Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A Nice Change

So here’s a little update in our life as Husband & Wife. It’s kind of big news for us.

We're in the process of becoming Foster Parents so that we can foster to adopt.

We have told a few people, I’m pretty sure most of our family knows, but this is our formal announcement.

This was a big decision for us to start this process, which obviously should be for anyone. One friend mentioned they were taking classes to be certified to take in assisted living adults, but that there were classes to do foster care. It set off a little spark in my head and we thought about it for a week, prayed about it for a day, and then we were watching LDS General Conference and suddenly we had our answer! And then our problem was working up the guts to do it. So it took a lot to get us to this point. When we first got married, Husband and I had a few conversations that I distinctly remember having still, about our plans as a family. We wanted to have a few children of our own, and then add to our family by adopting. Things have not worked out for us that way, which in all honesty has been discouraging, but Husband and I still have each other and we feel like this is the next best option for our family. We haven’t given up on having children of our own in the traditional way, that’s an experience I hope we don’t have to miss out on, but it doesn’t matter how we have children join our family because I know we will love any child we are given the opportunity to raise no matter what. Husband and I are meant to be parents.

As far as the process that goes into becoming certified Foster Parents; we took our classes last fall, we’ve done our paperwork and Live Scans, and now we’re getting into the home study portion. We’re moving through the process a little slowly, but that’s how it’s working out for us. Husband is coming to an end in his career in the Coast Guard, has already started college full time, and has just started his new job last week, so our home life is transitioning and we needed things to go this way.

Once the home study is complete, we will be looking for kids. Husband and I have decided we would like to take in siblings under the age of 5. We feel that keeping siblings together is more important than our own comforts over being thrown into the role of new “parents”.  With hope we’ll be prepared {as much as we can be}, so our goal is to give a safe and loving home to children that need it. If we keep siblings together, that’s one less scary part for them to deal with. They won’t be alone, or separated from everyone that they know. 

Part of the process of making home life with us easier for the children is by us not airing their dirty laundry. We will not be sharing the “stories” of the children and how they in particular came to be with us. It’s bad enough that any child needs to be in foster care, away from their families that couldn’t for whatever reasons take care of them safely, so we will be leaving it at that. It will always be up to them if, when, and with whom their story will be shared. They need to have control over something, and that is one thing we can do for them. Even though it is natural to be curious and wonder and gossip even, we will do our absolute best to give them this peace of mind. 

Another way that we will be trying to take the pressure and/or any potential  embarrassment of the situation is by how we introducing the children to other people. Instead of saying “These are our foster children”, we will take the focus onto ourselves by saying “We are their foster parents”. 

Ideally we hope to be able to adopt whatever children are placed in our care, that’s why we are going through an agency over going through the county
{because if a child has been placed into the agency’s care it’s because the children need long term care}, but that may not be the case. While we are trying to adopt the children, their parents will possibly be trying to take the steps to right their life to be suitable to take their children home. That can happen, but it doesn’t always. Either way, we will ALWAYS hope for what’s best for the children. If children can be with their families safely, then they should be without a doubt. I know I personally would have a heart breaking time with this if that does happen just because I love children with all my heart, so I would only imagine having the ones I’ve given my heart to to take care of and then to have them leave meit wouldnt kill me, but I’m sure it would feel like it. But even then, we would go to every effort so that we could still be part of the children and their families’ lives after they have left our home. We’re ready to give our hearts to them no matter what the outcome.

This is going to be a memorable experience no matter the outcome, and we hope to make it a positive one for everyone involved. We know we have wonderful families and friends that will always be supportive and loving, and for that we are grateful. We're really looking forward to this next step in our life. 


Jen, Jenny, Jennifer said...

Cassie, I am so happy for you! You and John will both make great parents and these kids will be LUCKY to have you guys be part of their lives. It seems like you have put a lot of work and research into this and you sound ready!

Tara said...

I have a friend that is a foster parent as well. Her first set of kids were a set of siblings (a brother and sister) that were toddlers. They were so cute! Their dad worked his butt off to get them back, so she only had them for a short tine, but she knew from the beginning that they were not hers to keep. I think she still keeps in touch with them. You can check out her story on her blog leahkillian.com

Sarrah said...

Cassie!!! I'm so happy for you!! you will make the best parents ever! Love is what you and John have in triplicate! who ever ends up in your home will be a blessed little child. I wish you all the best in your righteous desire to help the Children of God come to understand and know their worth! I cna't think of two better people to raise children! we love you!!

Emily@Little Forever Family said...

Even though we did not originally plan to go through foster care to adopt Collin, it was in the end one of the best steps. We had a moment where we almost said no, this is going to hurt too much, but then we looked at the picture of Collin, and decided we would trust and go that route. Our caseworker was so supportive, and most of the adoption expenses were refundable, and I came back with such a sad but awesome respect for foster parents. Collin's first foster parents are still good friends (even though we all live far apart) and they took several sibling clusters after, and although have stepped back from that journey for the moment, they are awesome examples to me of selfless love. I have another friend with Turner's syndrome, and are officially adopting their second child through adoption this month. You guys will be wonderful, and though it will be hard (as being a parent really always is) you will love it! Praying for you both (and praying you still do get some littles the "traditional" route). Sometimes Heavenly Father has a plan in place where we have to bring children into our families in other ways, but it is still an awesome and rewarding experience, and brings the same wonderful result. Plus, getting them sealed to you is such a neat experience. Love you guys!!!