Thanks for the great comments on the last post. I really appreciated reading your thoughts and questions.
Meegs asked: Does having these exchanges make it harder for you to hope for an adoption outcome? Or, maybe I’m jumping here, are you hoping for adoption or reunification? … I’m just very curious about how your and their relationship with BM changes your feelings about the ultimate outcome. If adoption does occur, will there be a continued relationship with BM?
Great question. The biggie of course is: am I hoping for adoption or reunification? I used to think about this all the time. My mind would run in circles of: I love those kids to death and losing them would be like losing my breath. Its been so long now. The girls don’t know any other life. Sprout has come such a long way. I want to see them grow, and learn, and walk down the aisle. I want them forever. But I’m a foster parent and I believe in my role as such. I believe in change. I believe in reunification. I believe that there is power in roots, culture, and skin color. I believe that no matter how wonderful the adoptive parents are, there would be a loss.
It would go around and around and around. Hope for adoption would creep into my heart and then the guilt would flood it. The answer that brings me the most peace is: Thank God I’m not the one to decide.
I have faith that they will end up where they are meant to – pros and cons on either side.
And so when I’m doing a good job keeping myself in that balance, the notes do nothing but help. I’ve always known that she was a good person. Most parents with children in foster care are. So I’ve always known that her inability to get herself well and get her children back (thus far) is nothing short of a tragedy. The respect I have for her comes from a place of empathy and I’m relieved to be able to share a bit of that through our exchanges.
If they are reunited, I’m so glad to have this meager foundation on which I could maybe build more of a relationship – to be a support, and an ally, and keep my connection to my (our) wonderful children. Same goes for if they are adopted. I don’t know what the continued relationship would look like (it would be up to us and BM to work out), but I’m hoping that there is one. And in the off-chance that there isn’t, I’m consciously pulling together every picture, note and drawing now…every last bit of BM for when the kids are older and come asking. Because I have no doubt they will and I would do anything to mitigate that loss.
Erathora asked: I remember you saying awhile back that you weren’t sure if bio-mom knew that you were two foster moms. (NOT your decision.) I am wondering how that has changed with the journal, and if there has been any reaction to it.
This is the question of the hour! When I was writing the first note, it took me so long to figure out how to sign it (before this structured journal, I would just send notes “from the kids”). I chickened out and didn’t sign it at all! Then I just followed her lead and signed my first name on all the following. I’m thinking about adding in A’s name one of these days, thus ending all speculation. Frankly, I don’t know what’s stopping me. But really, if it were a bet, I’d put some good money on her already knowing. Her notes always refer to “you guys” and Sprout sure as heck isn’t talking about any dads…