Jacob was known for volunteering at an orphanage in his town. One day, a little girl asked him if he had come for her, but he had no idea what to say. Then he discovered why she said that, and Jacob cried for the first time in a while. Afterward, he made an important decision.
“It’s been a normal day, Mr. Murphy. But we got a new little girl, and she’s adorable. I’m sure she’ll be adopted soon,” one of the employees, Kara, at Sunshine Acres Children’s Home, told him. Jacob had been a volunteer at this orphanage in Mesa, Arizona for many years. He was adopted as a baby and went on to have a successful life.
Now he wanted to give back as much as possible, although he was not ready to be a father. In fact, Jacob didn’t know if he would ever be a father, especially with his girlfriend, Miriam. She had been nagging him about getting married soon but sneered whenever he talked about his volunteer work.
Jacob thought back to a conversation they had a few nights ago.
“I don’t know. If we have children, I don’t think I could ever adopt. I guess I want my own. Ugh…but I don’t want to be pregnant either,” Miriam stated with a disgusted look one night when Jacob invited her to the open house at the orphanage and asked about the future.
“Don’t get me wrong. I’m not ready to be a father, but I was adopted, Miriam. I have to give back,” Jacob replied, looking at his girlfriend in evident confusion as they ate dinner.
“I know you were adopted, Jacob. But that doesn’t mean you have to do it too. In any case, why are we talking about this? We have so much time still, and I would like to travel the world before thinking about that,” Miriam dismissed Jacob with a wave of her fork.
“You’re the one talking about marriage all the time,” Jacob countered, putting his cutlery on his plate and placing his hands on the table. He was even more confused now.
“Marriage doesn’t mean kids nowadays, Jacob. We can be a child-free couple and travel the world. We can do anything. I’m tired of this conversation. Talk to me about the charity gala,” Miriam deflected once again, and Jacob sighed, picking up his cutlery to resume eating while chatting about the event. Miriam didn’t like charity work. She just loved going to the galas and the parties.
“Mr. Murphy, are you listening to me?” Kara asked, waving her hands in front of his head and bringing Jacob back to the present.
“Yes, of course. Excuse me. I was thinking about something. What were you saying?” he wondered, fixing his tie in embarrassment.
“I was talking about the new girl here. Would you like to see her?” Kara asked again, but Jacob didn’t have time to reply. Just then, a little girl rushed towards them and grabbed Jacob’s leg unexpectedly. He looked down at her, not knowing how to act, while Kara laughed beside them.
“Dad! Did you come for me?” the girl uttered, raising her head to look at Jacob’s face and smiling. Jacob’s mouth dropped open in shock.
“No, Mia. He’s not your father,” Kara interjected, seeing how awkward Jacob was acting. But Mia didn’t listen to Kara at all.
She grabbed Jacob’s hand and started leading him to a room at the orphanage where they kept toys and school supplies. “Come with me, Dad! I made a picture of us. Sit! Sit!” Mia demanded and sat down on the floor next to a kid’s drawing table. Jacob sat down, indulging the girl, and she pushed her drawings towards him.
Then she began to explain who the stick figures on the paper were. “This is you, and this is me! This is our house in the country. We have MANY animals! Like a chicken! And a dog! A big dog! There’s the sun…,” Mia rambled on, taking another paper and adding more stuff to it.
Jacob finally smiled at the girl. She looked so happy. He asked her a few random questions about her drawing. But then, he got a bit more serious. “Mia, why do you think I’m the man in the picture?”
“Because my mom told me so. Mommy was very sick, but she said I should go with the nice lady, and my father would find me soon,” Mia explained slowly in her tiny voice while she continued to draw. “Mommy said she couldn’t come with me. But she was right! You’re here! You came for me!”
The little girl looked at him with such hope on her face that Jacob couldn’t say anything. But he nodded and told her to wait there a second. He stood up from the floor and walked a few steps away from her, so she wouldn’t see him choke up. He didn’t want anyone at the orphanage to see him like this, but tears just fell out.
Kara had gone off somewhere when Mia distracted Jacob, but she returned and saw his pained face. “Mr. Murphy, I’m sorry,” she apologized and started to turn away. But Jacob stopped her because they needed to have a chat.
“Mia’s mother died?” he wondered, drying his tears with his personal handkerchief.
“Yes, sir. All the details are on her file. Mia’s mother was terminally ill. She died in the hospital. There’s no record of any man in her life. There’s no father on her birth certificate. I don’t know why she thinks you’re her dad,” Kara answered, lifting her hands and shrugging.
“I know why,” Jacob said and cleared his throat. “It’s because I am. Let’s get the paperwork going. I’m taking that girl home if you guys allow it.”
It was an impulsive decision, but Jacob didn’t want to leave Mia alone in that orphanage a second longer. He might not be ready to become a father, but fate had intervened.
After speaking to some of her superiors, Kara told Jacob that it would take a few days and a home inspection before he could take Mia home, but she was not worried. Everyone at the orphanage knew him already, and Kara was sure it would be approved.
The only one who didn’t approve was Miriam. She threw a massive fit when Jacob told her about it that night. “YOU CAN’T DO THIS TO ME! We’re together! We’re supposed to make these decisions together! It’s the child or me! CHOOSE!” Miriam screamed, waving her hands hysterically and pacing all over their bedroom.
Jacob crossed his arms and smiled because he had never been given an easier choice. “I choose her. Get out of my house. We’re over. I never liked your attitude towards my money or how you always wanted to have the final word,” he said and exited their bedroom to give her time to pack.
When she finally dragged her bags outside, Miriam told him he would probably be begging for her back soon. Jacob chuckled and muttered, “Not a chance,” closing the door in her face. He looked back at his house and breathed deeply, relishing his freedom.
A week later, Mia moved in with him, and they became a family. I guess you’re never ready to be a father until it just happens, Jacob marveled while showing Mia her new bedroom, which he had remodeled as quickly as possible.
Jacob continued to volunteer for the orphanage, helping many kids and sponsoring those that had yet to be adopted. Eventually, he and Kara started dating and got married when Mia was in her teens.
What can we learn from this story?
Some impulsive decisions can be the best you’ll ever make. Jacob decided to adopt Mia in a split second and broke up with his girlfriend unexpectedly too. He never regretted it.
People have a way of showing you who they are, so you have to pay attention. Jacob refused to see the red flags about Miriam at first. But his impulsive decision made everything clear in the end.
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