A one-year-old is capable of determining what is and is not dangerous.
A good child can understand when their parent is having a bad day and should comfort them.
So, hopefully, we passed. The woman who facilitated our orientation made sure to emphasize that the financial reimbursement for foster care is not enough to live on. She repeated this over and over. Unfortunately, I think sometimes there are people who may do foster care for this reason (although, I cannot figure out why).
The next step is filling out a even more detailed form about ourselves and about what type of children we are willing to have in our home. We have about a month before our next class to complete this form. The next class is eight hours long.
Although we were prepared for most of what was presented in the orientation, I did leave there with this thought: “Holy crap. We just signed up to be parents.” We are really excited (and appreciate everyone’s excitement for us) but there is still a lot of unknowns.
I will end with the second part of our story – how we came to have a heart for the foster care system:
I can honestly say that since we have been married, adoption is a highly discussed topic in our house. D and I would share stories with each other about other people’s adoptions that we heard about. We would run scenarios by each other (adopting first vs. biological kids first). We talk about it a lot because God has made it a passion for both of us.
Initially because of our trips to Jamaica, I had international adoption on my mind. Then, due to my work at a pregnancy resource center, I began to think more about the kids here in Michigan. As a control freak, I am constantly seeking more information on things. I always want to be fully-informed. So, one day I typed “adoption” in to iTunes and Foster Parenting Podcast came up on my screen. I downloaded every episode, fell totally in love with the hosts and repeatedly told D: “YOU MUST LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST.” Eventually, he agreed and is now just as faithful of a follower as I am.
We soaked it all in: 500,000 kids in the foster care system; 130,000 ready to be adopted. If one family from each church adopted one child from the U.S. foster care system, we would wipe out the problem. How can we not be a part of this?