I'm learning that I am a foster parent who is a defender of families and one who hopes that the good story is the true one.
Today we met two very sad parents who truly seem to be working like mad to get their family back together. We watched a mother hear a judge say her babies could not come home with her today. We watched a dad wipe away tears and keep his composure because his wife was depending on him to be the strong one. We watched a room full of people work together in the name of reunification. The workers and veteran foster parents all agreed that it was the most productive and promising start to a case they'd ever witnessed.
Today I came to understand that we foster families cannot allow our stories to be about us.
We cannot be the ones to cry in a sad situation. The family that we're helping needs our support. That means that we have to put our own emotions aside until another time. We don't get to draw attention to ourselves; because the kids, and the parents, deserve every bit of effort focused on them.
Today is about pouring every ounce of effort into giving a family their best shot at once again gathering in their family room together.
It's about validating a mother's love and knowledge of her children. It's about teaming up to create the best circumstances for her children until all the pieces of their puzzle are put together. Today is about making connections. Today is THIER day, not mine. This story is THEIR story, not mine. I am humbled and blessed beyond measure to play my small role, to be a witness to true love of a family.