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Our Last Day with Boy

Today is our last day to spend with Boy fully in our family. Tomorrow morning, we’ll be dropping him off at his parents’ home for reunification with them. We’ve done as much as we can to prepare him for the transition, and he is clearly troubled by the proclamation of change coming.

Wednesday

We told him Wednesday morning – I immediately declared to the world that I was taking the rest of the week off – and he often stopped playing and stared at his toys for a while. We started giving him the toys we’d bought for him for Christmas and went to Target to get him a (Spiderman) backpack for his cars… and I couldn’t resist getting him 5 more cars.

Thursday

He woke with a very troubled cry and Boy sobbed on my shoulder for a good 3 minutes before I got him out of his nite-nite diaper. We gave him another toy (a huge John Deere tractor with a front-end loader) and we played with it for a while until he got that stare again. Once in the kitchen, he lost his dinner from the night before – he was so worked up over the whole thing.

Instead of his parents’ normal unsupervised visits out and about, we took him over, sat and talked with them, answered questions, set up his toys in his room, and played a while. Then we left to come back 3 hours later after they’d had lunch.

When we returned, it was clear that he belongs with them – he was comfortable and looks so much like them! We went straight to Nana and Papa’s house for playing and dinner. He got some more presents and we gathered more things for him to get started in his new home.

Going forward

Super encouraging, his parents expressed how much harm they think it’d be to never see us again, so they said we could pick him up for church every Sunday or whenever. We invited them to hop in the car whenever they want to come along to get out of the house on a weekend. On our way home, we realized how nice it was to sit and visit for far longer than we expected, it wasn’t awkward, and we thought that instead of always taking him out, we could sometimes just come over and bring dinner for everyone.

So… tomorrow, we’ll drop him off, go home for a few hours, and then drive across the bay for his mom’s wheelchair games event. We asked if they’d rather us bow out from that earlier invitation, given the timing now. His dad said, “we might as well make it a big, fun family day together.” They consider us his family now, and we don’t have any problem with that. We’re here to help, encourage, and continue a relationship with Boy as we build relationships with his parents.

Taking a break

Fun - after a whileWe are going to be taking a couple of months off from fostering now. Our specialist moved us to the inactive list while we heal and get to know his parents. Besides that, we personally need to spend more time together: dating, laughing, relaxing – the stuff we did before we had a toddler who was the focus of most of our daily attention. Business-wise, we’ve had several “barely made it” months and a couple of dipping into savings months, so I really need to build up another nest egg before we bring in another little one. After the holidays will be best for all so we have some idea of planning things without last-minute “oh, you need to be available for a visit on Thanksgiving or Christmas” news.

Changing things up

We are thinking that, since we went a bit over our comfort zone of 0-2 with a 2 1/2 yo we had for 6 months, we’d try to wait for a 4-12 month old girl this time. Not walking or talking would be a change, eh?

Comments

  1. Lot of sadness, but it’s like a storybook ending with this new relationship with his parents. Spectacular job you two.

  2. Just found your blog. My husband has cystic fibrosis (double delta 508 as well) and we are also foster parents. We have a sibling group of 3 right now (ages 1,3,4). We are waiting on a date to adopt the two oldest and they are just starting the TPR for the youngest. We also had a foster baby from ages 2 weeks to 13 months. I was a wreck when she went home however now I can look at it and see how much strength her mother had to do what she had to do to get her back although we both still worry.

    My husband actually is a cffatboy. He weighs 175. BMI of 25. After we were married, he packed on 10 pounds when I started hiding butter in everything I gave him so I had to cut back on that. :-P.

    I am looking forward to reading more of your blog entries.

    • Pleasure “meeting” you. We’ve considered a sibling group in our near future, but we’re not quite ready. 🙂

      I also gained 10lbs on our honeymoon alone, but I was just 3 days off IVs on our wedding.

      2 weeks to 13mo?! Wow. We are finding that the average here is ~1yr long, but we’d previously thought it was 1mo based on years in service/# of kids from those we met. As long as Boy does well from here, we will be fine. If he returns w/ TPR, then we’ll have a monumental decision on our hands.

      Sounds like hubby and me could chat it up, as you and Beautiful. Are you a member of the Facebook CF Wives group? It’s by invite and she can if you send me your FB URL via the contact form to give to her.

  3. dianebrogan says:

    Jesse, I am so sorry for you and your wife. I have lived through your pain. My parents cared for foster children. I know how painful it is when the children are removed. I am glad to hear your story had a happy ending. God Bless. I hope everything turns our well for all of you.

    • Thanks, Diane. We keep meeting more and more and hearing of more and more foster parents as we do this. It seems like everyone has been touched or affected some way.