You can be the hero of your own story. I spent 13 years of my childhood in foster care and overcoming great adversity. I wrote “I Wanna Be A Kid” when I was thirty years old. My wife and I had been married for seven years at that point, and decided we wanted to have a child. This was a huge deal and a big step for me. Before we were married we discussed the possibility of not having children.
I was a product of a messed up relationship and therefore had a messed up childhood. I was reluctant to bring any more children into this evil and cruel world. When we decided to have a child, she was pregnant within a month. I was shocked and grew very scared wondering what kind of father I was going to be. I felt unworthy to take care of a baby angel. I was facing a flood of emotions and bad memories. I could feel the little foster kid inside me beginning to cry and be fearful. I felt vulnerable.
I decided to write this song to my biological mom, to show her that I can be a winner, and that nobody was going to stop me from soaring in my life. This song has been an inspiration to many. This is my anthem. Its message is that if I can make it in life, then anybody can make it. I have been questioned about the meaning of the chorus, which says “Bunk to Bombay.” It means a bunk bed to somewhere far away. I was tired of bunk beds at the foster homes. I just wanted to escape.
May is National Foster Care Awareness month. May we all remember that there are lots of children in foster care that need love, a sense of belonging and security. These resilient children didn’t ask to be put in foster care. If you will listen to them, help them believe in their own self worth and plant seeds of love within them, you just might be that person that lights up their life with dreams and hope. They are grieving and have suffered so much…remember with the right perspective, you can make a difference!
Watch motivational speaker Derek Clark’s ABC TV interview about his foster care story.