I've had a hard time writing because looking ahead can be painful. I know I should live in the moment and enjoy Crocodile for who he is, pour myself into providing love and security for him the best I can. But most of the time I get stuck in the future and clinging to my trust in God to get me unstuck. It's painful to think of the trial ahead, potentially terminating parental rights, tragically but necessarily. As he moves to his adoptive home, it's painful to think of saying goodbye to Crocodile, after being Mommy to him for over a year. It's painful to think of Dinosaur and Rhinoceros saying goodbye, Rhinoceros losing another treasured playmate, and Dinosaur losing the little guy he has adored since the moment he saw him, singing praises of his cuteness. It's painful to think of the difficult future ahead for Crocodile and his sisters, even with lots of love, because of what they've been through.
Then our agency has been overwhelmed and is begging for foster parents to take on more. We can't right now. It has a note of encouragement, that our decision to continue "strictly fostering" for now is a good one, but it's mostly very sad. Siblings are being separated. Children are being sent to residential homes for the sole reason that there is not room for them.
Then I got an e-mail. Someone I know getting back in touch with me to ask about becoming a foster parent.
There will be another home. There need to be more, but it lifted a little of the burden, the guilt. It set me onward with a purpose, something productive. It helped that my occasional cries to Facebook about the need for foster parents was not in vain. I was heard and I could help. This is the second person I've helped to start a journey in becoming foster parents.
I typed these words: "The need is so great, and while it's challenging, it's something I'm so glad we're doing." And I meant them.