Well, it is official: we are licensed professional parents! After several grueling months of paperwork, home studies, inspections, writing ten page autobiographies, trainings, and a water test (yes, really!), we received our license in the mail that we are approved Foster/Resource parents and are on the list to receive our first placement child.
For some reason, in spite of the many hours and trainings invested, it feels as if we are not one bit qualified to handle the life of a miniature human being. While we are probably more prepared than most moms have been during nine months of pregnancy, the reality of what we are about to face truly shines light on our inadequacies.
I am sharing all of this with you because I realize this next part of my journey may change the shift of my blog a little bit. Of course my journey with God will not change and my revelations and articles sharing those treasures will be here as well, but there may be a bit of a newer element. There is not a single child in the foster care system that has not undergone trauma (whether in the womb or outside of the womb) and this journey will likely include skills and tactics towards healing that I stumble upon and want to share with others. Throughout the history of my blog I have shared a lot about trauma because I am a trauma survivor, and I expect that those life experiences will be ashes turned to beauty as they help a child conquer the same things. I also expect to find a new and fresh take on amputee humor as I “mother” these children, and tap into unexplored resources and innovations to “git-r-done” with one leg around the house! It will be a fun journey and I am excited to be able to share this with each of you as well! (Remind me to refrain from any whining and vague poetry during those sleep-deprived hallucinatory nights!)
Our ultimate goal is to be able to give a child a forever home here with us. Through fostering we cannot be sure if that will be the first, tenth, or twelfth child that is placed with us. Whichever child does not end up with the luxury of returning home to their family, we do hope to adopt. A lot of people ask me how I will deal with the grief of losing these children when they do return home and I cannot honestly say that I know how I will handle it. It will be hard, I will cry, I will likely grieve the loss even, but I trust God. I trust that God is bigger than my pain, and any holes that enter my heart I trust that he will heal. I believe with all of my heart that each child that comes to this place will be a life impacted with the love and care that Christ has demonstrated to me, and will be forever touched. Hopefully, even their first moms and dads will be too.
For many years I have had the dream of having one child of my own and fostering/adopting a second child. After 6 years of infertility struggles and treatments we decided to move forward and meet God right where he has placed us. This may mean we never have our own children, and while that hurts, I accept that. Many things in my life have been turned to ashes over the years by my own choices and things that have happened to me, but I know the word of God is true, and he promises to make beauty from ashes. I’m turning my ashes over during this time and allowing the God of our universe to use my burning rubble and pain to bring hope and a future to the children he brings.
What a welcome start for a new year in the Ash Household!