In this world, our children will struggle, oftentimes more than typically developing children. How do we help them, or empower them, to face these difficult situations? Here are some tips…
Foster care and adoption are difficult. There will be hard parts to our child’s story. It is inevitable. Our children will see some things in their past as normal and others as difficult. It isn’t for us to decide which parts are difficult for our children. This is why it is so important that our children feel empowered to deal with the hard parts. Here are some things we can do to help:
This journey is hard. There’s no question. When we signed up for it, we never knew loving children from hard places would take so much out of us. We didn’t realize that, even when we felt empty, we’d have to keep going. But that’s what real love is all about.
It’s a cold and dreary day in Central Indiana. I’ve got a little extra time on my hands so I decide to do something I don’t often do. Go to the gym. I need it. It’s been a long and harsh winter, with plenty of sitting around and waiting for the weather to clear, plus I pay for a monthly membership fee. I cringe even as I type those words.
We all need hope on the journey of foster care, adoption and special needs parenting. But, often, it feels so far away. We start to wonder, “Will I never find any?”
Hope. Just saying the word fills you with a myriad of emotions, doesn’t it? You either feel a peace that passes all understanding because you’ve discovered hope, or you’re struggling to breathe because you’ve lost hope altogether. Sometimes we look at life, and the difficult circumstances we are presently in with our children, and feel as though we’ll never find our way through this. But what if we told you, there is hope. And, you can find it!
If you’re a spouse and your husband just won’t get on board with adoption, it’s easy to become frustrated. But, there’s a better way to approach the subject.
As I mentioned in last week’s episode, in the early years of our adoption journey, I was pretty resistant to the whole idea. Not because I was against adoption, I just didn’t understand it. In last week’s podcast, we talked about the ‘why’ behind the resistance that many men have felt as they’ve begun the adoption journey. On today’s episode, we’re concluding this 2-part series by discussion practical ways spouses can help their husbands overcome the resistance he may feel.
In the trenches of parenting, it’s often easy to see only your trials, or current difficult circumstances. You feel like giving up, throwing in the towel, and calling it quits quite often. But your story, and your child’s, isn’t over yet…
My family loves antique stores. I mean LOVES them! Our local antique store is a compilation of three large barns connected through walkways. We could spend all day wandering through the booths. To watch our family on a typical day you might mistake us for an ADHD medication advertisement. We are active, impulsive and a little unfocused. That’s just us parents!
In the 9 years that we served as foster parents, we met very few case workers who were active foster parents. We always found this odd, especially since we were relying on them to give us guidance and support on the difficult road of foster care.
I get it. I really do. The foster care system is a mess, and case work is hard, regardless of the state you’re from. It’s hard to find a case worker who is not both grossly overworked and grossly underpaid. The turnover rate is beyond measure.
In our time as foster parents we met some fantastic case workers with energy, passion to love children, and a dream change the system. With nearly everyone like this, however, we became sad because we knew they wouldn’t last. We were certain that in a year, or less, they would move on to greener pastures, better paying jobs, and fresh opportunities, because it was too much. Or too little.
The journey of foster care is not free of pain, nor deep hurt, in the least bit. But allowing yourself to feel the emotions that come from loving a child from a difficult place may fill you up more than you realize.
20 years ago.
“Let go!” the camp counselor shouted encouragingly from 100 feet below. With one hand gripping the zip line tightly and the other hand securely fastened to the tower, I stared at the tops of the trees below. Adrenaline coursed through me and my senses were completely on alert. The warm July breeze on my face, the creek of the wooden stairs I had just climbed. I had a choice to make. Let go or hold tighter. My muscles ached with the thought and my knuckles had turned white with fear. Boldly jump or slink back down 10 stories to admit defeat to my fellow campers. “Let go,” I heard the trees whisper. “Let go,” the wind whistled. “Let go,” my heart thumped, and I did.