When I gave my "official" notice to my licensing agency concerning Pumpkin, it didn't come as a surprise. They knew back in January I was nearing my end. The fact that I held on six months longer was a bonus I guess. But in the back of Rainbow's mind, she was already trying to find a suitable home for Pumpkin to move to.
In my little world of unicorns and lollipops, I envisioned Pumpkin moving to another home licensed by our agency. I wanted her to stay close to our home so that she could maintain all the services I've got in place for her. I seriously want her to have a trauma-free move. (The move won't be easy on her. But I doubt she'll respond much in the long run.) If she could keep the same doctors and therapists, it would all be OK.
I knew this was probably not going to be a reality though...to the point that I questioned my decision to be "done". I really want what is best for Pumpkin. I made it clear to my agency that finding a good home was much more important to me than the actual "30 days". I feared that she would leave our agency and that I'd simply be putting her in the back of some worker's car and saying goodbye forever.
Good news! Good news!!
A family that is licensed by our agency, lives just about five miles away from my house, is very comfortable parenting special needs AND has done respite for Pumpkin in the past has agreed to parent Pumpkin when they get back from their summer vacation. They are going to be gone (out of state) until the first week of September. But honestly...I don't mind at all!! I'm thrilled beyond belief that a family I know and trust has agreed to take over where I need to leave off.
I've finally solved the problem of PT, OT and speech for Pumpkin. In-home services have been located and they should start sometime next week. Pumpkin will get to maintain a relationship with all those therapists. She will have the same neurologist. And, if the new foster family wants, she can continue to see the same family doctor. She will even get to have her foot braces made by the same specialist! The only thing that will change for Pumpkin is the school she attends and the individuals meeting her needs at home. She will even get to continue to be looked after by Rainbow!!
I can make it 'til September. I know I can. As it stands, I may be the foster mom that says goodbye if Pumpkin goes home at the next court hearing in late August. But...if she doesn't (and she shouldn't!), I can trust that the new foster family is capable of meeting all her needs. (Rainbow will see to it! I'm positive of that one!!)
The relief I feel is amazing! Her case is ugly as can be. Everyone I talk to about it - the licensing investigator, the doctor, the lawyers, the social workers, CASA, everyone!! - knows that sending Pumpkin home is NOT safe! But for reasons I'm never going to understand, they can't legally keep her safe. Personally, I think it's bull! And I said so to CASA when I called them to rant today. But I know that my part of her story is almost finished. I will be able to devote more time to Herman, TT, Bart, Dolly and Dude. They need me too!
Extended respite has been approved for me in July so I can go north and not have to bring Pumpkin. Rainbow is actively trying to find a home for those 2 1/2 weeks that we'll be gone.
And Pumpkin is healing from all the extra seizure activity. She's talking more and she's playing more. That sure does make it easier to care for her on a day to day basis. I'll make it 'til September easy!