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The re-invigorating weekend I recently had? Happened only because we haven’t gotten a placement yet.

And it was a good one. Saturday night, dropped the kids off at Grandma’s and partied late with a good friend for his birthday.  Sunday was a day of relaxing and gardening, then dinner with another close couple and their kids.  Sooo good.  Made me feel like my life has never been better.

hamnmock372

So while I don’t really like to be self-centered (seriously! I don’t like the feeling), I’m starting to drift further and further from the rah-rah, go-get-em exuberance of our training.  The longer we’ve been licensed without a placement, I’m afraid the more I will resent the necessary changes that will take place once we’ve got our two new little ones.  Not a nice way to start a relationship.

Somehow, when I first went looking for blogs by foster parents a few months ago, I found, oh, maybe two.  So I thought I would be the perfect person to fill that gap.  After all, I was looking for them, so must lots of others.  Now it seems that there are actually dozens and dozens, and I have no idea how I missed them.

Therefore, I hope this is worth it for me.  Here are some ways I’ve noticed our (my family’s) situation to be different:

  1. We are only fostering, not adopting.  Adopting’s cool, no doubt.  But we’ve got our own three, and it feels right to be able to assist multiple families over time – at least, I think it will.
  2. I’m not an evangelical.
  3. I’m not loud or curse-y.
  4. I’m not a very good blogger.

I started this blog with ideals: to document our day-to-day events and journal my own analysis of it all.  I do this mostly for my own sake.  If a case manager asks when a behavior started, I can pinpoint it AND I can vent anonymously.

If only I had something to vent about.

Today, when I picked up my daughter from school,  the grounds were swarming with children in green.  So that must mean it’s St. Patrick’s Day.  That would make it the 17th.  So WHY did my cell phone just today deliver me a message from the 12TH!  A message from Lulu, who had a pair of brothers for us!!

Somehow, just an hour or so after calling me about the 3- and 11- year old siblings, Lulu called back.  I was probably picking up at school, but I don’t understand why my cell didn’t ring.  Yargh.  FRUSTRATING!  (Seriously, I couldn’t even find the call in the call log.)

I emailed Lulu to tell her in the future, don’t count on me getting cell messages right away – because this does happen a lot.   I should’ve also told her to leave messages on our home answering machine, duh.  So now I have motivation anew to switch cell phone providers.

As for the brothers, all Lulu could tell me was that a plan had been put in place for them.  I guess I hope it works out for them… grumble grumble

Well, it’s back to waiting.

Before our licensing was finished, I compared my feelings to the feelings I had during the last weeks of my pregnancies: nervous, excited, in a hurry to begin but also enjoying the blissful ignorance of the present.

But now, with our license in hand for more than two weeks!, I am feeling more like I did when I was past due: angry, annoyed, impatient.  Unfortunately, this circumstance also involves a paralyzing inability to plan for the future.  Should I volunteer to help out in my son’s preschool class next week? No…we might get a placement before then.  Could we go to a show in a few weeks?  Probably not, but then again, I’ve been putting things off and declining events since January in anticipation of our licensing!  I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised.  This is a state-government agency, one not known for its swiftness.

So until P-day, I rush to answer every phone call between 9 and 5 M-F (it might be Lulu), I never go anywhere without my cell (she calls it second), and I try to evaluate every situation for my preparedness (how would I handle this if I had two extra children who didn’t trust me or feel any loyalty to me?).   Finally, I try as hard as I can, in spite of my impatience, to be grateful for the relative calm I enjoy now.

Finally, after almost two weeks since licensing, I got our first placement call.

Lulu, our licensing worker:

“Well, I’ve got a sibling group, but one of them is a little out of your age range.”

(It would help to note that our age range is 2 – 6.)

Lulu: “The little girl is 3.”

Me: “Awww…”

Lulu: “And the boy is 11.”

Me: “Oh.”

Yeah, well, that sort of sealed the deal.  She did a little more talking, but I’m not sure what she could have said to convince me to take them.   Really, what was she thinking? Really really, she was probably desperate.

Oh man, what if that poor kid has to go to a group home now because there are no other placements that will take him? Wouldn’t we be better than a group home?  And then his sister wouldn’t be separated from him.  Plus, there are lots of boys that age in our neighborhood.  Great, now I feel like the jerk of the year.

But I could rationalize all day, and I probably will, on why he and his sister should be with us, and it still won’t change that fundamental fact that we just don’t know his past and how his behavior could affect our current children.   And our family right now always has to come first.  It’s best for us, and best for any children placed with us.  And because every person we talked to during training advised us not to take foster children older than our own, our(my) decision will be No.

So, I’m sorry, little girl and big brother.  I hope you get a foster family that fits with you and you with them.  I pray that your mom kicks the habit and you are speedily reunited with her.  I pray you have the security and love that all children deserve.