Our little cutie was supposed to go home on Monday. Mom was not quite ready and instead of going home, we gained her big brother. He had been with another safe family who could not keep him any longer. When they (Bethany Christian Services) asked us if we would be able to take on big brother, who is 3, we said sure. I mean really, WHAT IS ONE MORE? I figured if I survived a week of Mark out of town and stomach flu, then another child with him home would be no big deal.
And it was not so bad. I mean besides it was SEVEN kids. A 2 year old not that excited to have her 3 year old brother coming in stealing her thunder. A 3 year old who is a bit more clingy than I am used too. A Safe Families informational meeting to set up for. You know, just the usual craziness we live anyways, so one more, bring him on.
He came with a bit of wariness of us but warmed up quickly and decided I was it for him. He really REALLY attached to me. And yes, he also called me mama.
Today, though, we had to be done. We had reservations to get out of town, just Mark and I, ALONE. Hotel booked for months, and so we had made plans to get the kids back to mom on our way out of town.
The kids could sense something was going on with the packing and little man was not excited.
I told him he was going to get to see his mommy. He pointed at me. I said no, mommy A, and he cried. Now I am certain at 3 he had no idea what I meant. In his little mind I think he just figured he was being passed on again.
We drove to the office and as soon as I opened the door he started crying, big ole tears. Unfortunately mommy was not able to meet at the office so he was just switching cars to go and meet her. But he did not get that. He screamed and locked his little arms around me. And so of course I lost it. As they peeled him off of me I am not sure who was crying harder.
His screams will haunt me for a very long time.
I had to go back and re read my post that I wrote just a week ago.
Because my heart ached and I was not sure that I had done the right thing.
I don't like to hurt. I don't like crying. I don't want to have this spot in my heart that will always hear those screams or feel them prying him off of me.
Just because I KNOW that it is the right thing to do, that I CAN do it maybe quicker or easier than some, does not mean I hurt less. In fact if we had to base it on feelings I am probably the WORST person to do this ministry. When I feel, I feel it with a passion. I can't just let go of things quickly or easily, and so even 10 hours later, I am still teary over that goodbye. And I probably will be for a very long time.
And really, isn't that how it SHOULD be?
I brought those kids in and loved them like a mommy would. I gave everything I could to them.
I would not change a thing.
And we will do it again, and again.
Though I did tell Bethany to send me a newborn that won't scream when they take him.
But reality is, God calls us to DO HARD THINGS.
And I am thinking, if it does not hurt, I probably need to work harder. Because the times when my heart has hurt the most, are the times when I KNOW that I am in HIS will.
Little Ms Cutie? She just goes with the flow and looked at big brother like he was crazy. She gave me her big ole grin as I covered her in goodbye kisses & tears.
Word on the street is he calmed down and fell asleep as they drove and I had a text from their mommy that things were good, they had just gone for ice cream.
And our kids? They were very excited about signing their names in the bible we sent home with them. They did not go to the drop off, and I am glad. They were eager to send us on our way with visions of Grandparents to make their day! Did I mention that Mark and I have a weekend ALONE? So thankful for amazing grandparents & good groupon deals. If we EVER needed a weekend away it is NOW! Some might find it amusing that he happened to pick this weekend, a weekend full of non stop basketball on TV. A TV with no kids around screaming while he watches. Fine with me, he suggested I go next door and get a pedicure tomorrow at exactly 3:30. Who am I to argue when he suggests a pedicure, which has happened, NEVER?
Will keep you posted on our next placement, we know there will be more.
And we will be ready!