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Category: Advocacy

Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysOct. 8, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Would you still love me if…?

Almost 11 years ago, I was told that I had HIV. *** As an unemployed, broke college student looking for an easy way to make cash, I thought that donating plasma would be just the thing to put a little change in my pockets. So, I headed off to the plasma donation center. The process went smoothly, and I left thinking that perhaps I could become a regular plasma donor in lieu of finding a “real” job. The girl at the front desk did remind me that the center would call me after completing some testing to ensure that I was […]

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Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingSep. 14, 2018

Forgotten Friday | It’s not my story to tell.

The two-year-old girls currently living in our home are the exact same height with blonde hair and only a 0.2 pound difference in their weight. I’m a biological mom to one and a foster mom to the other. They’re five months apart, and there has not been a day that I’ve gone into public with them when I’ve not been asked by a random stranger (if not 3-4 random strangers), “Are they twins?”  Usually, I politely smile and say, “No they’re not,” and the little girls continue stuffing their faces while I continue stuffing the grocery cart. My brief answer suffices […]

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Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingSep. 7, 2018

Forgotten Friday | How to Successfully Advocate for Your Children

Your job as a parent is to make sure your children receive the best possible services. Whether this is within your school system, your pediatricians office, or your family therapist’s office. You do this because you care. But what do you do when you feel like you can’t adequately communicate the needs of your child? You’ve probably experienced something like this when speaking to a professional: “It doesn’t look like there’s anything wrong with him?” “I understand you believe she has a special need, but she is a great student, well-liked, and makes good grades. We are not sure she […]

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Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysJul. 16, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Let Us Stop the Talk and Do Something

I get so discouraged when I hear Christians bash others and talk about all the problems we face in the world, but don’t seem to really do much more than talk. I used to pray that God would feed the hungry, or do this or that, but now I pray that He will guide me to do whatever I’m supposed to do. I used to pray for answers, but now I’m praying for strength. I used to believe that prayer changes things but now I know that prayer changes us and we change things. –Mother Teresa God has called my […]

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Advocacy, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingJun. 22, 2018

Forgotten Friday | When Doing Good Isn’t Good

A few years ago, my husband Clint and I were given the amazing privilege of a week-long vacation in Fiji through Clint’s work. While there, we had a very special opportunity to bring some school supplies to children at a local school in need. The children came to our resort to receive the gifts, riding in on a train and singing, no less! Many in our group were eating breakfast as the train pulled in. Those sweet kiddos piled out of the train so that we could take some pics. Then two children came to shake hands with the President […]

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Advocacy, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysMar. 26, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Because Jesus

I’m sitting in a hospital bed a few feet away from a baby that I’ll most likely never watch grow into a toddler. The hiss of oxygen, the alarming monitors and constant stream of visitors in yellow disposable gowns are our current reality. I’m exhausted and my legs hurt. The interrupted sleep is the only thing that reminds me of home. I’ve missed afternoon chats and homework with my big kids, five bedtimes with all of them, hugs and kisses and playtime. Last night, they came up to visit for some face to face time. We enjoyed a delicious hospital […]

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Advocacy, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference Mondays, Vulnerable ParentsMar. 5, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | If Only You Knew

I feel your heavy stares as I pull out my government issued benefits card to pay for the few groceries I have in my cart full of home goods and clothes. I know what you’re thinking, “This is what’s wrong with America!” We give food stamps and welfare to people who use and abuse the system, just like you assumed I was doing. My cart wasn’t filled with necessities to feed my family, it wasn’t overflowing with diapers, wipes, and formula, so you must have thought that I was working the system, taking the hard earned tax payers’ dollars and […]

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Advocacy, Forgotten Fridays, Foster Parenting, Vulnerable ParentsJan. 19, 2018

Forgotten Friday | Birth Parents Are Not the Enemy

I’ll never forget the first phone call we shared. She was very nervous and so was I. She had her stereotypes of folks like me and I had mine of folks like her, but when our lives suddenly collided, everything changed. “Hi Sandra*. I’m Jami.” (*name changed for privacy) Just a few days earlier, I was pacing the floor. I was nervous, excited and clueless about the craziness we were about to step into. When the caseworker pulled up, I ran out to the car and for the first time saw, Dayd (3 yrs) and Bobby (7 mo). Oh Dayd, […]

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Advocacy, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysJan. 15, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Just Mercy.

Through foster care, I have come to mother children of all ages and races. And it’s opening my mind, my heart, my eyes to realities I never knew. It’s shattering my rose-colored glasses. And I’m left searching for a new lens to view and know this world. One that sees past my own privilege. I’m grateful for authors like Bryan Stevenson who share and teach me through books like Just Mercy. He gives a powerful glimpse into the racial bias of America’s justice system. And an inspiring reflection that pulls the reader from devastation to hope. I find myself coming […]

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Advocacy, Forgotten Fridays, Vulnerable ParentsJan. 12, 2018

Forgotten Friday | Connections in Care

I met my first birth mom four years ago. I remember the drive, the feelings and her face. I got her little girl dressed, drove to the mall and unloaded the car with nervous hands and an even shakier heart. As I rounded the corner of the playground where our first meeting was set to take place, I felt my own insecurity surging unsteadily. I was met with emotions that had never even grazed the borders of my mama heart. I watched her face light up as she saw her baby again. She became, in that moment, just another mama. […]

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