Tuesday, April 24, 2012
I am a planner by nature, I like to make lists, shop out of season, and plan ahead. This is a great ability to have when you are trying to run a family the size of mine however not so great in the world of foster care. I have learned to let go of alot. I would not say that I am a control freak, I just like to be organized and know what's going on. And if you throw off my routine I have a hard time adjusting unless it works in my favor! Turtle's birthday is a little over a month away, I am pretty sure he will be here but are we ever really sure? Everything could change in a moments notice, or nothing could happen for awhile, we never really know. I want so badly to plan his first birthday party but the frugal (and self-protective) part of me won't let me buy decorations, or birthday gifts just yet. That is sooo hard! I was told there is court at the end of the month but wasn't given a specific date. I think that I really want to go just so I know what the heck is happening with his case and get a better idea of how long we get to love on him. I would love to take him on vacation with us in early June, I know we would be given permission I just don't know if he will still be with us then. That part is really hard for me, not only the lack of planning but I don't even want to let myself imagine doing all the fun things together and then be heart broken if he's not a part of it. For now I just have to try to put it out of my mind and hopefully in the next few weeks we will have a better idea of what's to come.
Saturday, April 21, 2012
Yesterday we had an appointment with Turtle's pediatrician. I purposely drove 45 minutes out of my way so that we could visit with the pediatrician that he has seen since birth. It was so worth it. As foster moms we don't usually get to know much if any medical history about our kiddos. It was super important for us to see this particular doctor since she had a huge role in him being court ordered to be removed from his former foster home. Everyone in the office commented on how happy he was, that they had never seen him laugh, or talk that he was usually in a stroller crying. So sad that my boy wasn't getting loved on as much as he deserved. The pediatrician filled me in on some of the issues and I could tell she was very glad and somewhat relieved to see that she did the right thing, she even expressed how hard it was to get involved. I am so, so glad that there are good doctors out there who will fight for these kids too, she is awesome! My little Turtle is changing like crazy, still working on clapping, his fine motor skills are a little lacking but he's gonna do it , I promise! He is a super happy baby, loves all the attention he is getting, loves to laugh, and loves to yell! He definitely wants everyone to know that he is in the room! We are so blessed to be able to love on him, I love seeing how much these babies change in just the first few days of having them in our home. It just goes to show what a whole lotta love and attention will do!
Friday, April 20, 2012
I have no shame in the fact that I use WIC for my foster babies. At least while they are on formula it is a huge help. I would rather spend my money on clothes and toys and spoiling them silly anyways. The other day I had an appointment set up for Turtle but found out that the former foster mom had already gotten checks for April so unless she returned the checks to WIC or gave us the formula then we were out of luck. The lady at our WIC office really went out of her way to help us and I could tell she felt really bad that she couldn't do anything for us. I assured her it wasn't a big deal, I can buy him formula and food. She went all the way to the state level trying to help! Apparently former foster mom already used the checks for the month and told the state WIC supervisor that Turtle had already gone through his formula. 7 cans in 2 weeks, I highly doubt that, I don't think he even goes through one entire can in a week. I really could care less about it, I am just really upset that someone involved in foster care who is supposed to be doing the absolute best for these kids can be like that. The formula is his, not hers. When Drummer left I sent all his food and the 9 brand new outfits that my agency had given him. The way I see it, it belongs to him not me. I guess not everyone is in foster care for the right reasons.
You know you're a foster parent when you dream about a placement call! Never before in my life have I dreamed about foster care, now I am dreaming that I received a call for a 17 month old little girl. I actually considered it and was trying to figure out how to juggle the 2 boys and now her. So crazy!
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
I just emailed our placement coordinator asking if I could take Drummer. I haven't even asked my husband! I know it won't happen, we are only licensed for one but I had to at least ask. It would be crazy fun to have both little boys here. What if they say yes? It won't happen but at least I tried.
Earlier as I was sitting here catching up on my blog posts my phone rang, the caller ID showed blank, blank State govt. Having got that call a few times I knew it was CP$. Drummers CW was calling with a problem, apparently the new foster mom was going to have to put him in day care alot more than she expected and wanted me to take him back. ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!! My heart sank at that moment, I wanted to cry but held it together long enough to let her know this is why I was so adamant that he not be moved, but nobody would listen to ME! We would have kept him in a heartbeat but I already have a new placement and I won't disrupt him. She basically said thanks and hung up. That's when I cried. I love that little boy, he will be a part of me forever. I tried so hard to make sure that the new foster mom was aware of the amount of care that he needed. CP$ just doesn't care. They want siblings together which I fully support but only if it is for the best interest of every child. I would have set up visitations with his sister on my own time and expense. I would have done everything possible to help everyone involved, it makes me so mad. I am not okay with the fact that he may be moved again but I am good with my decision not to move one for the other. Part of me wants to call up my agency and ask if there is anyway I can take them both but I know I can't. I am hurting for me, for him, and for all the kids out there disrupted because of somebody else's agenda. Foster care sucks!
