A few days ago, Face Book graced me with a blast from the past…a post I wrote on our paper pregnancy. It was written by a fostering rookie. It made me want to pat that innocent, starry-eyed writer on the head and say, “Well now, isn’t that sweet?” But it was this…this paragraph that took the cake:
….This time, we are linking our arms as a family to take care of a baby in need, a baby we may not get to keep forever. We are okay with that. We are okay with the potential heartbreak…and this is why. For as long or as little as we get to love on our new baby, for one moment in time, the world will be right for that precious one. And we are honored to be the ones to bring a moment of light into a child’s life.
Ummm, “…the world would be right for that precious one”??? Uh, we’re not that great. We get a lot of things right. But this parenting thing is a crazy train, and at various points, it has brought out our worst. Our very worst. In light of this realization…our focus in fostering has shifted…unexpectedly…beautifully.
Once upon a time, Phil and I hoped to save children from abuse and neglect. And we hoped to do this by providing a safe, stable home. But the thing is, our safe, stable home suffers from time to time. Periods of instability. Periods of brokenness. We’ve realized that within our own brokenness, we are in no position to save anybody. But we can help. We can reach out to hurting, scared, broken mothers and promise to be gentle with their children. We can pray blessings over the lives of the families torn apart by poverty. We can speak words of encouragement to parents who are lost…who sought to escape despair…only to find more despair at the hands of their addictions. We can seek reconciliation…for hearts…for relationships…for lives. And yes…we can love and hold and breathe hope into babies…building secure attachments…or at least laying the groundwork for such.
Our once upon a time is wiser today. Today, we fight just as hard for the mamas as for the babies. Today, our hearts beat just as furiously for the mamas as for the babies. Today, our hope has grown from healing children to healing families…to crazy plot twists with glorious resolutions.
Through it all, we are ever grateful to be a part. Here’s to our good fortune…the opportunity to joyride on this spectacular journey.