Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Miraculous Ramblings

We have therapy here in our house. Well, we go to the Green House Center for Growth and Learning. Our kidlets have needed it to handle all of the changes in their lives and to deal with the grief and loss. Honestly, I think I've needed it too.
When a person signs up to be a foster parent, they haven't a clue what it really means. We signed up to be foster parents two and a half years ago. Our third year anniversary as foster parents will come in October. As a family of 7!! now, I'm not sure that we will continue. My mind changes from day to day. Time will tell.

I think we all start for about the same reasons; wanting to help, wanting to make a difference in someone's life, and wanting to help a child's spirit grow. Our reasons are still the same after these two years, but you encounter so many different feelings as you deal with each placement. We have had a total of four placements. One of which was only a shelter (temporary) placement. The very first placement was a struggle. We were new and I don't think I was fully prepared or knew how to handle what we encountered. That child eventually ended up leaving our home and being moved to a more specialized home. One was the Gab and Bug placement, and the last is the children who came back to us a second time.(so maybe five, but one set was twice-if that makes sense)
How different each experience has been! Each with its own set of unique circumstances. Each has helped me to grow in a way that I couldn't have imagined. Each has reiterated to me that I can do hard things. Sometimes, really hard things.

The first time our three were placed with us was an amazing experience. We always felt that they were "our" kids. They were able to grow and do so well in our home. They were able to make incredible attachments to us, something that we had not experienced prior, except for our lovely nieces. I had a hard time dealing with their birth mother at that point. Looking back at it now I realize how many things I could have done differently to help the situation, but at the time I was oblivious. As hard as it is for me to admit, I looked at her as someone who shouldn't be given a second chance ever--no. matter. what. In my eyes she didn't deserve these beautiful children. She was, however, given a second chance despite my feelings. Unfortunately, it didn't work out as the kids are now with us again.

This second time the kids came to us has given me insight. I think I can attribute that to being a mommy to my Gab and Bug. I have a different perspective on, well, everything. It's allowed me to empathize with the birth moms and grandparents in a way I could never have done before. I realize now how hard it must be for any parent to have their children taken away, even when it is blatantly obvious where the blame lies. My kids will love their birth parents forever, regardless. Re.Gard.Less. Birth Families are and will be a part of them, forever. Loving them doesn't take anything away from me, just as loving my other children takes nothing away from them. I have accepted that and am able to embrace it now.
(and it took me a looong time to figure that out)

Children are blessings, miracles even. Being pregnant and giving birth to a child is a miracle, and one that I may not experience. BUT! But, my friends, having Heavenly Father send your child to you through an alternative way is indeed miraculous. I have experienced many miracles in my life. Small ones, big ones, life changing ones. Perhaps I use the term too loosely, but I think not.
Growing up with amazing parents (who made their share of mistakes. I did say amazing, not perfect :P), meeting my husband on an internet based chat eons ago, being sealed for eternity in the Mt.Timpanogos Temple, Gabby, Bugga, T, C, and Y....all are miracles in my life. Superb blessings from a most loving Father in Heaven. I am blessed.

Fostering is a different ball game. It's hard. It can suck. a lot. But, watching the children grow and learn and BE. Amazing.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

This little girl of mine....

Bug has a way to make me absolutely crack up, even if I want to wring her neck. She comes up with some of *the* most hilarious things, and I honestly don't know where half of them come from. This little munchkin has made an incredible journey to the little girl that she is today. I know that she has always meant to be mine. She is my daughter, now and for all eternity. I am a lucky "mumma" for sure.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Goin' on a little trip

Laundry baskets make the best cars. Evah.

We really are planning a trip to San Diego this summer. Does anyone know of a great place to stay that won't make me sell my husband's kidney and maybe a lung on the black market?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Happy Happy Birthday BugBug Dear!

On April 8th our little tornado turned the big FIVE. She has been talking about this birthday pretty much since her last one. She has been super excited to be a big girl. The other kids were excited for her to be a big girl too in hopes that she would stop "throwing fits". Sometimes our little Bug is *really* good at that.

She had planned the whole day for us and awoke at 7am that morning to start the day's festivities. I was far from ready to begin the day that early. She got a birthday song, hug, kiss, and got sent back to bed for a bit. She was too excited to sleep, but at least she tried.

