There’s a beginning and an end to everything. It’s one of the natural rules of life. Foster care is no exception. But, how do you know when it’s time to hang up the license and be done?
On a warm sunny afternoon in May, 2012, we stood in a stuffy courtroom in downtown Indianapolis, before a judge, and family and friends, declaring that we wanted to be our son Sam’s forever parents. It was an exciting day for us. We had stood in that very courtroom for 2 other adoptions in year’s previous. Our little man was glowing that day. At only 3 years old, he knew what was happening and he was excited.
It’s something you might expect will happen when you begin the foster care journey, but still find yourself unprepared for. Strong emotions. How do you navigate the ups and downs, twists and turns, and unending roller coaster ride that foster parenting can often become?
Our first-born daughter was a private adoption and a fairly normal baby. She even began sleeping through the night before she was 3 months old. It wasn’t long before our weariness as new parents began to drift away and we were back to normal, as normal as being a new parent can be.
It’s a common question adoptive and foster parents ask. “How do I handle having a relationship with my child’s birth parent?” In-spite of the fear, confusion, and sometimes awkward situations that come from birth family relationships, we’ve discovered some practical ways to have a healthy relationship.
There’s a verse in the Bible that often echoes in my mind. It’s found in Romans chapter 8 and it says, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Powerful words, right? After all, peace is something we’re all chasing. It’s something we all want. For me, this brief sentence is a model for life. I want to live at peace with every person on the planet. Including my children’s birth parents.