Little Miss had her first visit with her parents since she moved in with me (her second since coming into care), and it proved to be extremely telling as to how this case might go.
Because I'm a single, working mom, the caseworker does all of the transporting and supervising of the visits. When he brought Little Miss home tonight, he had his arms full of bags, and had to go out to the car to make a second trip. When he came back, he explained how the evening played out.
CW - "So... Basically, Mom showed up to the visit, but she was completely emotionally checked out. There was just nothing there. Everything that you see here (gesturing toward the bags) is from Dad."
As I unpacked, I found a new pack of diapers, wipes, formula for the week, three boxes of baby oatmeal (remind me to blog about what she has been fed and taught later), two new 2-piece outfits, a Halloween costume, a bucket full of candy (I'm hoping that wasn't for the baby), a bag of clothes and things from home, and a $10 bill.
Apparently, Mom left immediately after the hour was over, but Dad stayed to talk to the caseworker. He said that he was crying and that he just kept saying over and over, "I just want to be able to see my girls," and that he didn't understand why he couldn't have them because he didn't do anything wrong. Miss was living with her mom at the time that everything came to light. Dad spends quite a bit of time at the hospital visiting Itty Bitty because there isn't much of a restriction on that other than the hospital hours. All of those visits are semi-supervised because of the setting. He just really misses Little Miss and wants to be able to spend more time with her.
It's going to be hard for him because he's young (caseworker wasn't sure, but thought maybe mid 20s) and has little to no support system as far as family or anyone around to help him with two infants. There are also several questionable things that need to be researched and resolved before CPS makes a recommendation as to dad gaining custody.
It's still very, very early in the case, so there's no telling how it will play out. All I can say is that it makes me very happy that Little Miss has a daddy who clearly loves her, and who she obviously loves. Miss gets really excited and practically gives herself whiplash every time we see a blond guy in his 20s, so her dad must be blond (that, or she just has really good taste ;-). I'm grateful that he cares enough to try to provide for her needs even while she's in foster care. He doesn't have to do that, but the fact that he has speaks volumes.