Last week, our foster childrens’ case went back to court. They were suppose to go into a relative’s custody after the hearing…if everything went exactly as planned; like THAT ever happens!
Josh and I had a talk the night before the hearing and decided, after much discussion and prayer, that we would agree to keep the children in our home if things didn’t go according to plan in court. We had originally taken these children in as an “emergency placement” and we told our agency they would have to find another foster home for them if they needed to be in care for longer than a month. Six children under the age of seven was just too much for us and we had been pretty clear on that. However, after just two short weeks, we had really grown to love these children and see in each one of them, how much they need a stable, loving environment right now. With that, we made our decision.
Here we are, a week later, and we still have six children. It’s funny how you can see in hindsight, how God has prepared you for certain tasks. I can honestly say that we do have peace about our decision, and although there is a screaming baby in the other room, and I’m going to have to load up four kids into the car, in the pouring rain in about ten minutes to go get Jesse from school, we’re making it all work. Somehow, making the decision to keep them in our home has changed the way I love them. I’m feeling more like their temporary Momma now, rather than just their foster parent. Unless you’ve been a foster parent, there is really no way to describe how uncomfortable those first few weeks are. You have new children in your home, making things a little crazy. You can’t discipline them the way you’d like. They don’t necessarily treat your children the way you’d like them to be treated. They don’t talk like you or eat the food you prepare. They don’t sleep through the night like your own children have for at least the last two years. You can’t get a babysitter for them when you want a few hours away, because all your babysitters must be approved through the agency after much investigation. It’s just different; in an indescribable way. But, I’d say after the first two weeks, it’s easier to tell whether or not the children are a good fit in your home. Our first placement, which was also three children, including a ten year old boy, was NOT a good fit. These kids, however, I can see staying with us for as long as they need.
It’s funny how this crazy control freak that needs to have everything planned out is suddenly flying by the seat of her pants, running on a measly few hours of sleep per night, and learning to enjoy it!
God surely has a sense of humor.