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Monday, February 25, 2008

More To Balance...

I first named this blog My Balancing Act as I always feel as I am trying to balance so many aspects of my life. Now there is soon to be yet one more thing to add to that long list; Foster Parent.

What started off as a strong desire to adopt from China has slowly turned into a call perhaps, to foster here in the US. It is a rather long story that perhaps I will share in greater detail another time.

We are just starting this journey and have a ways to go until we actually have a child placed in our home. We are taking our first step in this journey next week when we attend an orientation meeting with the agency we are considering.

While we wait for training classes and such we are busy trying to take care of things around here that we know will need to be "fixed" before we can get approved. Safety gates for the fire places, woodburner, stairs etc... locks for the medicine cabinets, locked gun cabinet etc... Plus we need to find an extra bed and dressers for the room we are setting up. We are hoping to have one full time placement and also keep a bed and or crib open for respite or emergency care.

I still keep trying to talk myself out of this every so often, but I can only find reasons WHY we should do this rather than why NOT. Suprisingly even my husband keeps counteracting my "what-if's," with "we must's."

We are experiencing such an array of feelings ranging from joy to fear to excitement, to fear, and did I mention fear??? But honestly it is mostly excitment and joy.

There is so much attention and focus on orphans and needy children in Africa, China, and other countries and so little attention to the great need here in the USA. There are so many children that for whatever reason can't be with their own families and yet still need to be allowed to just be kids and be loved and cherished and appreciated regardless of what their parents are going through. From what I am learning there seems to be quite a few more children in need of care than there are families to care for them. It just breaks my heart.

Many if not most of these kids are in need of care due to abuse or neglect and therefore have some emotional scars as a result. Sadly these scars often appear as behavior problems that scare many potential families from even trying to reach out. My question that I kept asking myself(as I had/HAVE those same thoughts) is if we don't try who will? If they aren't given the opportunity to see and experience something different, how will they know there is something different out there?

My own life is far from perfect, but quite comfortable right now. Years ago we were in the trenches raising a very emotionally disturbed child, life was anything but comfortable. So there is a huge selfish part of me that does not want to give up my comfort and risk putting myself or family in those trenches again. But sometimes I truly think if we're too comfortable, somethings out of balance! Doing the right thing, making a difference, helping another usually is anything but comfortable. The things that make the biggest difference usually mean having to sacrafice something whether it be your comfort, you money, your time, whatever you may hold most precious.

While we go through the process to get certifed/licensed and await that first placement I am not content to just sit and do nothing. I have found so many ways to still reach out and help either the children themselves or those that care for them. I will post more on that in the next day or two. There are so many ways you can make a difference without having to actually foster a child, including projects your children may enjoy, like making Easter Baskets!! Check back in a day or two and I will have more ideas!!

Meanwhile those of you that feel led, please pray for me and my family as we have many material needs that need to be met rather quickly as we get ready, as well as we need MUCH emotional support as this is a BIG change and step for all of us!

1 comment:

Heather said...

Good luck on your foster care journey. You will find that the things you need to fix and the supplies you need to get will all fall into place when you need them. We have been so blessed through the foster care experience and would recommend it to anyone who has the heart and the time and the patience for the incredible amount that is requiered of you and like wise the incredible reward that you recieve. There is nothing like it.