When Drummer came to us it was seriously love at first sight, I was all in. I have to say that I really hate babysitting other people's kids. I have tried it and I just don't like it. The one thing I was worried about when it came to fostering is if I would feel like I was babysitting someone else's kids. I was relieved to find out that no, it is not that way at all. I was amazed to find out just how quickly you can fall in love with a child you don't even know, I felt fiercely protective of him. When Turtle came on Friday, it wasn't quite the same. For the first 2 days I thought there is something seriously wrong with this kid, there is alot that he should be doing by now that he's not. I wish I would remember to take a picture the day that these kids come into our home. It is amazing how much they change in just a few short days, Turtle looks like a completely different child. Maybe he was just dazed and confused, I don't know but he is definitely not the same little boy that came through my front door on Friday. It took a few days but by Monday I was completely in love! It took a few days to figure him out, and we are still working on getting him up to speed, I will seriously throw a party when he claps for the first time! He isn't crawling yet but he gets up on all fours and rocks back and forth like a rock star, he's gonna do it just in his own time. I love cheering him on and giving him all the attention he can handle! I have to admit, it is really nice that he sleeps through the night! I originally planned on taking in newborn to 12 months and now I just don't know if I could do the newborn thing again. Drummer required alot of time that with 8 kids I just don't know if I have the energy for. Turtle has been a dream, he is on a pretty good schedule and loves his naps! I am looking forward to seeing his case through to the end, whatever that may be. My heart truly is in fostering, I want to see these kids go home or be adopted by a forever family. I don't know how long Turtle will be with us but we are going to do BIG things together!
The night before Drummer left my little girl was really sick, so sick that I ended up taking her to the ER. I'm not gonna lie, a part of me was really glad for the distraction. As soon as we had a date to move Drummer I could feel myself pulling away from him. I was a little more "bothered" by having to care for a baby, and just didn't feel the same. I don't know if this is common or not but I think it was my minds way of surviving the emotional trauma. We spent a good couple of hours at the ER, poor baby had pneumonia and strep throat. By the time we got home Drummer was asleep and I finished getting things together for his move. After getting him settled with the new foster mom I dragged my poor daughter out shopping with me! Not the best mommy of the day but at least she could sit in the cart and didn't have to walk! Not even 2 hours later as we are in Wal*art picking up a few last minute things for my sons birthday tomorrow my phone rings. I honestly never hear my cell phone, it drives my husband crazy but seriously I don't use it alot so it's usually buried in my purse or diaper bag! Today it was in my pocket and while on my way to check out I get a call from CP$ asking if I would take a 10 month old little boy. I asked alot of questions then agreed to talk with the CW. The CW calls about 5 minutes later and fills me in on some of the details, apparently a judge ordered him removed from his current foster home today. Ok, well I guess I can do this.I called my hubby and said "don't be shocked but we are taking another baby!" Good thing I was already at the store, I was able to grab what we needed then rush home to clean my house! I was really looking forward to the weekend baby free too, we were going to be crazy busy with baseball games, baseball pictures, my sons birthday and taking care of my sick little girl. Looking back maybe I should have said no but so far I haven't learned how to do that and I am very glad I didn't because I think I am in love with this little guy but I think a day or two to grieve a little and recharge would have been good for all of us. My kids are so awesome, I know they were sad saying goodbye to Drummer so when they walked in Friday after school and I said "guess what?" they were so excited! Friday night could have been very overwhelming but somehow I held it all together. Heavenly Father is definitely giving me the strength to do what I need to do to help these sweet babies. I don't regret for one minute our decision to foster. I will go through the heartache over and over again for the opportunity to give these kids the love and safety that they deserve.
I have learned so many lessons these last few weeks that I will have to devote a post to just that, lessons learned. The first is never, ever, agree to help transfer your foster child to a new placement. I honestly thought I was doing what I was supposed to, being helpful and kind but I will file this one away as what not to do. The transfer went well and I am glad that I got a chance to meet and talk with the new foster mom but as I drove the 30 minutes to our meeting place I felt as if I was driving to my death. It was seriously a form of cruel and unusual punishment. I imagine if you've ever driven a pet to the pound or the vet to be put to sleep it felt a ot like that. It truly was awful and something I don't think I can go through again. The new mom is nice, grandmotherly and kind. I really don't think she is prepared for a baby, she didn't know how the car seat went in or that he needed to face backwards. She bought size 5 diapers because she was told he is 5 months old. Granted it's been awhile for her but really this isn't helping me. I emotionally said goodbye and immediately went for some retail therapy to get my mind off things, there was no way I could go home to an empty house to start putting baby things away. On my way home I called our placement coordinator to let her know that Drummer had left our home and that we were open for another placement. Silly me, I should have known better!
I really wish I was a better blogger! I have been so busy, it's amazing I even get to breathe! So much has happened the last few weeks, I wish I had blogged as we went along but this is as good as it is going to get I'm afraid. I love the foster blog world, I have gained so much by reading what other foster moms are doing and what to expect now that we've entered into this crazy world we call foster care. So to catch up, little Drummer has moved on and we have a new little boy we'll call Turtle. I wish it were that simple buy it's been hard. Last week I finally met with Drummer's new CW, I was all prepared with 2 doctors notes saying it was inadvisable to move him at this time to a place where he would be in daycare. I was confident I could plead my case and in the end do what was best for him. After my little spiel, CW calmly says "we'd like to move him this week." The foster mom who has his sister apparently only works part time and Drummer would only be in day care maybe once a week. Why couldn't anyone say that up front? I have fought for 3 weeks for this little boy for no reason. I am relieved that he won't need to be in day care but frustrated by everyone involved. Now that we have a date set for transferring him on Friday, I am so sad. I knew it would be hard but this is brutal! It is amazing how quickly you become attached to these kids. I know I did the absolute best for him, I can't dwell on him leaving but rather focus on hopefully the good that came from him being here in our home. I have so much to say I will have to continue the saga in another post! More to come.........