‘What’s going on?’ She replied, ‘There’s a baby in the trash.’ My heart jumped to my throat.’: Man unexpectedly becomes single dad after taking in abandoned baby

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Finding Emilio

“My life is full of fun and crazy adventures, but nothing could have prepared me for finding a four-month-old infant, covered with fire ants, in a dumpster.

A little about me. I grew up in Haiti, but I go to school in America. Since being here, I get the opportunity to go home twice a year. Four years ago, I went home for Christmas to take presents to some children that I serve in an orphanage in Haiti. It was New Year’s Eve, and I was on my way to the orphanage to have a party for the kids that evening.

man with kids showing them love
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

As I was walking to the orphanage, a noise attracted my attention, and as I got closer, the noise got louder. I noticed a group of people making a commotion. As I approached them, I realized they were frantic and not celebratory as they normally would have been given it was the holidays. Immediately noticing something was off, I asked a panicked lady, ‘What is going on?’ She replied, ‘There is a baby in the trash that someone has abandoned.’ I couldn’t believe it. Curious, I pushed through the crowd to get a closer look. As I elevated my head to get a better look, I witnessed a crying baby boy on top of a large pile of trash, but there wasn’t a single soul doing something about it.

They didn’t want to touch the baby because they thought he may have been cursed, and it would bring harm to them if they touched him. Many were saying, ‘This baby has been here for hours.’ ‘This baby is evil; the devil is trying to get us.’ ‘I’m not going to touch that baby,’ and ‘I don’t know who put that baby there.’ (They were blinded by the intensity of the magic ritual, which is prevalent in Haiti.) The baby boy had no clothes on, and he was crying because he had fire ants crawling all over him and was in excruciating pain. My heart jumped to my throat.

I could hear the suffering, the pain, in his voice while crying. My heart was so heavy, my eyes were prickling with tears and I felt a deep wave of sadness. I could not believe what I saw. I proceeded with a nervous energy to get him out, all the while everyone was admonishing me not to touch the baby because they thought he was ‘cursed.’ This idea really disturbed me; how could they have eyes like me and yet cannot see? We were looking at the same thing, but I saw the opposite of what they saw. It was almost like God told me to pick him up, so I did!

There was no mother or father to be found. I picked him up and rushed to my mom’s house to clean him and clothe him. He had some fire ant bites and allergic reactions on him. I tried to take him to the hospital that night, but I couldn’t because they were already closed. Needless to say, it was a very long night for me.

son who was found in dumpster
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
dad holding his son that he found in a dumpster
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

Our Life Together

The next day, I took him to the doctor to get him checked out, feeling so grateful I was there to rescue this precious living soul; no one deserves that kind of suffering. Upon my arrival, I first had to ensure the baby was really abandoned. Next, I immediately took the required legal steps to protect him. Shortly after, I was asked to become his legal guardian.

I didn’t know what I was going to do. The idea of finding a baby or becoming a dad wasn’t my expectation at all. After all, the main reason I was back in Haiti was just to visit family and spend some time with kids in the orphanage. My spirit was troubled and kept me awake for days thinking about what to do.

dad holding son while he is laughing
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

Finally, courage took over, and I decided to stand up and take on this mission God was seemingly asking me to carry. I was so happy, even though I did not know how I was going to be able to take care of baby Emilio Angel (which is what I named him). I was not aware of what steps were required to be his legal guardian, which only added further to my stress and worry. I came to a point where I couldn’t even fly back to America for school because I didn’t have any money left. God was faithful to provide family and friends to support me during this ordeal. My mother and other family members have helped take care of Emilio while I am in school. Friends have provided clothing, monetary donations, and prayer along the way.

baby boy found in dumpster being fed
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
little boy found in dumpster facetiming his dad
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

It has not been easy by any means, but this major life-changing situation has been a blessing. I have always wanted to be part of something great. I saw this as an opportunity to increase my faith. I said to myself that I will say yes to God in every situation, even when it doesn’t seem to make sense. And I know for a fact you will never go wrong when you choose to love. It’s such a beautiful thing to feel loved and know that someone cares for you. I will love this boy and be there for him.

When I felt lost in my journey, I thought about this quote by Andy Stanley: ‘Your greatest contribution to the kingdom may not be something you do, but someone you raise.’ Ever since, I have been the caregiver, the provider for Emilio. I have worked really hard to make sure that he is taken good care of. Due to economic hardship, I decided to drop out of school to find a job to take care of him full-time. It was hard to be in school at the same time to provide for him. Still, I persevered and just trusted the process.

man taking a selfie with his kid who he found in a dumpster
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

Journey To Adoption

What I have learned through this journey is that sometimes we miss God’s opportunity to be a blessing because it is disguised as a problem. If you happen to be a religious person, be vigilant about what God is showing you. Sometimes blessings may come in strange packages; be wise enough and keep your spiritual eyes open. This journey has also taught me to always be prepared and expect the unexpected in life. This boy is certainly a gift, a gift that God entrusted me to show his greatness. I didn’t know what it may look like raising him, but it’s quite amazing to see him grow into such a sweet loving boy.

boarding pass showing son is special
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
man holding his son who was found in dumpster
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

Today, Emilio loves talking on the phone. He loves sport, he loves playing the guitar, and has said that he wants to be a musician. He just finished his second year of school and happens to be an exceptionally smart kid. My mom adores him and everyone around me loves him as well. The kids in the orphanage have so much admiration for him. He is simply a joy to be around.

son playing with a cell phome
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
man with kids showing them love
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
woman playing with baby who was found in dumpster
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
dad grandma and son smiling all together
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

No one should have to experience life alone. That is why I continue to carry the cross, no matter what. In the darkest moments of our lives, I believe God is there. That he will always come through. I truly believe that God has given me the opportunity to transform Emilio’s life from the TRASH where he was abandoned, to a wonderful TREASURE.

Your prayers, love, confidence, wisdom, and direction would be greatly appreciated as I embark on this next challenge: the process of adopting Emilio and making this precious child my legal son.”

dad and son smiling together
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial
boy found in dumpster smiling at dad
Courtesy of Jimmy Amisial

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Jimmy Amisial from Haiti. You can follow his journey on Instagram and Facebook. Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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