In early May 2018 I made the heartbreaking phone call to our CPS Case Worker to inform her that I would not be adopting the boys. I had to force the words out of my mouth. I couldn’t believe I was saying them. The tears flowed. “OK,” she said, “we will move forward with finding an adoptive home.” I nodded through tears unable to respond. It was the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make.
Have you ever ran a marathon?
I actually haven’t but I ran this metaphor by a marathon runner and she approved. 🙂 I was running a marathon for 7.5 months. Every day was a struggle. Every day all parts of who I was were maxed out. I served and served and served with little to no filling of myself. I gave and gave and gave. I shelved my own needs because the boys needed so much more and it was only going to be temporary. I was physically and mentally broken down. When I got the call that we were starting to transition the boys home over a 6-week period I focused 110% on making this transition for a 3.5yo and a 1yo as smooth as I possibly could. No matter what it took. I now had an end-date. The end was coming. The success story was coming! I could see the finish line…only 6 miles left (or in my case 6 weeks) and so I just kept pushing in, pressing in, and running as hard as I could to cross that line. I navigated awkward situations with the biological parents while trying to get to know them, tough questions and LOTS of tears from J, and tried to instill as much Jesus as I could into this family during the last few weeks.
The Finish Line Vanished
<< 24 hours before the final return of the boys to their parents >>
Suitcases were packed, Amazon gifts collected, friends coordinated, a final heart-felt goodbye letter written, and an explanation given to J that he would no longer be living with me (his home for 9 months), but instead he would be living with mommy and daddy now. We. Were. Ready. And then I get THE TEXT that flipped everything upside down. “He’s in jail.”
And that’s when the finish line was yanked out from under my feet just as I was going to cross it. And then CPS immediately asks, “Are you open to adopting them?” Sooo…I was expecting to hand them over to their parents tomorrow and now you’re asking me to keep them forever?! 😳
- Did I love them? Not a shred of doubt.
- Did I want the best for them? YES
- Did I want them to lose their mom and dad? Never.
Thus, I had to keep running. No water breaks. No rest. No time to walk. Keep running. Switch into repair mode and fix, fix, fix. Try to explain to J why he can’t go see Daddy anymore. Try to help bio mom who is basically now homeless, jobless, and broke. Now I’m running even faster.
First, CPS gave me 24 hours to decide about adopting them. After some pushing I was able to draw it out to two weeks and that’s when I said no. I was convinced they deserved a mom (who wasn’t losing her mind) and a dad. J loved his dad so much, who am I to deprive him of that? I couldn’t. I wasn’t going to be selfish just because it would hurt me. Not once in 9 months had I considered the idea that they wouldn’t return to their parents. The entire idea was foreign to me. Without a solid answer from the Lord, after seeking pastoral counsel and personal counseling, I landed on “no.” It was awful. With my own decision I had broken two little hearts. I had chosen to add more trauma to their already broken situation. But I had to continue being their Mama for some unforeseen amount of time. Then, in came the flood of grief (that post to be continued…).
So CPS located a new family. We met this family. And the boys were supposed to move there…but they didn’t…two more times.
#mamalisafosters #thisisfostercare #reunification #fosterlove #nationaladoptionmonth