I returned Easter dresses over the weekend. The crib is disassembled. Toddler clothes are washed and stored away. Blankets, sippy cups, and plastic dishes returned to boxes. Car seats have been scrubbed and sanitized.
I am slowly getting our life back in order, and it feels good. It is nice to have a list of tasks to busy myself with. It makes the silence in my house on this Monday morning less noticeable. I'm making phone calls for home services: yard care, carpentry work, driveway repairs. The last two months showed us the impossibility of juggling new children and home ownership. We're calling in the troops before we get the next placement call.
We don't expect to take a placement (unless an adoption placement falls into place) before our family vacation in a few weeks. I say we don't expect to because it seems everything I say I won't do comes to pass. If we are going to foster successfully, we need to make sure that our family has a chance to heal and reconnect between placements. Miriam in particular needs a breather. The girls took a lot of her world away. And she was such a trooper. Thursday night when I was tucking her into bed, back into her room, she told me, "Mom, I really wanted to say, 'I don't want them to have my room anymore!' but I held it inside because I knew they needed a room to stay in." Poor, sweet thing... I felt a huge desire to spoil her with gifts over the weekend, but I resisted. Instead, I tried to spoil her with attention. J is already looking forward to our next placement, and I guess Miriam is too because she asked today if we could get a twin for her and one for Noah too next time. I reminded her that people weren't searching for kids for us but let her imagination run a little bit just for fun!
Me? I'm doing fine. We were able to take all five of our crew to the park Friday to drop off the girls belongings. We stayed for about 45 minutes, long enough to visit a little bit and love on the girls. When our visit was wrapping up, we talked about barbecuing together. The girls' dad said that he'd told their mom that he knew exactly who they were going to call when they go on a trip, and I offered to watch the girls when and if they needed because they won't be able to leave the children until the case is officially wrapped up. It is entirely possible that none of this will truly come to pass, that we'll never see the sweet faces of Big and Little Sister again. But for now, I'm resting in the fact that they thought enough of us to want to keep in touch. It didn't feel like goodbye when we drove away Friday afternoon.