Sunday, April 15, 2012

me : foster parenthood : thinking about the unthinkable

It's been a while since I've blogged about BB, our foster baby. In fact, I haven't blogged about him since Christmas Day. Part of the reason is because it's hard to blog about him and not give away any identifying factors. Part of the reason is because it's just hard. Period. 


As I've written about before, falling in love with BB was pretty instant. We knew from the very beginning that if he came up for adoption, we wanted him. A few weeks after we got BB, we had put him down for the night and after a while, Joey had also gone to bed. I started journaling and thinking, and I think it's safe to say that late-night thinking never goes well for me. Needless to say, I started thinking of all the what-ifs that could happen with BB. It wasn't long before I had a complete emotional melt-down. I went through every possible scenario that could play out with BB. Everything from us having to say good-bye to him forever as he went back to a life with his birth-mother, to us keeping him forever and me being the only momma he ever knows. I bawled. I pleaded. I prayed. I cried. I sobbed. I couldn't bear the thought of letting him go. Not when I already loved him so much. Around 3 am, I realized that he would be waking up in just a few short hours and that it would be incredibly unfair to him if I was tired and cranky with him all day because I stayed up too late thinking of things that may or may not every happen. It was at that moment that I knew the only way I could handle this gig, this being a foster-parent, was to simply enjoy the now. There's nothing I can do about things anyway, what happen will happen. But for me, for him, I can just enjoy the time I have with him right now. And not think about anything else. Thankfully, Joey was asleep the whole time and never knew about said melt-down until I told him about it the next day. 


So that's what I've been doing... just enjoying the now. I wake up in the morning, sometimes before him, sometimes, grudgingly because he's up before me. I greet him in his crib. Drink in those coffee-colored eyes and breathe deeply of that sleeping baby smell. That's the smell we hope for anyways. He must have breakfast immediately, that is the first priority. If not, there is crying. Then it's hours of playing, talking, singing, followed by a couple hours of napping, more playing, more eating, more napping. It's what we do, nearly every day. It's a dance that we've almost perfected. Sometimes Daddy is home and that adds a new partner to the dance. But most often, it's just us. And we have an understanding between us. He understands that I will not hover around his every move, I understand that he will let me work. We both understand that sometimes it's time to sit in the floor and sing songs and play ball. He follows me around the house while I pick up clothes or toys, do laundry or clean the kitchen. This is the life we've been living for several months. 


But now, enough time is passed that it's getting harder and harder to just "enjoy the now". Now I'm having to think more about the various possibilities, what we should do, will do, can do, and even think about the unthinkable of what if we have to let him go? I'm not sure what's going to happen. I know what I want to happen, but then I have to wrestle with feelings of guilt when I think what that would mean for his mother. 


I'm not good at this. I want to be compassionate and merciful towards his mother. But I also want to be selfish and inconsiderate. It's a tightrope that I'm not walking very well. I just want what's best for him, and I can't help but thinking that staying with us would be the best. I'm trying to find peace with this whole situation. I'm usually good at that. But not this time. This time, when I look at him and try to imagine having to say goodbye forever, my eyes burn and well up with tears, my throat constricts, and it becomes difficult to swallow. I don't know if I'll be able to do it if it comes to that. And if I do make it through... would I ever want to do it again? Most of the time I have answers... this time I don't. Not a single one. 


But I do still have this little boy, and I'm still enjoying every moment with him. And for now, that's enough. 











10 comments:

  1. Praying for you Regina. I know this is a tough situation. I hope thing work out in your favor.

    For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

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  2. Regina,
    Fostering is a very unselfish thing to do. Regardless of the outcome the time and love invested in this little one have enriched his life. The very reasons you have expressed so well here are the things that have ultimately stopped me every time we've considered it. You've been brave enough to love in spite of the uncertainties. Only God knows the future for your family. I'll be praying for you. It would be sooooo very cool if the best thing for this little guy would be to stay with you.

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  3. We are guardians of two girls that came to us at 3 and 1. They're not (almost) 13 and 10. In all this we were never handed over full guardianship where we could adopt. You just never know. God has a plan and I'm sure that whatever that plan is, you will be glad that you made this time something that you could cherish.

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  4. Regina,

    We were foster parents and then eventually adoptive parents of two sibling little girls, ages 18 months and 3 1/2. (They are now 14 & 16) I remember the emotional ups and downs as you describe so well and my heart really feels for you right now. Hang in there girl, as God has a plan for you! Just love that little boy and just be, God will do the rest. I will be praying for you every day.

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  5. Regina - I am praying for you, Joey and BB.

    Walk in faith not by sight.

    Love You!
    Sue

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  6. (((HUGS))) Praying for you, dear! I don't think that I could do what you are doing. I would be a mess! I really, really admire and respect you!!!
    ~Lindsay

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  7. I think it's a wonderful thing that you're doing. No matter what happens in the future, I think there will always be a bond between the two of you.

    www.AllThingsTangled.blogspot.com

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  8. Regina, this is such a difficult thing to go through. I can't even imagine what you're feeling. It's easy for people to say, oh just don't think about it. But they're not living in your shoes. I do have to agree with Becky though. You and Joey are providing so much love for that little boy, and even if its only for a short time, he will be forever affected by that love! I hope things work out in your favor! And soon! Hang in there girl! :)

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  9. Regina, my heart goes out to you - you are doing such an amazing thing and it's hard for me to comprehend how someone could be so selfless. (I just had a good little cry too, hormones I guess.) Big hug to you :)

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  10. Regina it makes my stomach churn just reading this....you're right such a tough line to walk. You wouldn't be human if you didn't think about all the what ifs! As I told you before no matter how this ends you will have touched that little boy's heart in one way or another. {{hugs}}

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