Thursday, May 22, 2008

Spinning Under the Willow

Last night it was just me and the girls, with Richard off trap-shooting with some friends. We had Jimmy John's subs for dinner (with Richard). After dinner, FC1 dragged my spinning chair outside, FC2 dragged the Happy Mother's Day rug they made for me out to the willow, and I brought my spinning wheel and fiber. I spun under the tree while the girls played on their bikes, in their playhouse, and in the sandbox. Then we all just sat and chatted for a good half hour or so before their mom called. After that it was brushing teeth and bedtime.

Not so much exercise last night, but had some very good quality time with the girls. Found out something interesting, too. FC1 was named after her mom's foster mother, from when her mom was in foster care as a child. I thought that was so touching, that she named her firstborn after somebody she obviously admired a great deal. Then I was brought back down to earth by the fact that even though this woman had that kind of impact on her, it hadn't been enough to break the cycle. Damn. This fostering business is a chocolate-covered lemon, with the sour always lurking just below the sweet. That said, I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Just yesterday I was having a conversation with a coworker about foster care. He is of the opinion that kids just shouldn't go back to their abusive/neglectful/whatever real parents. I don't think he gets it that kids need their parents. Or at least their primary parent. It's not that they want them, or prefer them. It's a human need, and if that's missing, there's a piece missing from that child from that point on. Period.

This is where my faith steps in as well. I believe each person has their own path in life, with God at their side. It is not my place to decide that this child doesn't belong with their parent(s), if that parent has passed the state's requirements. I can't protect beyond a certain point, except to hope that the tools I've helped them develop will serve them well. I must be at peace with all possibilities after I let go; they may thrive, they may stagger and fall, they may follow in their dysfunction's footsteps. This is where I end, where I must let go and trust God to be there when they need Him most.

This is where I become my final incarnation as a foster parent: Available.

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