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Category: Make a Difference Mondays

Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysOct. 22, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Can I ask you something? (Part 4)

Where are you on adoption? Honestly, we’re exactly where we were the last time you asked. The government moves at its own plodding pace; we just have to be patient (and it’s not always easy). In some ways, I think it’s been good for L. to have more time to process his adoption. In other ways, the drawn-out transition has been hard on both of us. Of course, once things are finalized, we’re going to Disney World, and that can’t happen soon enough for either of us! When can you say what happened to him/show his face/share his full name? […]

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Foster Parenting, Make a Difference Mondays, Prayer, Reunification, Vulnerable ParentsOct. 15, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Finding Joy in the Little Things

Something about babies always makes people smile. Their supposed innocence, adorable baby rolls, toothless grins, contagious laughter, and the freshness of their smooth skin and simple being all in one miniature person. Joy. Smiles. Perfect strangers will reach out and touch (and even kiss) babies they have never seen before. Once, I had even witnessed a stranger sit herself down at the table with Baby S and her birth mom to start a conversation. What makes that ok? Somehow, personal space doesn’t exist for babies. As I sit at yet another birth parent visit in a quiet mall food court […]

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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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Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysOct. 1, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | I love you, too.

Before foster parenting, I can’t remember a time when I said “I love you” and it wasn’t returned. When there wasn’t an immediate expression of similar affection. An “I love you, too.” But in foster care, I am learning love isn’t so simple or so easy. Kids already have parents they love. And the love they know often looks different than the love I have been shown. But no matter what it looks like, it is still love and it is still theirs to keep. Some kids ache to go back to a love I don’t understand. Others see their […]

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Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 24, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | 5 Reasons Foster Parents Need to Attach to their Foster Child

You bring a child or sibling group into your home for who knows how long. You don’t know very much about them. You work at creating as much calm as you can in the midst of a new normal for everyone. Parent visits, school work, possibly counselor visits, and behavioral challenges make the transition challenging. You focus on providing as much as care and support as you can for your new foster child. Yet at the same time, you guard your heart. If you have had much training, you know that your new foster child will come with some attachment struggles. But […]

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Adoption, Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 17, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Everyone Has a Story: Heartbreak and Hope, Part 2

(To read part one, click here) “She changed her mind.” I couldn’t believe it. I knew that this was so very common in domestic adoptions and yet, in this case, baby boy would immediately be put into the foster care system, and his mom did not want this. She had shared this with me before, yet she changed her mind. And her decision was final. I looked over at my friends who were standing outside the nursery. With so many emotions in my heart and tears in my eyes, I slowly walked to them and told them that it seemed like […]

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Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 10, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Sometimes I forget she isn’t really mine

My heart broke a little yesterday morning while sitting at my kitchen table during our county social worker’s monthly visit. Our agency’s case manager also met with us at the same time. She mentioned the likelihood of reunification and I nodded as usual, contributing to the conversation how the birth parent visits were going. The next court date won’t be for another few months, but it suddenly hit me that our sweet baby girl, with whom we all have quite fallen in love, might be leaving us sooner than later. Waking up to her morning giggles and putting her down, […]

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Children in Foster Care, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference Mondays, Ways to ServeSep. 3, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Sheltered

24 children. All ages 8 and under. Taken from their families, their surroundings, and any and all familiarity they might have. That was the reality for all of these children in our county this week alone. They are sent many times to foster families almost immediately, but there are some that end up in shelters. Why? Because homes are full, the children have more needs than some families can supply, or because they belong to a large sibling group and many people cannot take in 3-5 children at a time. So this is where these precious ones go. What’s a […]

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Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 27, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Ignorance is bliss.

We’re getting more calls. And quite frankly this is one of the worst parts of foster care. When we hear that a child needs help but then realize that we can’t step in. That we have to say “no.” I know there are dozens of legitimate reasons to say that we can’t accept a placement, a child. Whether practical logistics or emotional restraints stand in the way, it’s far better for everyone for foster parents to know their limits. But somehow reason never seems to resonate with my heart. Partly because I only get to hear the need and never […]

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Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 20, 2018

Make a Difference Monday | Warning: You Might Be Dancing the Wrong Dance

Danielle and I took dance lessons several years ago which we both enjoyed. But let me tell you learning how to dance with a partner is very challenging unless you’re just a natural. I am one of those guys who can’t dance very well. I have okay rhythm, but my challenge is sustaining it. So I usually end up doing my own dance which gets me “the look” from Danielle. We learned different dance steps like the Country Two Step and the Triple Two Step. We learned the Waltz and the Jitterbug. When I danced with Danielle (she is a […]

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