Hello, Mama S here. So much to say, so little time in the day! Within the past few weeks our family has grown from three to four. Little Lady, who you may recognize as the teenager that has stayed with us from time to time over the past few years has come to live with us. We are both beyond excited, and exceptionally devastated.
On one hand, we are extremely excited to welcome her into our family on a more permanent basis. We love having her around, she brings an interestingly fun dynamic to our household, as any teenager would, and we are happy to offer up our love and support in this time for her.
On the other hand we are beyond devastated. This move to us means that she has had to leave another family. She has had to pack up and move across the state and leave all her friends and her school. Another family has failed to adopt her. Anyone who has lost loved ones knows the pain that causes; imagine losing almost everyone. The trauma that comes along with a transition of this size is immense. The loss is almost too much to bear.
She came to our house in an “emergency” fashion and with only a few clothes in her backpack. We are working to gather all the rest of her belongings, but being across state that poses a few logistical challenges. I quickly went to the store and bought her new clothes and personal care items to get her through until we can get her what she needs. That may sound exciting- new clothes, all new personal care items, fresh start. It is, in a sense, it is also very sad. That means there is nothing familiar.
She is a wonderful child that will need the same love and structure that we give P. Again I ask, if you see us in our home or community and do not understand how we are parenting, please feel free to ask us privately.I love sharing our parenting strategies and how they have worked for us the past few years, just not while our littles are standing there.
Please know that Little Lady is excited to join our house and very sad that she has had to. Emotions are overflowing in our home and there have been more than a few tears shed. Please send happy thoughts, loving prayers, and hug your families just a little tighter tonight. We could all use a good hug. Please also understand that if you talk to Little Lady and she doesn’t seem “excited” or “happy to be with us”, we do not take that personally, and you should not on our behalf. Her moving in with us comes with extremely complicated emotions and everything she is feeling is understandable and is to be respected. Do not tell her to smile, ask her how excited she is to live with us, or tell her how lucky she is. That only takes into account one fifth of the situation. Rather, say something along the lines of how nice it is to see her, how excited you are to get to know her better, how nice it is for our family to get to spend more time with her, and/or just a simple, how are you doing- with respecting and validating whatever comes out of her mouth. As a teenager it could be just about anything.
Mama A and I are doing self-care this weekend and will be having our first date night in quite some time! Self-care is so important in general, but when you are foster parents it takes on a whole new importance!
There is so much more to say and yet this is where I leave you. Stay tuned for next steps in our journey and, as always, thank you for being so loving and supportive. We could not do this journey on our own. Thank you for being a part of our village!