This post has been a long time coming, and when it's one of those posts that has raw emotion attached to it I have a hard time gathering them all into a recognizable group of words.
Last month Christian had his Thanksgiving Program at school. It was so fun to walk into the cafeteria and be a part of the whole experience . . . relatives spilling from the cafeteria tables to the overflow chairs to the standing, videotaping ones in the back. It goes without saying how cute little Bubba was, of course - the pictures don't do it justice. He had been practicing his part for weeks - we had taped it on the front door and he had to say it every time he walked outside "ha ha ha, he he he, you're the funniest purple turkey I ever did see". He did great, I got all choked up looking at him up there. There were some kids who had 7+ relatives there to watch them - grandparents, cousins, aunts, etc. And I looked up and saw those little beaming brown eyes on me and I just wanted to burst. At this moment I was the only adult there for him. His mom had to work and I know he's had other amazing foster parents, but I was still the only one there that day -- after he sang he ran down the bleachers and beelined it for me and gave me a HUGE hug. He said, "When I was lookin down atcha it made me so happy I wanted to cry." And you know, I've had some really hard times as a foster mom and some misgivings (I haven't been the best foster mom in the world) but at that moment I was totally reminded WHY I do this, and that moment made it worth it. That moment was worth the world to me.
Two or three months ago I probably would have gladly sold the foster kids on ebay to the highest bidder (esp the two-year old) but they have a way of getting their little sticky hands wrapped around your heart. This week they have their final court date and we are starting to transition them back home with their mom. She gets them almost half of the week from here on out - and I only have six weeks tops left with 'em. I thought I would be really relieved when this time came - I get my life back, the ability to dictate my own schedule, no more poopy diapers, etc. But I have just been one big bundle of mixed emotions - it's going to be a lot harder than I thought it would be to have them go back . . . I'll get over it pretty easily . . . but I know one little redheaded three-year-old that will be heartbroken to lose siblings. And that breaks my heart!
Anyways, I know I love these two rugrats - and I know they love me, too. But I know they love their own momma more - and that she loves them more than I can. The biological ties that bind are a lot stronger than I thought they ever were. So during this Christmas Season I'm gonna hug my three little ones a lot tighter and closer than usual, and I'll look back with fondness on these last six months -- despite the fact it's been one of the biggest trials of my life. I'll miss you Bubba & Stina!