As James and I left our 3rd (well, 2nd because we missed last week’s class because I was sick) foster training class, I asked with a heavy heart, “Can we do this?” And we proceeded to have the conversation that I knew was coming.
This class was about grief and care, and really opened my eyes to the vast amount of pain and suffering these kids go through when they are placed in the foster system, even if they were removed from their home for something somewhat “minor.” They are still taken from their mom and/or dad. And that, in and of itself, is heartbreaking. We talked a lot about the amount of behaviors that kids can and will exhibit, and I started to think about our sweet little baby girl at home. Should we be bringing this into our house when she isn’t old enough to understand why this child is acting this way, and that she shouldn’t copy her? What if a 3 year old throws a temper tantrum in our living room and Bailey learns to follow suit? Bailey doesn’t have logical reasoning powers yet, and will be unable to distinguish why we discipline her for acting like that, but not the foster child.
Also, these kids go through a lot of trauma and when they are bounced around from house to house, it only increases the amount of pain and grief they will experience. If/when we move at the end of James’s internship, we would not be able to take this child with us, and would be forced to send her to yet another home.
So, we made the decision to step away from fostering.
It’s hard, and I didn’t want to quit, because I really like to finish things I start…but it was good to walk as far as we did in the process to really learn and understand more about the foster system and develop an even deeper love for the kids who are in that system.
One day, I pray our home will be full of kids who may or may not have stable families and homes. I pray our home is a warm, safe environment where our door is revolving as kids come and go as needs arise. And they will always hear about Jesus, because He’s the reason why we love.