Days like today I just lift my head up. I take a deep breathe in, letting out all that hinders me. The yesterdays are gone. Our lives feel so unsettled, the ground moving and shifting from under our feet. I’m tired and in need of rest, but there is none. In my arms I try to hold tight to the things that matter. And I am reminded of my little ones.
The lives they had, torn from, lives that they were pushed into, taken out of. Only to have such emotionless responses from people. As though it’s normal and everybody has a sob story, like it’s a competition. The thing is, this isn’t a sob story. It’s THEIR reality. There is nothing much worse than being a baby, vulnerable and needy. Being helpless. Being lonely. Abandoned. Abused. Starving. Dirty. Separated from siblings. Losing a mother and father. Losing everything.
Getting dropped off from home to home. Never feeling secure or loved the way it comes so naturally to so many. How is that anything to look at and not want to go above and beyond what we are humanly capable of to make that extra effort. Because, yes, I do think my children deserve extra love and attention. And many like them. Yes, I think we need to go out of our way to be more intentional with the way we love and adore them. Why shouldn’t they receive that from us? If we treat them differently than someone else’s biological son or daughter, it’s because they ARE different. And that’s the truth. That’s the thing we can’t change. And they are going to grow up always feeling different. Because they will be. Inevitably, they are going to feel this way. And that’s not a negative thing. That’s part of their reality. Their story. But that’s also what makes them so special and so much more unique than just any boy or girl. That’s why we keep loving more deeply and madly. They had traumatic lives. Lives that they may not remember one day, but will affect them forever. Why would we treat them just like everybody else? Because it’s easier on us? Because we can keep on living like there isn’t this pain in the world? Because we can’t be bothered by someone else’s problems?
And there’s nothing worse as a mother not knowing everything about your childrens past. Not having any baby pictures. Not knowing every bump, bruise or illness. Not knowing if they were cold at night, crying for food or reaching out for someone to hold them. Not having a mother to swoop them up and cradle them in their arms. To kiss their foreheads and whisper how much they are loved. It kills me to think that the only mother they might have known was a sibling only three years older than them. Babies raising babies. That’s the reality.
I don’t know the outcome of that pain in their hearts. I see so many signs of fear and insecurity. Still. Even after two years of being loved and cared for. Love is so basic, yet so hard to receive in some homes. And though we pour every bit of love and emotion we can to ensure they feel special, secure and stable, that might just not be enough.
I feel foster children are so misunderstood. They are punished for things they never did. They receive all the consequences of the sins of another. They are often forgotten. They are often unloved. And still neglected and mistreated. A friend shared this very powerful video with me. It’s what spurred this post today. I hope you watch it and I hope we all begin to realize the realities of these children’s lives. Us pretending they are ok, like nothing bad ever happened, is the worst thing we can do for them. Us acknowledging their reality and grief is what helps us all heal from the cruel world these kids have to face.
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