Family, Foster Parenting

Roller coasters…

I don’t like them.

rollercoasterimagesThis looks horrifying.

I never have enjoyed these, and you couldn’t force me onto one–especially that one.  

When my family went to Disneyland, I made my dad go on all the rides with me.  In the same seat.  And yeah, I was 14.  

Shut up.  

Have you ever been on Splash Mountain?  It has one drop.  It’s not even bad enough for Disney to add seat belts.  But when I went down that horrifying drop, I was sitting behind my giant of a brother with his stupidly long legs, and I realized, I couldn’t reach the hand holds.  Just as we went down, I found that nothing was holding me in, and I was certain that I would go flying out the top.  The look on my face (forever memorialized by Disney’s photo) is terrified.

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Our photo has a close up on my face.  That way all the visitors to my family’s home can both see and mock.

So, now that you know how I feel about roller coasters, you get a general idea of how I feel about foster care.  Because in my head, those two alien concepts are inexorably linked.  Being a foster parent is awful.  It’s horrible.  It’s so wonderful.  And, when you aren’t crying and peeing yourself, it’s something I’d never give up.   (By not giving it up, I mean, the time I’ve already had with the kids.  In the future, I dream of a life where my cleaning supplies can sit on the counter; I don’t have a bunch of state types visiting my home, and I finally have forever children.  Just so we’re clear, I DREAM of the day when being a foster parent is over.  Because I’m not lying when I say, it’s bullcrap.)

Regardless, FiestyPants and BoyBlue are going to go home.  I’ve accepted it, though, it does still make me cry.  But even accepting it, I’d never want to have had my life without them.

Suddenly, the maxim, “it’s better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all” makes perfect sense.  Will I be a little broken when they go home for good?

Yeah.

2coasterimages

Of course I will.

Would I rather be broken and have had the magic of being their sometimes-mom?

Absolutely.

Which is probably why when the opportunity to foster a tiny tiny baby came up, I said yes with anticipation  exhilaration, and nausea.

I’ve been a foster mom of a two-week old for 2 days.  I haven’t fallen in love yet.  That takes time.  She’s a tiny stranger.  But I have fallen in a whole lot of like.  It’ll take me a while to let myself love her.  Not because I don’t want too, but because I know it’ll hurt.  Don’t worry though, she’ll win in the end.  She deserves to be loved so much that should she leave it’ll hurt.

But, here’s the beautiful thing about being a foster parent–I might end up a broken, but if I do my job right, they’ll end up a whole lot better.  And I’m all grown up, I have a good support system, and I know that I am loved.  Broken for a while or not, I’ll be ok.  Since I have all the blessings I have, I’ll heal up and be back to new–maybe even better.

And, hopefully, FiestyPants, BoyBlue, and TinyPants’s lives will be better because we got to be family–if only for a little while.

~Amanda

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1 thought on “Roller coasters…”

  1. Of course their life will be better. And hopefully soon, one lucky kid’s life will be the best. Now, if only you’d stop making me cry with every other post, I’d be grateful 🙂
    Cristina

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