Last week, while looking through some of my old writing, I ran across a file cryptically entitled FC1. I opened it and read this with tears in my eyes, reliving the moments that I held my first foster babies K and N over two years ago.
I love them. That is the short story. Over the course of three days, the two most chill toddlers you will meet captured my heart (and, I think, my family’s hearts too). I love holding them and watching them smile. I love showing up at nursery and having N run, grinning, into my open arms. I love picking them up at daycare and having K attack my legs the moment he sees me. I love watching them play with my nephews. Watching them kiss my sister and roughhouse with my brother-in-law. Watching them dance as Dad plays the piano and enjoy every morsel of Mom’s home-cooked meals. I love kissing their sweaty heads and assuring them that they are safe. I love rocking them and singing “Jesus, Lover of My Soul” as they fall asleep.
I also love what they do to me. I love the mommy side of myself. I love thinking about the children God has created to be mine (and warming to the possibility that they may be younger than I thought).
Do they make me cry? Yep. Singing “Masterpiece” on the floor beside N’s pack-and-play brings sobs, but she doesn’t care. Dropping them at daycare makes me need a nap (one of my ‘sad’ coping skills). After strapping them into their carseats, I watch from the window for one last glimpse of them. Singing “in You, the fatherless find their rest” at church this morning causes me to tear up without a second thought.
Thank you for coming into my life, even if it is for only these three days. I love you. Jesus loves you. If he causes our lives to intersect again, I will be so happy. But even if not, your presence in my home was a gift. I was praying for you as I stroked your heads and rocked with you in the chair. And I am praying for you today. Be safe, my babies.
The very nature of foster care means that most often, you don’t get to know how the story ends. As a foster parent, you have to resolve yourself to this reality.
Today was a special gift of grace.
I saw K first. Though he had grown (a lot), his face was unmistakable. I got to meet his mom and dad and see little N (not so little anymore). They are being adopted together with their older brother. They are beautiful. And loved. And happy. And safe.
Tonight, my heart is full. These babies are home. My daughter is home (two years today!). For this one moment, at least, all is right with the world.