Transition has begun… we’ve spent time with the boys during 3 different visits and yesterday I had the chance to observe their occupational therapy… which was a lot of fun! In an effort to document the emotions and processing we’ve been walking through, I’ll try to recap the way we were feeling after each visit! In addition to the actual visits with the boys, we’ve had countless meeting and email exchanges with our adoption social worker and the team that is supporting us through it all! The suggestion- a good one- is to get to know the boys as we wait on the court date in mid July that will determine they are free to move in with us. We plan to see them at least weekly, start to attend MD appointments, therapy appointments and play with them in multiple locations. Eventually we’ll keep them for naps, then maybe an overnight… all before they move completely over to our full time care! Once that move happens, Matt and I will take a few weeks off work to bond & create our own little routine. We’ll also practice reverse transitioning where we welcome their current foster mother to visit with them so they know she’s still around! We know their current foster mother is a wealth of knowledge and she knows their history so we think we’ll keep her around as long as she’ll stay- which will likely be forever 🙂
First Meeting: June 16th- This visit felt so overdue. We had been talking about them for so long. We had seen old photos of them a few weeks back but we knew they were much older now. This visit was postponed due to Roseola so we were coming at the end of a few day battle with fevers and a rash! We had been warned that “I” was going to be pretty stand-off-ish and that after “A” saw this happening, he would follow suit. When we went in to meet them we brought Macy too. I really felt like she needed to meet them in order to fully process the concept of “The foster babies moving in with us”. We gave the boys plenty of space to be clingy and we just played with Macy and their toys. After a 10 minutes “I” was playing peek a boo with me and then they were both in my lap pushing each other off. I think we were all surprised! Macy was interacting and helping them with toys! We ran around the house in circles and there was a lot of laughter. We all had fun. When it was time to leave and we were saying “Bye”, Mr “I” came up to my legs so I picked him up, he gave me a real hug and my heart melted! I was expecting to just observe but what a gift from God to get a hug from a boy that I just met…
While it was a positive experience, it was a reality check. Matt and I began a difficult few days of processing. While we both like to process externally… I think there was a lot of concerns that we were unwilling to say out-loud for a few days! Without giving details- these boys have special needs and developmental delays… we simply did not walk into Foster Care & Adoption thinking we would be walking into the world of special needs children. When you think about it, who CHOOSES that kind of life? Any parent with special needs would tell you they wouldn’t choose for their child to be special needs… it’s really become a clear GOD THING. We’ve been praying about these boys and for God to lead us to a feeling of total peace… at During worship on June 24th Matt whispered in my ear “We’re moving forward with the boys”, I Looked at him and said “I Know”.
Second meeting: June 28th- This visit was pure confirmation that we would be just fine. We went over the I&A’s foster mom’s house for another visit. I walked in late, coming from work, and when they saw me “I” ran over to Matt and sat in his lap. WOW! This visit was a chance to play and have some real conversation about logistics. Their current foster family are Christians so it was amazing to hear how we both just feel like this is a calling and not something everyone can do! When we get real about the eternal aspect of this decision it’s quite emotional… in a beautiful way, not in a cry baby way! We ended up having a dance party and the laughter was sweet music to my heart! Both boys have started babbling “mama” and “dadda” and even though he probably didn’t mean it, “I” was saying “Mama” at me and it just felt SO SO SO RIGHT and SO SO SO HUGE. Both boys are working their sign language and they were both doing the sign for “more” during their snack time. This too was something that gave me some assurance that the developmental concerns are just hurdles that they must overcome… but with GOD, all things are possible and I feel confident that God has amazing plans for the lives of these two! We’re simply here to provide the means for them to THRIVE and GROW and OVERCOME!
As we left they were both confused and “I” even cried! What an amazing feeling to be wanted and missed… it really is something God is working out! This meeting was overwhelming and also reassuring. I finally felt permission to let my guard down and start getting ready for them to move in! Matt has been looking for cribs, car seats, a double bob stroller and other things we’ll need when they come… I have been deleting the craigslist emails that he sends and telling him not yet. I still have moments of feeling like “What if things fall through” or the unexpected happens! I have heard the horror stories in these situations and I’m not naive! But then I go back to my faith in HIS-Story and know that God is walking us through this no matter where it heads- he is refining us in his fire and we’re walking in no matter how hot it gets.
On the topic of PHOTOS & Confidentiality: I’ve talked with some of friends about this but here’s the deal… if I post any photos of the boys it will not include their faces… the details about why they are in foster care and/or things regarding their “story” will not be recorded here! The simple reason being confidentiality… but more importantly… this is OUR STORY about them joining OUR FAMILY and the process that we’re participating in… Once they are adopted then we can photograph them… expect Mindy Webb Photography to capture some fun moments of our family once we can share publicly! Hope you’re up for it Min!