We played games in the morning and got ready for our day. Cary took off work early and we started our adventure. We went to Farm Country at Thanksgiving Point. Bug has been dreaming of riding those horses since last year. She seriously talked about it all the time. There were so many new babies at the Farm and Bug squealed with delight each time she saw a new one. We were there for quite a while running from here to there and I loved watching the kids enthusiasm.

After we visited each animal about ten times it was time to go.

We bought dinner and took it to the park. We took the cake and ice cream, party stuffs, and the pinata! all to the park. Our whanau joined us and made it a perfect evening. The cousins all played together wonderfully.
Gabby actually busted the pinata open and unleashed all the goodies inside. Mad. Scramble.

We also did the little champagne poppers that shoot out all the streamers. Crack. UP. I don't know who liked them more--the adults or the kidlets. :)

We finished the day at home and Bug was finally able to unwrap all of her pressies. She was so excited for her stuffs and fell asleep quickly after everything had calmed down around her. I love love love watching her joy and excitement as it oozes from every little stinky part of her.

Now.....for the FIVE things I LOVES about Bugs!
1. I love how independent you are! I love that you think for yourself...already!
2. I love your sense of humour! You are one of the funniest little girls, ever. You come up with some of the funniest things! You make me giggle!
3. I love your eyes! You have the most byootiful eyes. You show everything in your eyes.
4. I love the way you run! I love that you run with your whole body. It is like you are swimmin gin mid-air sometimes and it cracks me up!
5. I love that you are my daughter-Forever. Heavenly Father sent you to me through an unconventional way, but He did send you and I am awed by His wisdom.

Happy Birthday my darling little girl!!

Now. stop getting any bigger.

Ramblings of a not so lucid Mumma

It's been so busy that I haven't had time to blog like I should be. This is my journal and I really should be better at keeping it up to date. We've had a little going on in our little section of the world and as a mom of five, I don't have a whole lot of quiet down-time. :)
Right now I'm listening to the very loud sounds of two little girls crying because their small TV watching world has ended for the time being. Oh what noise they can make!
We don't watch a ton of television in our home. I would rather the kids be doing something productive; reading, writing, playing outside, anything else. This causes some drama some times in our not so quiet home.
In their birth families, television was used as a babysitter so very much of the time. Sometimes so that the "adults" in the situation could go and do as they pleased without regard to the little ones in the home. Sometimes it was turned on because they didn't know how else to parent their children. TV on = quiet kids. I'm not blaming them, although I do recognize that it seems that way.
I have had so many mixed emotions about birth families lately and I often don't know what exactly I should feel. I read several adoption blogs and their experiences are often far different than what I have experienced in adopting my girls or my three that we are in the process of adopting now. I realize that it is different when the children are in foster care, rather than placed for adoption at birth. I have sympathy and compassion for these families that gave birth to my children, somewhere in my heart. Unfortunately that is sometimes replaced with anger and contempt.
Cary and I feel that Gab and Bug have always been meant to be *our* girls. Honestly, it doesn't feel as though we adopted them. Maybe that's one of the blessings of being sealed in the temple as an eternal family. They do have scars, both physical and emotional, of their lives previous. It is so maddening that these tiny little girls have endured such pain and will carry that with them. I think, though, that those scars are fading, and in time I hope they will fade completely. We're blessed to be their Mumma and Daddy, even when they are howling. ;)

We have started the process of adopting our other three kiddos. The adoption will happen some time in June. Being older it has been harder for them. It was monumental when they were actually able to say that they wanted to be adopted by Cary and I. We have never pushed them and have allowed them time to be angry and to grieve. Losing my Daddyo has given me a better perspective about the loss they are feeling. I think the adoption day itself will be a difficult one for them, but I hope one day they are able to look back on it and realize that it gave them a chance they might have never had otherwise.

I'm excited to be able to actually post photos of them and share them with everyone.

We were out shopping yesterday, as a family(yes, it is so much easier when all of us go), and this lovely little woman stopped all of us next to the frozen potatoes. She looked at me and smiled sweetly. "Excuse me, but I wanted to tell you that you have such beautiful children!", she said. This totally took me off guard and after I had corralled the boys in front of the buggy I smiled back at her and thanked her for the kind words. She repeated herself and looked at Cary and myself. "You both are beautiful as well. Such a beautiful, beautiful family." Cary was bewildered and I was slightly embarrassed. I thanked her again and told her she was very kind as we parted. I looked at all of my kids and smiled. I do have beautiful children.I am blessed to have them and I love each of them. Even when they are howling.
Right? Um, Right.