After court yesterday, I didn’t want to go home. Not in a dramatic way, but I wanted to be out in nature and surrounded by people. So first we walked in a park, then we went shopping. My husband had our two youngest in the cart, and something distracted me, so I wandered off.
My littlest didn’t, of course, understand that his life had been dramatically altered by a man’s word just hours before. He doesn’t know that in a few days, he’s leaving forever the only home he’s ever known in his 29 months of life: 872 days and counting. I guess it’s a countdown now.
As we shopped, he realized he couldn’t see me, so he began calling out for me.
I offered a fake smile when an older woman poked her head around the corner.
“Is he calling for you?” she asked.
“Don’t worry,” I said, “He’s with his daddy, he isn’t lost.”
“Well, enjoy this then, because he won’t be calling for you for long,” she said with a smile and pushed her cart off.
I stood there, deeply affected by the simple, everyday advice from a likely grandma, the kind of thing my mom probably says to people harmlessly, and the kind of sentiment others have said to me dozens of times as a young mom.
“They don’t stay little forever.”
“Enjoy every moment.”
“Savor the memories when they’re small.”
“They grow up so fast.”
Her wording was unfortunate, as I know my son will soon, indeed, have another face in his mind when he calls for “mommy.” But at the same time, how could I wish for anything but their greatest success in their new relationship? How could my mothering love for this child not pray for him to have the very best future, including an intimate, caring relationship with his mommy?
I do not wish to be replaced, but I know I will be. God’s plan is continuing to unfold before me. I choose to observe it and live in it in faith. The promises are just as real today as they were yesterday morning.
So I will cherish these last few days, and I’m also reminded of a profound truth I read on the blog “Foster the Family”:
Here’s to goodbye.
Tomorrow’s gonna come too soon.
Kelley Rose Waller
Kelley and her husband Matt are Pennsylvania foster parents and have two biological sons. Kelley lives and writes to uplift and glorify the name of Jesus Christ. Her debut novel, The Senator’s Youngest Daughter, was released in 2016. Kelley is a ridiculous fan of science fiction and board games. Read more at www.kelleyrosewaller.com.