Last week was a rough one. Rough for me because I've been feeling pretty helpless with Big Sister. But more importantly, it was a week's worth of high emotions for her. Daily, we had multiple meltdowns where she sat and cried "Mommy" over and over. She complained that she was hungry constantly even when she had just finished a bowl of cereal, a banana, a pile of raisins and yogurt. And she fought her car seat nearly every time we had to go somewhere. I could see her thinking, "Ok, this was fun. I'm ready to go home now." And I just kept telling her over and over, "You want to go home, and it's ok to be sad about that. Mommy and Daddy are working hard to get everything ready for you. Until they are finished, we'll be taking care of you at the Blue House Home. Everything is going to be ok." I believe this was just another transition that we were making, and I just took each hour as it came.
Little Sister actually had an amazing week. Her tantrums were noticeably less severe and less frequent, and she seems to be settling into life here at her home away from home very nicely.
My blondies are all coping. There have been growing pains, but all-in-all, they are hanging in with us. Miriam has been rooming with Noah which was making bedtime more of a hassle than necessary. Wednesday night after religion class, I asked both of them what they needed to be able to go to be at bed time. They both requested to be away from each other to sleep, so that very evening, we rearranged furniture. J and Miriam are now roommates. We shall see how that goes, but at least the last two nights have been calm at bed time. And I think we'll see more of J now that her room isn't as private! There is talk of finishing the basement to add another bedroom. It sure would be nice to have, but we can barely keep our heads above water right now. Adding a home construction project, even if we used a contractor, would be more than we can juggle.
We took the girls to their third family visit, and the goodbye was SO much smoother. I think dad had talked to Big Sister and given her some reassurance about leaving. She wasn't happy, but she did let him buckle her in without force. She cried, but she wasn't frantic like she had been the last two weeks. And by the time we were merging onto the interstate, she was starting to cheer up. It was a great thing, but it was sad too because she wasn't quite as desperate to be with them. I'm beginning to realize that there may never be anything solely good or bad in foster care. Everything is bittersweet. It's fantastic that kids are being protected, but it is awful to see them torn away from everything they know and depend on. It's fantastic to be able to have fantastic communication with Mom, but it's heartbreaking to know that I'm standing in for a mother who seems to be every bit as loving and careful a parent as myself. It is such a blessing to know these girls and to have shared the last month with them, but it is so sad that it was necessary.
I'm hoping to get a chance to visit with Mom a little more when I take the girls for their WIC appointment tomorrow. She is at the top of my prayer list these days, but I only actually see her at family visits, and I don't want to monopolize her time with her kids by chatting. I really hope to let her know we are bragging on them every chance we get, and the more effort they make, the more praises we can pass along to the team.
We're gearing up for court tomorrow. I believe the purpose is for the state and the parents to each present their cases. I'm not sure what to expect- will the judge rule on the allegations against Mom and Dad? Will it just be an information gathering process? Could the girls be allowed to return home? This territory is completely new. I'm praying that allegations are proven false and that the girls are swept up in a giant family victory hug when the ruling is made.
And with that, it's off to bed for this foster mamma.... at 8:45PM.