Friday, May 18, 2012

Sometimes They Come Back...

At 11:30 last night, I got the phone call that breaks the heart of every foster parent.  Little Miss and Itty Bitty were being brought back into care along with their new 7-month-old sibling, and they wanted to know if I could take them.  After a year and a half, those baby girls (now 1 1/2 and 2 1/2 years old) are back in foster care for the second time.

I couldn't take all of them.  They weren't really thinking clearly when they called me.  With all three and Monkey, I would be well over ratio of children that young to one parent.  I did offer to take Little Miss if they couldn't find a home that could take all three of them though.

I spent the next hour and a half running around and trying to get my house CPS-proof again.  I tried to get set up for a 2 1/2 year old the best I could.  I started freaking out a bit because I'm moving in four weeks.  What was I thinking to say "yes" to a placement four weeks before I'm supposed to move?!?  I couldn't say "no" though.  Little Miss' sad little eyes still weigh heavy on my heart even after all this time.  If she couldn't be with her siblings, I at least wanted her with me.  I know she wouldn't remember me, but I remember her, and that's something anyway...

Fortunately, I got a call around 1:00am saying they were finally able to find a home for all three little ones.  I'm glad the kids are together, but it breaks my heart that their parents couldn't get it together and step up for their kids.  It's one of the sad realities of foster care.  There are success stories...  And there are parents who inevitably fail their children over and over again.

Last night was a reminder of why I continue to do this.  Because these little ones deserve someone stable in their lives.  They deserve a safe place in the midst of the storm.  They deserve joyful childhood memories.  They deserve someone who will open their hearts and make them the center of their world.  They deserve the time to heal and the time to learn to trust.  They deserve to feel unconditionally loved.

4 comments:

The Campbell's Journey said...

That is always one of my biggest fears, the children coming back. I've never had any reunified but most of mine have gone to relatives. I got "that call" too. It was for a baby I had the first month of his life who went to go live with his grandma and 2 year old brother. It was one of those times where I was upset he went because the whole time "mom" was pregnant grandma said she couldn't handle another but as soon as he was placed in foster care she wanted him. Well 5 months later I got a call for both him and his brother. I had a 5 month old and 6 month old in my home. There was No Way I could take him and his brother. It broke my heart. Why couldn't grandma have just left well enough alone. Instead, both wound up getting taken from her. Just like you, this is why I keep saying yes. I know you would love to take them "all" just like I would. It makes your heart hurt when you have to say no.

In This Life said...

I experienced something close to this with our very first placement, it was heartbreaking. I loved what you said there at the end. Sometimes it's hard to explain to others why we do this but you said it perfectly!

MamaFoster said...

did they tell you that you have to count monkey into your "2 and under" count because they shouldn't have. he is no longer a foster child and you are not responsible for him 24/7.

just curious.

i understand if YOU are counting him in because that would be A LOT of kids :)

aka. "Mimi" said...

Mama - They actually weren't sure on the ratio because he's with me more than half the week. Either way, I tend to think in terms of "If there is a FIRE, can I get all of the kids out by myself?" With four 2 and unders, I'm thinking probably not. Better safe than sorry...

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