Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Respite Care Rookies

Time to put the Legos away and get the Thomas the Train gear out... stash the American Girl collection and find the Fisher Price doll house! We're getting little visitors!

On Friday night, we will be providing respite care for the first time to a sibling group of 3. Two boys and a girl ages 3, 4, and 5. They will be here from 5 PM to noon the next day. When the kids' caseworker initially called, he told me that there were no behavior issues. The foster mom alluded to the fact that there might be a few concerns after all. She is understandably swamped, so I'm still waiting to find out exactly what's in store for us. 

It is a little crazy to me that this foster mom is so thrilled to leave her kiddos with us. We may have been approved by the state, but we're still strangers to her. I'm not sure how I'll feel about all of this once I'm in the foster are trenches. 

In Missouri, anyone can be a respite care provider. You don't have to have a home study or sit through many hours of classes. All it requires is a background check and a walkthrough of your home. I appreciate the simplicity of the process. It means that people who normally watch our kids, people who we know and trust, can babysit all our children without jumping through a dozen hoops.
The kids are excited and a little nervous about hosting. Their experience with foster kids is limited, and their imaginations provide answers for a lot of their questions right now. Noah asked me tonight while I was tucking him in, "Is it ok to ask them what its like in their orphanage?" I chuckled a little and explained for the 5th or 6th time how a foster home is different from an orphanage. 

Honestly, I'm not sure what to tell him about asking questions. I don't want him to have to walk on eggshells around the kids who come to stay with us, but I don't want them to feel alienated either. I'm hoping that they're too busy playing to worry about any heavy topics. 

We've armed with art projects, cooking projects, story books and yard games. I think it'll be a fun Friday evening. I'm most nervous about bedtime. It's already my most stressful time of day... and now we're doubling our numbers. Yikes! 

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