This past week was our “panel week”, instead of what is scheduled as Week #5 in the PRIDEbook. We had several guests: a kinship-care mom, an adoptive mom, and a foster couple. Each of them shared their stories with us, and it was so exciting to hear how things had gone for each family.
One thing they emphasized is that things always take time, especially when it comes to adoption. Whether it’s because things are tied up in court, or caseloads are numerous, the process is definitely not quick.
The guests that made the most impact on me were the couple that foster. They have 3 biological children, and have had a total of 4 foster babies in their house. One is still living with them, one is currently a newborn in the hospital, and two have been adopted by other families. They exuded love for the children in their care. It was really neat to hear how much they love each child, and even how they deal with the loss that comes up when children are transitioned to an adoptive family. Knowing that we will be working closely with a foster family at some point in the future, I mentioned to my husband that I would love it to be this family.
I was interested to hear how closely families stay in touch with foster families. In planning for an adoption, not only are we looking at how much contact we may be maintaining with a birth family, we also need to consider how much contact we might maintain with a foster family. Each caregiver in a child’s life is an important part of their life, and it’s so important to remember that we need to keep those relationships going, as long as it’s in the best interests of the child.
Our two oldest children also had a kids-only session with one of our instructors. She discussed what adoption would mean to each of them, and I think they really benefited from talking about it with another adult. And, they were very impressed that she had 3 boys, all older than them, and all of whom were adopted. One of our children is still a little resistant to the idea, but I think the session opened his eyes just a bit, and gave him a different perspective.
It was a very informative session and I think all of us learned a lot!