So, baby girl and I have been together for a little over two weeks now. She seems to be doing really well! She is such a happy girl with bright eyes and a great gummy smile. She is literally a light when she is in a room. I often think about her spirit, how light it is despite what she has been through in her short life. It amazes me how resilient she is, but my caseworker did tell me that I would be amazed at how children in care adapt and thrive in the right environment.
It has been a world wind the past two weeks, but we are falling into a great rhythm. Last week was very busy for us. Baby girl FINALLY got a social worker assigned to her and I was able to get her placement letter! A placement letter is a very important document that states that you (the foster parent) are providing care for the child in care. It gives you access to EVERYTHING!! In my last post I spoke about the difficulty I had finding a daycare for baby girl, I did find a great facility (praise God)… but in order for baby girl to enroll I had to take her to the doctor… and of course in order to take her to the doctor, I needed the placement letter. So, I received the placement letter on Tuesday, took baby girl to the doctor on Wednesday. I had to show out a bit in the doctors office because they wanted me to drop off the daycare forms and pick them up in 3 days. I explained that I couldn’t wait 3 days, and although I know it is not their concern, I had already waited for over a week to get the placement letter and I couldn’t wait any longer to get baby girl enrolled into daycare. I tried to remain calm, but my frustration was at an all time high I could hear my voice rising as I exclaimed, “It’s only 5 questions!!”. I was not frustrated with the doctors office, just in general because of the slowness of the process. My plan was to just beg the doctor to have mercy and fill out the forms when I got into the examination room, but the receptionist asked the nurse to fill out the forms for me (Thank God!).
Thursday we met her social worker. Seems nice, don’t have too much to say about her yet. In general, I feel like DSS is very unresponsive. I have asked several questions and I rarely get a response. We also met up with her grandmother… this visit went well… grandma, although kind… still had to point out something I failed to do (bring a toy for her to play with to entertain her during the visit… I have a reason why rarely put toys in her bag… but I digress), but overall she opened up a bit more to me. As I explained in my last post, family visits make me very uncomfortable. I gave baby girl’s grandmother the social workers card and told her to contact her to set up the visits at the department in the future. I don’t like feeling like I am the one responsible for coordinating the visits. Each week, I have been calling the grandmother to set up the visits… but I am not doing that anymore. If grandma wants to see baby girl, she can call me. I do not want to initiate the call this week. It’s Tuesday, I will wait to see what happens. Again, I do not like family visits… the actual visit is okay… I just don’t like being in “charge” of the when and where. Can the department do that? They act like they don’t care.
On Friday, we went to the WIC office. I am so glad that another foster parent blog emphasized using WIC. Baby girl is eligible as a child in foster care. Dealing with the WIC office was not fun, but when I got to Target to purchase her formula… whoa!! I am so glad I had that benefit. $207 for formula… I bought 8 cans, she is eligible for 11. I was so happy that I did not have to pay for that out of pocket. She came to me with 4.5 cans of formula and in less than two weeks that was gone. I was down to the last bottle when I bought the formula Sunday.
Saturday, I took baby girl with me to the reggae wine festival. She had a great time people watching (my kind of girl, lol!) and making everyone in attendance fall in love with her… lol!
Finally, we started day care yesterday ( Mon 7/23). On Friday, I took her in to finalize her paperwork and when we were leaving, I got misty eyed!!! LOL! Why??? I have no clue. Baby girl had been my little buddy for 2 weeks, it would be strange for her to leave me all day. She had a good first day at daycare, the teachers said she did a great job and of course she was very friendly and played a lot. I was that mom, the center director had to say, “bye mom… she’s in good hands.” That was my cue to go. LOL! I did stalk her a bit on the app they provided and I know she is in good hands. When I went to pick her up, she was sitting in a bouncy seat. As soon as she saw me, she started smiling, cooing and kicking her feet. I felt good. She recognized me!!
People still ask how will I take it when she leaves. It will be very hard, but I know that I am doing what I am supposed to do for her at this moment. Only the Lord knows how long she will be with me… and I cherish each moment and try to do my best for her.
Personally for me, I am still getting in my weekly and weekend runs and gym time. I signed baby girl up for the gym, lol! She is a member now… so that I can take advantage of the childcare while I workout. That has been great! Now that she is in daycare, I am able to go to the gym in the morning after I drop her off (thank goodness for a flexible work schedule). Marathon training is no joke! It takes a lot of time and as I am functioning as a single parent at the moment… I am heavily relying on friends and my mom to watch baby while I run. I am very appreciative that they have offered to help me at this time :-). Still so grateful for all the folks that have helped me through gift cards (they have come in handy), offering time to sit with her, and even bringing/sending clothes for baby!! Thank you!! It is so needed!
That’s all for now, can’t think of anything else to say… but if you have any questions… let me know!