I'm having a blast!!!
This sure beats a year ago when I spent entirely too much of my time totally freaked out about the investigation from Hell!!
I've been praying hard that a miracle will be worked on September 9. I am storming the heavens with my very specific request. I know that these children do not have to languish in Care any more. I'm quite sure something could happen despite the fact that so many professionals have reminded me this could take years. I know that God can work miracles and a judge can make things move faster.
These cherubs want to stay with us. They deserve permanency. Even though September seems so far away, I know it is right around the corner. In just five short weeks we will stand in front of the judge yet again. The State will say they need to leave. My lawyer, the cherubs' GAL, the cherubs' AAL, and the cherubs' therapist (Lord willing) will all say they need to stay with us.
In the meantime, I deal with the day to day. Visiting my family is a bit of a trigger for Dolly. She's always very aware of who's who. She knows I'm seeing my mommy and daddy. She knows I'm seeing my sister. And while she simply adores my entire family (and they are quite enamored with her as well), it is a reminder that she has been split from a good deal of family she used to have contact with. The other night I tucked Dolly in to bed and walked out of the room. She promptly started crying!!
I waited a minute. I heard Dude whisper quite loudly, "Shhhhh Dolly, we're supposed to be going to sleep. I'm trying to sleep." But she continued to cry.
I went back in her room to comfort her. Dolly was so sad. We covered all the basics:
- she misses her mommy
- it's OK to miss her mommy
- it's OK to be sad
- it's OK to be happy too (damn...foster care is complicated)
- it's OK to love her mommy
- it's OK to love me too
- I will NEVER leave her
- she is safe
- it's sad that her mommy couldn't keep her safe
- it's OK to love her and miss her anyway
We talked for a long time. I tried to give her words for her fears. Largely she was missing her mom and had a very real, and very valid, fear that we would leave her too. She spent the first 3.5 years of her life being left alone quite a bit I believe. Dolly doesn't remember specifics anymore so none of us know much. But from what I can gather, Dolly was regularly abandoned by her bio mom. I did my best to comfort Dolly.
As the "bigness" of her feelings subsided I decided to reassure her with some information about where she was sleeping. I explained that the bedroom she was in used to be mine when I was a little girl. That brought a smile to her face. Then I reached over to the end of the bed Dude was in and pulled off a stuffed figure that I got as a little girl...the initials of my name. I handed Dolly the letter "L" and told her it was for me (my name). Then I told her it was for Love, and that I would never leave her because I love her so much.
Dude was listening in to all this conversation. Honestly though, he doesn't understand. He has never cried for his first family. Dude quite literally has questioned why Dolly is upset sometimes. Typically he has this look on his face like, "What is your problem Dolly?! It's better here!"
Well, Dude grabbed the stuffed letter "M" - the one for my middle name. I told him what it was but then I had to turn my attention back to Dolly. She was still upset and had started crying again. I pulled her on my lap and we talked some more.
As I was leaving the room though, just a few minutes later, I couldn't help but take a picture of this. Dude had grabbed my "M" and decided that was all he needed to be able to fall asleep. The look of contentment on his face was priceless. He was out cold!!