Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Casa News

Received some interesting news today - from Little One's CASA worker, not the case worker, go figure. At least someone is giving me the "story."

She told me that his Grandma was in town recently, from Alabama to visit. I knew she was here and they had scheduled an additional visit for him that week for that reason. I didn't know where she was from. The CASA worker then went on to tell me that she was upset that the agency hadn't called her to be a part of the visit. Inside I was thinking, "OK, why would you need to be a part of that?" But then she said that mom "still wants him back." (OK, I know that, that's why his goal is return home.) BUT, that if she "can't have him" she wants Grandma to be his Guardian, like she is for his 3 year old BROTHER!!! I NEVER knew he even had a sibling!!! So, she said the agency is thinking about this, I guess. I mentioned something about a interstate compact and how they take a long time. She said they talked about somehow getting around that by making her a private guardian, not subsidized or something.

Now I understood why she was upset they didn't let her know of this visit and ask her to be a part of it. HELLO! The CASA worker was appointed to be Little One's voice for his future. How can she fully do that if they are thinking of placing him with a relative she has never met? Not only that, but the Grandma cares for her own elderly parents and the 3 year old brother. The brother, supposedly, has some major issues. Not sure exactly what. She wishes she could have seen him and viewed these "issues" because, as she said, if they are due to environmental factors she doesn't want Little One to turn out similarly.

She pretty much asked me what I thought he needed as far as a placement. How do you make a call like that? I told her honestly that I had no idea. I don't know his family AT ALL. Just because mom talks junk about me doesn't mean a lot. I understand her jealousy, her fear of the unknown, me. I have never even met her. I also know nothing of Grandma. Who am I to say he should or shouldn't go to either. That's partly what CASA is there for.

I told her what I could. I told her I was concerned about his future development. He is doing great right now, but is showing me some signs of attachment disorder. He has some sensory issues as well, which the developmental therapist and I are looking into. We filled out a profile and it will be "scored" this week. We are also looking into oral motor issues. With the exception of bread and crackers, he tries to swallow pretty much everything. If the piece is big enough he will chew, but he swallows about everything without chewing, or tries to.

His next court date is July 10, of course it's one day after we leave for FL, so I won't be able to go and hear what is said. I wish I could. I wish I could meet them. I doubt at that time any major decision would be made. So even if they started going toward Grandma right away I don't think it could happen anytime real soon. If he lives here 4 months beyond that, he will have been here a year. At that point, if they did terminate mom and decide to move him somewhere else, I COULD appeal the decision based on the fact he's been here a year and I'm a stable long term placement. I overrule others if parental rights are terminated and he's been here a year or more. Would I even want to make that decision?

I don't think a move will be good for him no matter who it is to, even mom. Not because she's not a good placement, I don't know that, but because he's been moved so many times already. BUT, at least he knows mom. He sees her every week. Grandma he's seen once. So much info, so much to pray about. I pray for God's will. I pray for open doors to the "right" decision.


Julie said...

I will be praying too- it is just so hard in these situations- what is trully best for him? who knows- I just wish God would write it in the sky!! Good to have some news but makes for more confusion- hang in !

Susan said...

In our state the law just changed. A de facto parent who has cared for a child for at least six months gets equal consideration to a relative for long term/permanent placement. If the relative has not maintained contact the de facto parent may be given preferential consideration. It is very slowly changing the way de facto parents are considered in our courts. Many of them must fight for the new law, but it will happen. If you seriously want to adopt, really think about asking for de facto status if you don't already have it. Even if the social worker tells you that it isn't necessary.

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I am a single mom to four amazing kids; each of whom just happen to have been adopted. The first three were adopted through foster care, and we just completed an international adoption from Haiti. Our family has grown through adoption and I am all the more blessed to know each of my children. I worship a mighty God, teach Special Ed, love bargains, and am inspired by Pinterest... come along with us for the ride!

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