Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Can I sniff your baby's head?

And then there were five.

This week was a tough one in the Moers' home. We watched our first foster child join his forever family. We knew this would be difficult. We certainly didn't shield anyone from it -

"How are you going to do it?"

"Well, we're going to cry like crazy people!"

Our daughter's former foster mom has taught us so much. She helped us to see that foster care is not about hardening your heart, and not fully attaching to a child. It is not some gift you are born with, where you can care for a child, and magically let them go without any grief or pain. Sometimes we feel the pull to do things that are painful. We love it, and we've been bombarded with blessings (one of which was watching that little baby fall in love with his adoptive parents!). We have been on the receiving end of adoption, so we could actually relive the joy this family was experiencing.

For us, the pain did not really hit until we came home to emptiness.

You think I'm nuts, don't you? You know I have three kids! Describing a 7, 6 and 2 year old combination as "emptiness" won't make sense to a lot of people.

Well, the house seemed empty, none-the-less.

Our daughter will always know her foster family; know who they are and what makes them special to us. We will see them from time to time. However, she will only have the memories that we create for her. She will not remember the time she spent in their home ... in their arms. Those are the things you have to grieve.

In the meantime, we are abusing and annoying our friends with babies. Sometimes just a sniff of their child's head is the quick-fix I need. I enjoy calling them and waking up the baby - just to hear a little one fuss for some comfort (granted, I may not have any more friends by the end of the week!!).

There will be some sort of grief with every single placement. After years and years of foster care, I watched my daughter's foster family hurt and miss her. You don't become immune to it.

"So, why do you do it? How can you go through this every time?"

There is no doubt in our minds that we are to care for children who need a temporary home. Just as our daughter was cared for when she needed the same.

In the meantime, every time we cuddle, feed or walk a crying baby in the night

... we are loving that baby with our lives

... we are loving a future family with our lives

... and we are loving and changing the world one tiny person at a time.

1 comment:

QueenBee said...

Thanks, Christine. That's powerful.