Posts Tagged ‘Goodbye’

Sometimes I forget I’m fostering.  I get so in the mode of mommy that I forget Half Pint wasn’t born into my family.  I’m used to the ebb and flow of our life together.  And then I get an email like the one I just read that reminds me that this life the two of us live is not normal.  Two weeks ago Lydia’s mom terminated her parental rights.  I was so worried about the moment I would have to say goodbye that I haven’t spent much time thinking about when she would have to say those words.  It would’ve ended that way anyway; she just made the choice to cooperate instead of dragging it out through the courts.  This is what we were hoping for and waiting for and praying toward.  But today I got an email saying the mom would like a goodbye visit with her kids one last time, and my heart just sank.  For the first time my heart aches for this mother.  In a couple of weeks she has to sit down with her kids and tell them she has given them up…permanently.  They can never come back home with her.  She has to tell her kids that she is no longer their mom.  Oh how my heart breaks for her!  How can you look at the faces of these beautiful children and tell them goodbye forever?  She’s saying goodbye to their childhoods.  Goodbye to hugs and kisses and laughter.  She is saying goodbye to grocery store runs and nights of homework and folding tiny little clothes.  This mother is going to have to hug her babies goodbye and then watch them climb into the backseat of a car and never see them again.  This is going to be a very difficult day for her.

It’s also going to be a difficult day for Lydia.  Even though today she asked me again if she could start calling me Mama, I know in her heart she still hopes for reunification with her family.  She told me the other day that her mom is the person she looks up to most in the world.  No matter how illogical, her mama is still her mama.  She talks about how her mama puts fries on her hamburgers and the way she sings around the house.  She still talks occasionally about going home.  When her mama looks into her tender blue eyes and says “I can’t take you home”, it is going to crush that child.  For a child who asks “why” about everything inconsequential, she’ll want to understand.  She’ll need to know why her mom can’t take care of her, why she can’t go home, and why her mom just won’t make the effort to get better so they can be a family again.  She won’t understand, and perhaps that will be the most crushing thing of all.  She will think she’s not good enough, not beautiful enough, too much trouble.  She’ll blame herself.

We knew this day was coming.  It was unavoidable.  But it’s going to be one of those days that will be lined with more sorrow than joy.  Goodbyes are never easy, but when they are forever, they have the potential to hurt so deeply the pain may never fully heal.  I’m praying that after the blow, Lydia lands in a soft place.  I’m praying God’s grace will overshadow their last moments together.  I’m praying that this final goodbye will allow Lydia to embrace her new life and finally start living again.


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