January was a really bad month.
Lots of miserable, awful things that I can't talk about.
Fights with Mr. D
Fights with Peter.
Frustration with Susan.
Frustration with the foster system and how slowly things move and how little we are kept up to date on what is going on.
The last week of January was the worst one. All that other stuff happened and then, I went to the dentist. And I needed thousands and thousands of dollars worth of work done. And in the midst of that, my 14 year old dog had some sort of stroke and needed to be put down as she could no longer control her body movements to stand, walk, or eat.
So, I did what any person with a normal, healthy childhood did. I called my Mommy.
And as I did it, as I dialed, as I talked to her about the teeth and the dog and the struggles with kids, as I hung up feeling better, I thought about LT's blog. I've been reading LT a lot lately, working my way through her archives.
What LT repeatedly says she wants more than anything in the world is a Mom. And the foster system failed to give her that, so she is still searching.
I can call my mommy when I have a really bad day and she can make it better--sometimes just by listening while I talk. Children who age out of foster care....children who are in foster care.....can't do that.
As a foster parent, I do my best to be the stand-in mommy for the kids in my care. I think I do that pretty well for O, probably a little less well for L. When L really wants her mommy, I know that the only thing that I can do is be there as much as she wants me to be, listen when she wants to talk, and love her whether she wants me to or not. I hope it's enough.
It's unlikely that L and O will ever age out--their mother is working hard on her plan, there are other family members stepping in and offering to be their family caregiver--and even if they do, they have this experience of their mother not walking away from them, so I don't think they will ever been where LT is in terms of the feelings of rejection by everyone who should have cared about them.
I don't know where I'm going with this post. I wanted my Mommy today. And I called her. And I felt better.
It saddens me to know how many children there are for whom that simple moment of receiving comfort where it is expected is out of their reach.