Sunday, February 07, 2010

Another Birthday

Unbelievably my "baby" is SIX years old today!!!

Braeden came to me at THREE DAYS old! When you're a foster parent, especially one hoping to someday adopt, there are often a lot of "possibilities" presented to you. As you get to know people in your agency, they get to know you, etc, there are many times when you may get a call letting you know that at some point they may have a certain child placement. Maybe they're with a relative or another foster parent and it's not the best placement and may not work out, or maybe their case is headed toward termination and the current placement isn't wanting to be a permanent home, etc. It's an emotional roller coaster. You obviously want the best for this child, but then are told that they are potentially in a "bad" place, or could be available for adoption, and even with the smallest possible information, you begin that head over heels fall for a child you don't even know. You daydream about what you would "need" to get (crib, car seat, cute clothes, etc.) :), how they could fit into the current family situation, etc. And then often the placement never even comes to pass.

Braeden was a little different for me. A good friend I had met through our foster parent training had received a placement of a little boy who was a few months shy of being two, and his infant sister. She originally didn't even know if she could "do" that, and wondered if they'd split them up to where I could take in the boy and she the baby girl. It was only supposed to be a placement for a few months, and with their young ages and the fact that we were friends and would get the kids together often, there was a possibility, but in the end they wanted to keep the two together and my friend said yes.

Well, the temporary placement became much longer, as I've seen happen all too often, and about four or five months later, it was known that the bio mom was now expecting another little one. With the two of them being one and two at the time of the birth, my friend told the agency there was no way she could take the baby. I had no placements, and prayed about my part in the situation. What a great way for me to help a child, keep them near their birth siblings, and also potentially be in line to adopting, since this case was looking more and more as if that was the way it was heading. I talked to my school district about taking some of my sick days for leave if this were to happen, talked to my mom about coming to help out since the baby wouldn't be able to start day care until they were two months old and I didn't have enough sick days to get me through, and spoke with everyone I could at the agency to let them know I'd be able to be a placement opportunity if indeed it were needed. It was looking more and more like the baby may not even be taken into custody.

On the morning of Feb 9, 2004 I received a call at work that "the baby" had been born on Saturday, and he was indeed taken into placement. Did I "want" a baby??? Wow! He was just over 5 pounds and so tiny! They were to be at my house at 5:00 THAT NIGHT! I talked to my principal, frantically made three weeks of lesson plans, shopped online for some premie sized items since I wouldn't be able to shop that day, and tried to contain my excitement. My mom was ready to book a flight out in a few days, and we were "good to go." As the afternoon went by, I received a call that they weren't able to get paperwork together in time and that it would actually be the next morning that they'd bring him to me. That gave me a little bit of breathing room and some time to shop for all the necessities.

The first night, wow! I was emotionally exhausted, physically exhausted, and wondered what the heck I had gotten myself into! I called my mom crying and she booked an earlier flight. Of course, that's how I almost always feel the first night with a foster child, throw in exhaustion from being up with a newborn, and I was a wreck, but it didn't last long. I was in awe of this little blessing God had entrusted to my care!

And what a peanut!

He grew and flourished, traveled with me to FL at only two months old, and soon became the center of my world.

He had the funniest personality, even if he was sometimes a little stinker! And he still is today! :)

What a tremendous young man he is growing into becoming. Such a heart for others, a brilliant mind and memory, and still, sometimes, a stinker! :)

But I wouldn't trade him for anything in the world, and when I was able to adopt him into my family forever, it just made the bond that was already there, even stronger.

Happy Birthday my big six year old! May you have a wonderful next year! I'm so glad you came into my life, and so excited for you to still know your older brother and sister after all this time. Love you mister!!!


Sara said...

It's official. I am totally crying. I love his story. I love your heart.

Thanks for making me cry!! What a lovely family you have..Your one lucky lady!

Happy Birthday Mr. B

Holly said...

Happy birthday indeed!!
Hope it was super special.
Love stories like this...the world needs MORE foster parents like YOU. For REAL.
You are an inspiration!
May the Lord bless you richly...I know He has but even MORE so!

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About Me

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!

Olivia - 14

Olivia - 14

Braeden - 11

Braeden - 11

Liam - 9

Liam - 9

Macy - 5

Macy - 5

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What you should know about HIV

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