Where do I even start? So much has happened over the last week. I guess I will start from the beginning. Friday, 29 June, I went out for a walk during lunch time. Before I could reach the main road, my phone started ringing. It was my caseworker calling to tell me that she had a possible placement for me, an 8 month old baby girl. As my caseworker was telling me about the case, she informed me that this baby was pre-adoptive meaning that the plan was for her to be adopted by the family who took her in to foster. My heart dropped, at this time I am not sure if I want to adopt and to know that going into this placement… I just couldn’t do it. I was so sad, but I turned the placement down. I know the right family would welcome that little one so quickly. Someone who knows in their heart that adoption is their next step. Once I turned the placement down, my caseworker told me that she had another opportunity for me and to hear her out. Well, I was walking and my phone was breaking up really badly so I couldn’t hear a lot of what she was saying. I kept asking her to repeat herself and then my phone went silent. I tried to call her back, but I had no luck… so I started to walk back to my house to get better reception. My caseworker called me back and explained that she had a foster family that needed respite care for an 18 year old while her foster mom went on vacation. “WHAT??!!” You wan ME to keep an 18 year old? That’s a grown woman. What will two grown woman do in one house… who will win and be alpha dog (of course me)? LOL! I told her I would do it. I don’t know how to explain in, but in my gut… I knew it would be okay. She would be arriving on 4 July. (And to explain children in care can go on vacation with you, her mom was taking a girls trip and the family was going on a family trip the next month).
I was extremely nervous to meet this “kid” I mean, I haven’t been around teenagers since I was one! AND by nature I am really shy, so I wondered how I would interact with her. Well, I prepared the guest room and made a special space for her to hang out and watch TV in the basement. Then I waited…. She arrived around 1:30p on 4 July. Her foster mom (FM) told me she would be there by 11a (so now I know all placements are late… no matter if they are coming from the department or another family. LOL!) When the FM and the Dear Daughter walked in the door, I did not know who was who… LOL! The dear daughter was so tall! My anxiety spiked! She’s bigger than me!! I showed her around the house and then we sat down and talked. She really is a great young lady. We went to the Bowie Baysox game to watch fireworks. It worked out because she had never been to a baseball game before and she really enjoyed it.
Thursday, she hung in the house ALL DAY. I tried to get her to go out… but she was in love with my firestick. LOL! I think she told me she watched over 25 movies (not including tv shows) while she was with me. LOL! Thursday night I watched a movie with her… we had a good day. Friday, I took her bowling along with a friend of mine. She complained a bit, but in the end… she had a good time. Saturday, we went to Dave and Busters with a friend and her daughter they also invited us to their house later to watch a movie on the lawn. She really enjoyed that, she said she never watched a movie outside under the stars. Sunday came, she didn’t want to go to church or really leave the house… so we just hung out. I didn’t really have any drama with her. When I explained things that baffled me, friends that are mothers of teenagers told me, “that’s just teenagers.” Oh okay… LOL! She left around 9:30p and I was relived! Back to ME and my schedule… I don’t have to worry about anyone!! YAY! Boy was that short lived…
Monday, 9 July I get a call from my caseworker for a 5 month old baby girl. She tells me about her case and asks me the popular question… “would you accept the placement?” Yeah, sure. So she tells me a CPS worker would call me to let me know when I can expect her to be dropped off. To be honest, I didn’t think she would call. A family member usually steps up to keep babies out of the “system.” So I went about my day, around 11a the CPS worker told me that she was going to bring the baby at 2:00p. 2:00 comes and goes, 2:30, 3:00, 3:30… no baby so I figure she wasn’t coming. 4:00p she arrives. The CPS worker gives me so much information that I’m like “WHAT??!” The entire drop off took about 30 minutes. I called my mom and said, “Now what?” LOL! This little baby is smiling and looking at me. My mom comes over after work and helps me bathe her and dress her for bed (which is a joke cause the girl is a night owl)!
Tuesday was a flurry of trying to take care of her and find a daycare that had an opening for an infant. Side note, infant care is toooooooo expensive! Whew! I visited one in home daycare… I did not feel comfortable. Wednesday I went to my local center… it was nice, but way too expensive. Thursday, I went to a center about two miles from my house…. I really liked it an enrolled her, so hopefully she will start week after next.
She also came to me without a sleep schedule. The first two nights were rough! I called my cousin and asked her how she got her babies to sleep through the night. She gave me the magically tips (lol!) and they worked! She slept through the night two nights in a row!
I’ve had friends come visit, bring food, bring clothes, sit with her while I run out for an hour, call and “check-in” and offer much needed advice. It has all been great! I did get a little overwhelmed one morning and cried, my mom said “that’s motherhood.” I miss being able to do what I want when I want. LOL! But grateful for friends that have helped me (and offered to help me) get a break! Special thanks to my mom, who has been an extraordinary “Aunt B!”
I still haven’t gotten everything from DSS to get her enrolled in daycare, doctor visits, social worker (for her), that process has been an exercise in patience… really. HELP ME HELP HER! LOL! But I am doing my best to keep the little one safe and happy.
On Sunday, I am getting another respite placement of TWO three year olds! I accepted this respite before I got the call for the baby. Please pray for me! It’s only for one day, but 3 kids and I am a newbie… yikes! LOL!
This little one is THE BEST. Her smile is great! Everywhere we go… people fall in love with her. She has the best spirit. I don’t know how long she will be with me, but right now… I am truly taking in the idea of being “mom”… better known as CC :-).