Rage: Part 2

Sad Eyes needs a therapeutic environment.  It is not that he doesn’t also need a loving mommy, daddy, and family, but right now he just isn’t ready for that.  His downward spiral reached a point of him being a danger to himself and others.  His behavior was erratic.  He didn’t listen to warnings of danger.  It broke my heart.  But, I do believe and I do know that his social worker is going to do everything in her power to get Sad Eyes the best help that is out there and available to him.

The day after Sad Eyes left, T and I went on the hour drive to see Sad Eyes and his mom and granny.  We showed up at DHR and T recognized the van that he was used to being driven around in.  He asked if he’d be coming back with me after the visit and I assured him that yes, he was coming home with me after his family visit.  We entered DHR, Sad Eyes was sitting across the waiting room and jumped up as soon as he saw me.  He ran over and wrapped his arms around my waist, “I go home with you,” he said, not as a question, but as a statement.  My heart sank.  Sweet precious boy, I wish you could.  I wish you were ready for the love I want to give you.  I hugged him.  Then, we all walked into the back where we had a meeting to discuss the case with all of the members of the team.  The point of this whole thing is to get these boys back with their biological relatives, hopefully their mother.  So, we talked about what needed to be done while the boys played in a separate room at DHR.  It is then that I learned the sad truth.  Sad Eyes has been dealing with these “outbursts” and “rages” for years.  He has lived with his mother, his granny and several other of his biological family members, in two different foster homes and had a stay in a behavioral health facility, all before coming to our house.  No matter where he lives, he acts out in this way.  I am not the first person to see it.  I hope I’m one of the last, but we can’t be sure.  We all agreed that he needs help.  He needs therapy and a safe environment where he can be free to start his healing.  He has been through so much, way more than any little person should ever experience and he’s got to be able to let that out.  He needs a therapeutic environment, we all agreed.  So, we won’t see Sad Eyes for a while, but we plan on visiting him wherever he stays, so that T and he can stay connected.  I also plan to take T to see his other younger brother who is in a different foster home.  That foster mother and I have met and plan to keep the boys in contact while they are in foster care.  We don’t want them to lose that brotherly bond that they have.  So, lots of visits are in our future.

How long will T be with us?  I don’t know.  All I know is that T IS ready for a loving family.  He is ready for going to school every day, for having his meals made for him, for being taken to the doctor when he’s sick, for being read to at night, for having someone help him with his spelling words, and for love.  He’s ready.  So, as long as he’s with us that is what we’ll do.

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So much can change in a day!

I took Little Man to his visit today. What was supposed to be he and his father visiting turned out to be his father, his two grandmothers, another female relative and him visiting. To say the very least it freaked Little Man out! He screamed the first 20 minutes of the visit. He called for me, he coughed, he spit, he yelled! I cried in the other room. It was torture. He did eventually stop crying and the visit ended on a much better note than it started. Afterwards, we left for home.

On the way home, I got a text message from Little Man’s social worker saying she’d be at our house later in the day for a visit. I got home, put Little Man down for his nap and gave Baby Girl a snack. An hour and a half later their social worker pulled into our driveway as Baby Girl and I pushed her little stroller around in the front yard.

Then, the bomb was dropped. The social worker informed me she had some news. After 364 days of her grandson being in foster care, one of the grandmothers was now wanting to take custody of Little Man! What? “Where has she been for the last year?” I thought. Wow! That was a curveball. Never has she visited, never has she called! Nothing for an entire year and now this! I don’t think any child should live in foster care if there is a caring, safe, and loving relative that can and wants to take care of them. I don’t want Little Man or Baby Girl to live one more second in foster care! I want them to have permanency! I want them to have forever! I want them to have it all! But, wow! This new development sure changes things. We will see where this all goes!

So much can change in a day!

Tomorrow is the visit.

I’ve had it written on the calendar for weeks, the time is written in red.  We will not be late.  We will be dressed and ready to go well before the clock says the time.  I’ve had his outfit picked out for days.  He will be dressed in his cutest clothes.  I had his hair cut this week.  It has grown out for a few days, so it looks just perfect!  Tonight I gave him a bath, we moisturized his skin and now he smells squeaky clean!  I’ve cut his nails and cleaned his ears.  Tomorrow morning we’ll brush his teeth right before we leave the house.

Tomorrow is the visit.

Every single time that we have an upcoming visit I stress.  What will happen?  How will Little Man respond?  Will it be good for him or hurt him?  Will he cling to me or run to them?  Will he recognize people he hasn’t seen in almost a year?  I think all of these thoughts.  Then comes the preparations.  The diaper bag is packed.  The snack bag goes too.  I make sure we have everything that Little Man could possibly want or need.  We drive the two hours to the DHR building and we sit and wait.  Tomorrow will be the same.

Tomorrow is the visit.

I want to make a good impression.  I want them to see how much I care.  I want to be there for Little Man.  I want to be his rock when he needs me!  I want to be strong, but I feel so weak.  It is stressful and I feel anxious.  I must lean into the Lord.  I must trust that the Lord of heaven and earth has got this!  He knows what Little Man needs.  He knows what I need.  He will be my rock, so that I can be that for Little Man.

Tomorrow is the visit.

Family Visit

I may not necessarily be looking forward to tomorrow, the awkward “hand off” of the babies, the staring of others in the DHR office, the crying of Baby Girl that simply breaks me, but I am preparing for it.

Tonight, we will have extra snuggle time. We will pray specific prayers over the babies. The bags will be packed, extra clothes, extra food, extra everything we may need for an entire day away from home.

I will wake up tomorrow at 5:00 a.m. to get everyone ready. The big kids will have play dates with friends. I will feed everyone a good filling breakfast. The babies will have perfect hair, perfect teeth, perfect outfits, all of which I hope say, “I love these children! I am taking care of them to the absolute best of my ability! I care about their lives! Please, care about them too!”

We will be early to the visit, because to be early is to be on time. I will smile when I see their family members. I will be pleasant and polite. I will say, “yes, ma’am and no, sir,” and try my best to make this visit go easy for “my” sweet babies and their family. In the end, I know I will cry when I have to leave them, I always do. I will not shed my first tear though until I walk away from the visitation room and go to my truck to cry. I will call my prayer warrior friends and ask for extra prayers! I will sit and I will wait. I will wait that painfully long 60-90 minutes for the social worker to call me and tell me that I can come back. I will do it all. I will do this for “my” babies.

If history repeats itself, there will be vomit to clean up from Baby Girl crying so hard, she throws up. There will be soda pop to dump out of Little Man’s sippy cup. There will be two diapers to change, two faces to wash, and two sets of hands to clean. Then, we will drive home. It will be over and we will all be exhausted!

Lord, Jesus please watch over these precious souls! Please, prepare them for this visit tomorrow. Please, help me to be for them what they need me to be!

Amen!