Blog Post – From Karen, Foster Change Member:
I am sure like most of you, I get asked the questions all the time “How could you get involved in Foster Care? Don’t you worry about getting too attached? What if it affects your biological children negatively?” and the questions go on and on from there…. Like most, I still don’t always have the correct answers at times, but how do you explain following your heart to love children who need it the most?!
Your reason “why” might vary differently then mine, but I am sure that the outcome is the same. Loving children from hard places is a calling. Sometimes it can be a selfish reason like the fulfillment of becoming a parent or it might be just because you know that there are so many children out there that need a safe place to call “home” even if it’s temporary.
So, the fear of becoming “too attached” is something you’re able to handle simply knowing that you are giving children a sense of family maybe for the first time. Those children didn’t ask for their circumstances nor them being ripped from the only family they knew. Yet, in their grieving comes behaviors that can seem too hard to handle, tantrums that can rock the foundation of your family, and leaving you questioning why you got involved in the first place.
I have learned over the years that being involved in foster care is a beautifully broken road to travel on. There are days and moments where it all seems worth it. Then, there are days when the storms hit and so many emotions flood in. How can loving children be so hard?! Your sense of reality now becomes shaken with behaviors, therapy visits, doctor visits, dealing with their parents, the uncertainty of how long that child will be in your home, court appointments, caseworker visits, and the list goes on and on. Now, you’re finding a new sense of normal just to love on a child and praying that you are doing the right things by that child.
I am convinced that loving these children, no matter for how long, is worth it. It is worth showing up for that child when no one else will, being their voice even when they can’t, being that soft place for them to land, being that person who teaches them basic life skills, being their cheerleader, and being that shoulder to cry on. Being that person to catch their first smile, maybe rejoice in them learning how to feed themselves, or learn how to regulate their emotions properly.
In loving these children, the reward isn’t always outward. To be honest, it mostly isn’t seen. The countless hours you pour into them can seem useless until the day you can see the difference in that child. You may not know the exact moment or reason why for the change, but just know that you showing up makes all the difference in the world.
In closing, I am sure that you all have heard the saying ” Helping one person might not change the world…but it could change the world for that one person” So, be encouraged my fellow friends, that we all our being world changers in our own ways. Embrace the hard moments because out of them brings forth the beautiful ones. Decide to focus on all that is good in stepping into this new world for most of us and celebrate the good moments no matter how big or small they are. For each moment is a big one in the lives of these dear children.