Muddle Mayhem

Decluttering my home – and life – one piece of junk at a time…

My Journey to Fostering

Hubby and I have been talking about fostering for years… since 2004 actually. It’s always been a lifelong dream of mine. So you can imagine my disappointment when my hubby didn’t share in my excitement and desire to fill our home with ‘other’ children. He just couldn’t see himself fall in love with a child he would have to let go some day. I was also broken-hearted when we found out we could not have any children of our own. But what could I do? I learned to live with my shattered dreams but every year I reminded my hubby to let me know if he ever changed his mind.

In 2006, I was the Admin Officer of our local Navy League Cadets when we accepted a young boy, Timmy*, into our program. Without a diagnosis yet, it was obvious he had some struggles and I took a special liking to him. Coincidently, I accepted another part time admin position with a respite agency, the same agency Timmy’s parents were clients with. They were desperately looking for a respite worker for Timmy and his sister Valerie*.

I met with the parents discussing my interest in the position. They were thrilled especially since Timmy and I already had a bond from cadets. I fast tracked through the applications and became their respite worker within weeks. Spending time with Timmy and Valerie was very rewarding, not only for me but for the whole family. I would come over to their home one evening a week and they would spend a weekend with us in our home. Timmy was eventually diagnosed with PDD-NOS while Valerie had hypopituitarism. She required many medications including a daily injection plus tube-feeding. This meant a lot of training for me to care for her but I loved every minute of it.

A memory that I will always cherish is taking them to hockey games. Their parents continuously complained about not being able to take Valerie out to events since she would have meltdowns. We started out taking her in for a couple of minutes, and then a full period. I would take her out to the car during the second period for a bolus feeding and by third period, she was cheering on ANY goals! 🙂 It didn’t take her long to get used to the outings. One night we took mom and dad to see a game with their children. Mom was in tears to see her daughter banging on the glass cheering on the teams.

Now hubby was falling in love with these kids as well, even though they were ‘other’ kids and not our own. He enjoyed spending time with them just as much as I did. I eventually took on more children but in 2008, we moved away and I started longing for more children in my home again. It didn’t take long for hubby to admit he missed them. He missed them enough to try out foster care.

You can imagine I was on the phone immediately and scheduled our information session. We received the application form and were soooo excited to get the ball rolling. However there were obstacles we needed to overcome first. One of those obstacles was the clutter in our home. And the other was my hubby’s uncertainty. He wanted to foster but was still afraid.

Fast forward to the summer of 2011, when my hubby and I talked about it again and he agreed we’d follow through this time!

We decided we would send our application in after Christmas – January 16th. We simply want to avoid going through the home study and application stress during the holiday chaos. With a four month training and approval process, we expect to fill our home with foster kids in May – in about 9 months. To make things even more exciting, we decided to treat this waiting period as a pregnancy 🙂 It’s kind of exciting and our children are ecstatic!

I will keep you all posted on our journey from here on. Fingers crossed.

* Names have been changed to protect privacy.

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One response to “My Journey to Fostering

  1. Muddler says:

    Spoke to my sister about our plans yesterday. Although she’s always known about my desire, I never felt as if I had her support in this dream – and that’s big for me. She mentioned a concern and we discussed it. I am soooo happy to report that I do have her support. Love you babe!

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