continues to unfold.. Harper and her love for children is a great example to many. She manages to provide as wonderful a life as possible for her active 12-year-old son and her college student.