It’s your last day in my arms.
I knew we would share one of these dreaded memories but the blow isn’t softened by knowledge of its impending arrival. Regardless of my reservations and fears about your move, you’re still leaving. And the ache of these moments steals the breath from my lungs-even after so many goodbyes.
One decision by a judge who doesn’t know either of us, in a system that is too far gone to fix, triggered a 48-hour countdown to our first steps without each other. Laundry, packing, paperwork, medications, diapers, wipes, formula and the list lengthens as my mind races to everything that needs to be done before you leave. My tear wells are dry for the moment or simply dammed up by my pure exhaustion from checking all of those practical boxes.
But my heart is preparing for the gapping wound of letting go.
Today is filled with all of the “lasts”. The last morning nap, the last drive to the store, the last bath, bedtime and family photo. I’m on guard-keenly aware of every moment that races away from us both.
Your time with me has been a struggle, if I’m honest-and you know I’m a pretty reliable gal in the honesty arena. Between the long commutes for visitation, hospital admissions, and changes in case plan goals, I’ve simply crumbled in the chaos most days. Ours has been a love built in the tumultuous turmoil of wrecked lives. The mangled mayhem has left me angry and bitter in moments-many moments. I’ve forced myself to even like you at times.
Attachment is delicately woven between two people. It’s convoluted and complex-even for foster parents. Especially for foster parents.
But frustration gave way to the gentle nudging of grace and our bond has been driven deep in to my soul. I’m holding on to so many thoughts about your future and contemplating the next stages of your life. Tomorrow could be the closing of our story, but it’s not the end of yours.
There are three truths I am holding onto as my trail of tears finds your face pressed into mine tonight.
1. God will fight your battles for you. When I’m not there to protect you and speak for you and comfort you, I am fully satisfied in his sufficiency to cover you completely.
2. He can do great things with your life without me. Humbling, yes. Does this one even need more words?
3. His love is always enough. His love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on you. It’s the harmony I hum to all of my babies because it’s filled with so much truth.
We’re down to only hours now and soon mere minutes will be left for me to hold you as my own. Incredible hope is on the horizon for one woman. And tomorrow night, she’ll be the one holding you as you slip into slumber.
My arms will be vacant once again.
It’s in these moments that I’m so thankful that God doesn’t need me to do any of this. And you don’t need me either. I want you to need me, but God can do all he has planned for your life without me. He invites me to be a part of something beautiful as I rest confidently in his commands.
And with that promise, I can gently place you in the arms of another mama tomorrow. I can trust his love for you and I can turn and walk away.
He will find you wherever you are and you don’t need my love, because HIS love is always enough.
Kristy and Zach are biological parents to 4 beautiful kiddos under the age of 9. They have called 12 other babies their own since starting their journey as a foster family in the summer of 2012. They say yes to the hard and crazy as they follow Jesus on this journey of surrender and obedience. Kristy loves coffee, good conversation, comfy clothes and Anne of Green Gables. She is assertive and loves change as she learns to thrive in the chaos. Follow Kristy on her personal blog – This Hard Calling.