Monthly Archives: June 2012

One month anniversary

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Today marks the one month mark of welcoming our first foster placement into our home. What a rollercoaster it’s been in this short time, too! We are all adjusting a little more each day. It’s such a huge transition, which affects every member of the family. My girls suddenly have less of our attention. While they have enjoyed having another playmate, they are both acting out in their own way. Mealtimes and bedtimes are nuts. Leaving the house now requires a lot more prep work.

It’s not been easy. I knew this going in and had tried to prepare myself, but you can’t really foresee how each person will react to another family member thrown in the mix. About 80% of the time, I feel pushed to my limit, overwhelmed, need an extra 12 hours in the day. The other 20%, I’m still frazzled but can manage. Countless times in the past month, I have gotten to the point where I feel that I’ve made a mistake with this fostering thing…that I’m not “that kind” of mom who juggles a hundred kids with ease, smiling all the time. Some dear friends have had to remind me why we started this in the first place. Obedience. Satan has tried to muddy my thoughts and convince me that we can quit this, that somebody else will do it, that the Lord really didn’t want us to do this. The Lord has actually felt very far away the past few weeks, at a time when I thought He’d be the closest. While I know this is not true, it’s felt as if He saw what a crappy job I was doing as a foster mom and decided that all those doubts/lies/fears I had prior were right, so He would just abandon this idea of having the Keyses be foster parents. People, this month has been tough.

We found out that there is some extended family that may be interested in taking him. I immediately started pulling away emtionally, as I expected him to be out of our house within a week. I have heard nothing more, and from talking to several others, this may not materialize into anything. What a bizarre dynamic. Bond and love your foster children, as if they are your own…but not too much, or your heart will be broken into pieces, when they leave. What?!?!?! How do you even navigate this? At times, I feel like I can provide a safe and nurturing home, without having to be too emotionally invested. At other times, I decide I will abandon all “heart protection” and deal with my pain, when he leaves.

It’s not been all gloom and doom in our house. We’ve had a few moments of peace and joy and thankfulness. Jesus has specifically placed this little boy in our family. I hope that Jesus will be able to use us well, no matter the length of time he’s with us.

We’re rolling 5 deep!

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It’s been over a week, since we welcomed a new addition to the family. Things have been pretty crazy ever since. I’ve felt the entire spectrum of emotions, it’s seemed. It’s kind of difficult to describe our week, as we have to be careful not to share information that we shouldn’t. Here are a few highlights:

For the first few days, all three kids were sleeping until 9:00am. This is practically unheard of in this house, so I know this was straight from Jesus.

Friends have provided meals, which has taken so much stress away from our first week.

Having three kids is really hard. We’re still trying to figure out the bedtime routine, if one of us is gone. Unfortunately, we can’t trust Ezra alone with Evie, and we can’t find a good way to manage both babies, at the same time.

He had his first visitation, and we were able to meet his birth mom. It went very smoothly, so I was so very grateful for that. We’d love to build a relationship with her through this process.

I’ve had many moments of crippling doubt. All the fears I had previously about this entire process seemed to materialize this week. It felt as if the Lord had abandoned us, as soon as we had “gone through” with what He asked of us. Of course, I know in my head that this is not true, but these thoughts and feelings plagued me for several days.

In my low times, I’ve wondered if we’ve made a terrible mistake with becoming foster parents. Something both great and rattling about saying “yes” to the Lord, though, is the fact that there’s no going back now. What’s the alternative? Returning to our safe, comfortable, easy life? He’s radically changed my heart, my plans, my view on what my life should look like…and, I’m thankful for it!

p.s. Remember this girl that the Lord introduced me to at Chick-fil-A? Funny thing…I have a friend in Bible study who is going through the foster/adopt certification classes right now. It occurred to me that this girl had mentioned the same location of the classes where my friend goes. I asked my friend, and they totally know each other and eat lunch together at training!!

Our first placement!

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We’re a family of five. I’m a mother to three. Sounds so weird!! Baby boy is 10 months old and is beyond precious. Super cuddly and smiley. Evie doesn’t know quite what to think of him, but Ezra adores him.

Let’s back up…Ezra had been complaining of her front tooth hurting. (When she was around 2, she fell and knocked that tooth loose.) I made an appoinment, and we were walking out the door when my phone rang. My social worker gave me the little information she had, we said yes, and he was here 30 minutes later. It was a whirlwind. Grant and Ezra went on to the dentist, and I scrambled around the house cleaning. Evie was taking a nap, thankfully. Grant and Ez come back 10 minutes later saying the office was closed. I must have written down the date wrong. (I think this was the Lord, though. First, because I rarely make mistakes like that 🙂 Second, because I typically don’t get ready unless I’m leaving the house. If I had not been on my way to the dentist, I would have not been showered and put together. If I had not been ready when I got the call, I would have felt so unprepared.) Another social worker dropped him off, answered a few questions, then left. It was just crazy how quickly things happened.

Things have gone fairly smoothly. The hardest part about it is the fact that I now have THREE children. Gracious. Evie and he are practically twins, although Evie is 3 months older. Grant and Ez went back to the dentist yesterday (at the correct time). I had the two babies, and they both wanted to be held, both wanted to eat, both wanted a book read. I texted Grant to see how much longer he would be, and he responded with “They’re pulling the tooth.” What the WHAT? At that moment, I knew He’d made a mistake, choosing us for this. One day in, and I was about to lose it. We told the Lord, though, that we’d do whatever He wanted us to. I’ve had to remind myself that THIS is what He’s asked of us. Just because He’s called us does not mean it will be smooth sailing.

At the very beginning of this foster process, I really only wanted to adopt. Through the training and God changing my heart, I went to the other extreme and only thought about fostering, not really entertaining the thought of adopting any of the children who lived with us. That is until this adorable baby came through our door. I felt it immediately. I understand now how terribly difficult this will be.

We would absolutely be so grateful for your prayers. Please pray that we would be the kind of parents that each of our kids need. Please pray that Ezra especially would see Jesus through this experience. Please pray that we could form a relationship with the birth mom.