Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Growing Up, Growing Out

Baby 4 is developing and changing so fast, I can't even keep up! Last week he started Preschool and Dance!
Today I got an email from his caseworker. They had court today and I didn't go because I didn't particularly want to. There have been some annoying details going on with visits and caseworkers and relative resource that have been bothering me. There is this perception of foster parents that all we want in life is to keep people's kids away from them. That couldn't be further from the truth in Baby 4's case. I have tried very hard to get the county to educate 4's family about his needs so he can spend MORE time with them. Of course I would love to keep Baby 4. If he needs forever from me, I will happily give it. I would never sabotage a reunion because I love my boy.  I have told many people on many occasions that if relative resource seems like she's going to work out, then the training and transfer should happen sooner rather than later so 4 doesn't get more comfortable with us than necessary- but every time we go to court nothing happens and Baby 4 is left hanging in the wind for another 2-4 weeks.

So the caseworker went to court and shockingly nothing happened. Relative resource asked about her petition for custody that has been ignored since April and the county was instructed to get on it and figure out what they think of her. So they go back November and DHS needs to have proof that they have prepared her to care for him and that she either can or can't. If she can, he could be gone by Christmas.

Baby 4's made so much progress in the past 6 months and I'm so proud of him. I'm proud of all of us, really. I didn't know Brandon and I had what it takes to parent a kid like him. Whether he stays or goes, he's going to be better for the time he was here. That's why we do it all, to improve a child's life- even just a little.

It's unnatural to say goodbye to your child. In foster care we are asked to make strong attachments and yet let go easily. We are asked to plan and consider our kids as if they are permanent, yet realistically they aren't. It puts a little spin on every accomplishment and milestone. We're one step closer to losing our son with every dance class and bus ride. I shouldn't have to feel this way until Highschool graduation, but I may never get to see Kindergarten with 4.

As mopey as that sounds, it makes me appreciate our time together a little more. I want to experience everything I can with him. The concept of being separated makes playing "What's this dinosaur?" suddenly tolerable- maybe even enjoyable.

While 4 may be leaving my home, he has left a permanent mark on my heart. For that I am extremely grateful.

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