I love your child…

by jacobjuncker

Chandra and I are foster parents.  We received our first longterm placement seven months ago.  After receiving the call, we were instructed to sit with the child in the NICU.  A few days later, we were finally able to bring her home.  In the past seven months, she has grown from a 5 lb lump that only ate, pooped and cried to a 16 lb bundle of energy that babbles, rolls over (back-to-front and front-to-back), eats real pureed food, and a bunch of other things “normal” babies her age do.

She didn’t start at “normal,” she was so small that she didn’t even register on the growth curve.  She’s had her fair share of trials in her first year, but she is thriving. 

 

As I write this post, she is “talking” to the toy cat that swings above her play mat and blowing raspberries at the giraffe that looks down at her while she lays on her back (see picture to the right) on the mat.

For the past seven months, this foster child has been wholeheartedly welcomed into our home as if she were our own.  We’ve loved her through the many late night feedings, exploding diapers (crap-acalypse) and times of sickness.  We have lovingly transported her to visits with her biological mom and dad: she has 4-6 visits a week, 3-5 days a week.  She has never been with her bio parents, up to this point, for longer than four consecutive  hours.  For all intents and purposes, for the past seven months, this foster child has been one of the family…which is why I’m always amazed when one of her bio-parents asks, “are you going to be OK when she comes back to me?”

The answer is simple:  HELL NO, I won’t be OK!  I love your child!  But, I didn’t get into foster care to steal your child away from you.  I became a foster parent to provide a safe, loving environment for children to grow while parents, who have made mistakes, can get there lives back together.

Yes, I love your child.

There is a lot of grace in the foster care system: some of which I do not understand.  And that’s OK (I am a pastor who is constantly amazed by grace)…just don’t abuse the grace you’ve been given in this situation.

I pray the best for you, bio mom and dad, because…yes, I love your child.

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We don’t know what will happen with “baby girl.”  But, we do pray the best (even if we don’t understand it).

Chandra has written quite a bit about our experience, check out her blog:

You can’t just ‘kinda’ like ice-cream, July 8, 2010
Wherein I thank Richard Nixon, July 16, 2010
IN NOMINE PATRIS…, July 23, 2010
Dear Tess, July 31, 2010
I swear she’s telepathic, August 28, 2010
A privileged whine, September 9, 2010
FOUR!!!, November 2, 2010
November is break your heart month, November 5, 2010
Creeper, December, 23, 2010
Life Lessons, January 6, 2011

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