It has been a while since I posted. There are times when life rushes around us and writing, which is one of my loves gets put on a back burner. Many of you know that my husband and I foster…no, not dogs, we foster children. We were kind of sucked into it. Before we married we talked about one day adopting children. You know, we said “After we have our own….” After a miscarriage and not getting pregnant, we talked about becoming foster parents. Some of our friends, Suzy and James were going through the process and they encouraged us to do it. We were talking about it. It was one of those things….mostly just talk. I talked to a friend of mine who talked to her sister and before long, we were asked by the family to take a “baby”. I say “baby” because he was a toddler, almost two years old. We took him. That’s our boy. I cannot really go into details at this time but basically, when you take in a child at the request of the family it is called a “fictitious kinship foster” and you do not have to be a registered foster parent, although you do have to be checked out and have your home inspected and deal with CPS…sigh…and you have no advocate to advise you of your rights or where to go to get help, etc. You are pretty much at the mercy of the system. One day, after our adoption is final I will share the incredible story of how it all happened. What I want you to know is the boy was returned to his biological family and a few months later he returned to us. It was horrific. We hated it….the part where he went back. We liked the part where he came back to us. In any case, we found out that if we registered our home as a “foster to adopt” home, our adoption would be paid for (adoptions can be quiet costly). After kinship fostering for over a year we went through the whole process of registering our home. It’s not fun; in fact, it is a pain.
Our area is pretty desperate for foster parents right now. I am a mama without babies. I love babies. We both love babies. Late last year we were asked to foster baby twins…little Mamas (baby girl) and Boo ( baby boy). We were told they would most likely become available for adoption. We said “yes” and we fell madly in love. Seriously, they were so tiny and beautiful when we brought them home. Just as their personalities were beginning to emerge a family member agreed to take them on. We spent more than 6 months loving them and nurturing them with the hope that we would add them to our family and they were ripped out of our arms.
My arms which constantly held a baby for the past six months are empty. The Hubs never wants to foster again. There have been many tears. Understand, people would constantly tell us how these babies looked like us…strangers mostly and some friends. They belonged. Basically, the thing that makes us good foster parents, that we love the children, also makes us hate fostering. It’s like giving pieces of your heart away. We do have a hope. Our hope is in Jesus Christ. We know and have faith that our babies, yes, our babies are in His mighty hands. We have a testimony that we have had a child taken and then returned to us. We have experienced God working on our behalf to bring a child back into our arms. We know what He is capable of and we trust Him. We know He is good. So we pray and we wait.
And in the meantime, I am trying to get some things done that I haven’t been able to do with two infants in the house. I am also keeping busy.
Now to the “Too Much Fun” part of this post. I had to catch you up on our situation so you can appreciate the humor of the rest of the post. God seems to bless me with some moments of surprising joy.
Our pastors are heading out on a missions trip later this week so I asked if I could take their almost 5 year old to “The Jumpy Place” (big warehouse filled with jumpy castles…a place where kids can safely run wild) with our boy this week. Since having three kids is my norm, I decided to invite my niece too. My niece, Ellie is only 3 weeks younger than The Boy; they are both almost 4 years old. They look like twins. Seriously, people ask me about my “twins” all the time. They are about the same height and they both have blond hair. I had our boy, Judah and Ellie and a lot of snacks. Wednesdays are $5 day and it is usually crowded but for some reason it was not crowded this Wednesday. The kids ran around and jumped and went down the big slide over and over. I will have to figure out how to get video off of my iPhone onto my blog but it is too late tonight. The boy hurt his hand on the big slide and later Judah showed me a huge burn he had on his knee also from the big slide. That boy is tough, he didn’t cry or whine about it at all. They played hard for about 4 hours with breaks for snacks and lunch.
The Jumpy Place is pretty great for grownups too. They have free Wi-Fi, magazines, coffee, etc. I took my laptop and worked on catching up on reading for our LifeGroup (Do I get a quarter for correctly labeling our in-home groups that meet weekly??) and I typed up the handout for this weeks meeting. Basically, I got some work done in between providing juice and food to three kids.
On the way home the children are in the back seat chatting rather loudly. They are all great kids, they said “Thank you” and then Ellie tells me, “Gracey, we had fun but not too much fun”. I love hearing what our almost 4 years old have to say because you never know what is going to come out of their mouths. So just to see what she might say, I asked, “What would have made it ‘too much fun’?” She was quiet for a minute and then said, “Someone would have to get hurt.” So I said, “Well, Judah has a big scar on his knee and The Boy hurt his hand,” Without missing a beat she said brightly, “I guess we did have too much fun!”
So there you have it folks, the gauge for “too much fun” is if injuries occurred.