A few weeks ago after we decided that long term foster care was the direction our family would head we got the call for short term placement of our girls. Nearly three weeks later, it's looking like we'll be in this for the duration of their case or until a relative placement is secured. The foster home that was willing to taking our girls was instead filled with other siblings from the family. I believe it was the best move for all the kids. And the rearrangement has left me at peace with settling in as a family of 7. Miriam has been living out of her closet and sleeping in Noah's extra twin bed, but it is time to move some of her things upstairs and for her to create a space that is her own.
We changed a few things about our goodbye for yesterday's visit. I did a lot more preparing the day prior and visit day. The thought of coming back home with me made Big Sister grumpy and stubborn all day long. Mom and Dad left CD first, and we were all hoping their absence would make Big Sister more agreeable to coming home to the blue house. Instead, she clung for life to the case worker, eventually had to be gently forced into her car seat, and cried for a good twenty minutes of our drive home. Last week it was a half hour of calling for Mommy, so it was an improvement if only a small one. What finally calmed her down was the blanket that I'd brought in case Little Sister got sleepy. As soon as the fleece touched her cheeks, she started to relax. That will DEFINITELY be an essential item for future visits!
After we left CD, I got a text from the BioMom. It was a very sweet and simple, "thank you guys for being such awesome people." I honestly cannot imagine a better set of parents to be working with, and I told her so. Our licensing classes didn't prepare us for interacting with our girls' parents, so we're just praying our way through. We're not sure what is "allowed" and what is frowned upon, but we are learning. What I do know is that I would want to be treated with dignity and given the benefit of the doubt if my own kids were in the system. As long as we are able, I intend to continue to invest in and love on the entire family.