Friday, May 10, 2013

Update #3

This is the last one, I promise!

Our licensing agency has some rules about the # of kids, bio and foster, under certain ages that you can have in your home at the same time. Since my daughter turned 12 in February I knew we would be able to take in another child (no more than 5 kids under age 12). I finally worked up the nerve to talk to my husband about my brilliant idea at a restaurant we always seem to go to when we have to discuss something foster related, not on purpose it just seems to work out this way! I know he was hesitant but we both agreed that when Turtle left and after we took a little break, then we could think about taking in siblings. When everything went wrong with Turtle's move I kind of resolved myself to knowing that we weren't going to get a break for awhile so what the heck why not take in another? Honestly it was a little more than that, it was a serious nagging feeling that just wouldn't go away. I knew (even if my husband didn't!) that we needed to accept another placement. While my husband was on a short business trip I scoured craigslist and found a beautiful crib for a steal so of course I had to go get it, you know just in case. I called our licensing worker to let her know we were ready to be put on the list. We were (ok, I was)  willing to accept a girl between 0-6 months. She assured me it could take a few weeks for a placement, so I faxed in our placement profile and went about my day. Literally 2 hours later at 5:00 on the dot, my agency called asking if we could take a 3 month old little girl. I of course said yes but I was freaking out! I had just finished confessing to my husband about buying the crib and even said, "don't worry, there won't be any little surprises when you come home!" How the heck was I going to explain this one? This all sounds so sneaky, but I promise I did not mean for it to all go down this way! If I have learned anything from our journey through fosterland it is to always expect the unexpected, that and leaning on my faith. I know God has a plan for each of his children, the timing of everything proves just that. I don't know why our little Bunny girl is supposed to be here but she is and we are loving (almost) every minute of it!

Update #2

Tuesday March 5th was to be the day. So many emotions leading up to this day, it is hard to be both happy and sad at the same time. Earlier in the week I had packed up all of Turtle's clothes and toys that he was taking with him and gave them to his mom. I didn't want to be doing all that on the actual day that he left. The last thing I wanted to do was say goodbye to him and then come home to an empty house and start putting away all the baby things, I knew I needed a distraction and what better way to do that than plan a family vacation to the happiest place on earth!  Honestly part of me was really looking forward to taking a break and packing and preparing a family of 9 to go on vacation was overwhelming in itself and definitely gave me something else to focus on. Turtle's adoptive mom was running late the morning she was to pick him up so we ran some last minute errands. When we got home there were 2 frantic messages an an email from his caseworker saying we couldn't move him! At this point I was so over all of this, we had said our goodbyes, everything of his had been moved, and honestly we were just done. I called my licensing agency who has been amazing in supporting and advocating for us, the director called the cps supervisor and ripped her a new one which made us feel awesome! Long story short, Turtle is still with us while we wait for his family to be certified to adopt. We are doing visits  back and forth, his family is taking him for longer stretches of time and not only when it's "convenient" for them. We have built a really great relationship with them and we are excited to watch not only Turtle, but his siblings grow up as well. This process has been emotionally draining. It is not easy sharing the boy you love knowing that one day he won't be yours at all. At times it has been messy and ugly and not at all fun but I absolutely love these kids that I get to call mine, even for a little while and  yes, I would do it all over again.

Update #1

Wow, things got crazy here for awhile. I need to be better about blogging but there's just not enough hours in the day! I want to try to remember as much as possible about our foster journey so bear with me as I do a few updates!

Towards the end of January we met with Turtle's case manager and she still hadn't started the red file process, I expressed my concerns that he really needs to be with his forever family as soon as possible. We love him to pieces but he deserves permanency. She assured us the process would be pretty quick and that we should expect to start transitioning him at the end of February. Even though I knew this would eventually happen it is still heart wrenching every time we get new news. Fast forward a couple of weeks and I get a voicemail from her saying that the family that has adopted his older sister and brother wanted to adopt Turtle! I was excited for him but concerned also because I was always told that they had been asked to take him when he was born and they didn't want to. We were asked if we could all meet together on Valentine's day and even though I had plans with my hubby it wasn't anything that couldn't be changed. Not very romantic sitting in CPS offices but hey, what do you do! The meeting went well, thank goodness my husband was with me. I did pretty good keeping my emotions in check but still it was an emotional day, I cried the whole way home! I am super happy for him and for his family, I really like them. They are completely different from us but they are kind and loving and definitely want to raise Turtle with his siblings. Honestly there is no better place for him to be. We worked out a transition plan and even though they aren't currently certified to adopt we were all reassured that there would be no problem moving him in right away. My husband had a business trip planned for the end of February so my only request was that we waited until he returned to officially move Turtle to their home. Transitions went really well, we started off slow and moved up to overnights. The emotions come and go but I am at peace and grateful that we've had time to build a relationship with his forever family and hopefully be a part of Turtle's life for a long, long time!