Christa Haring is a Research Assistant Professor at the University of South Florida and a new mom. Last year she adopted her son Carter who was born with Down syndrome and a cleft palate. To her, he’s perfect.
“People with Down syndrome are guileless,” she said.
Carter’s adoption story is full of twist and turns and a few miracles, too. In just over 60 hours, friends and family donated the $12, 000 needed for the cost of his adoption. 587 people rallied from all over the country to make it happen and ironically Christa was the last one to know.
“It just happened in a way we didn’t expect.” The second night we were in the hospital we had $12, 000 and we needed $18, 000,” she said. On the last night—the night the money was due, people were texting me things like, congratulations, congratulations! And I just sat there sobbing.
Perhaps is does take a village, as the saying goes. Christa has people around her giving unyielding support every day, including those she works with at USF.
“I think that Carter was never ever ever supposed to belong to one person, and I believe that with all my heart.” she said. “He has multiple moms and siblings. Carter’s story is just about people who saw something bigger than themselves and saw something better than all of us.”
Carter will have four surgeries over the next five years to help repair his cleft palate. Christa will have a whole army supporting his recovery after each operation. Just like a USF Bull, Carter is strong, feisty and above all else adored by his many fans.