Wednesday, February 18, 2009

What A Difference Two Weeks Makes

Sometimes life doesn't work out quite like you plan.

Two Thursdays ago, Nate and I were sitting on the couch watching City Slickers. Nate wasn't feeling well, so we were planning on "vegging out" for the evening. I was clicking away on the laptop, pricing flights for our upcoming summer anniversary trip to San Francisco. We were contemplating where we wanted to get dinner from that night, because I wasn't in the mood to cook.

Then the phone rang.

To bring you up to speed, Nate and I became licensed foster parents last October and have been waiting since then for a call asking us to take a child into our home.

It was DHS on the phone. They had a six-year-old little boy that needed a place to stay. Could we take him?

I told them I'd have to call them back. We had never considered taking a child this old. We had always assumed that when a child came to live with us, it would be an infant, maybe a toddler. I had the stroller, the carseat, the baby toys. I'd scouted out all the best garage sales and put together a tub full of onesies and baby blankets. This was not what we had expected.

I hung up the phone and told Nate what they were asking. We had almost no details, just a name and an age. And they needed to know ASAP. We immediately started to pray, and five minutes later, we were both in agreement on what our answer would be.

I called them back and said yes.

Two hours later they dropped him off.

And life, as we know it, will never be the same.

Because I have no idea what the legal parameters are for talking about foster children on blogs, I'll be forced to make details scarce. I won't talk about him by name (except to call him "M") and I will likely be unable to post any pictures.

What I will be able to talk about is how much your life can change in a split second. How you can get thrown into parenting in some very unorthodox ways. How trusting God and going out on a limb can be the scariest thing you've ever done.

I can talk about how you can be forced to learn in a matter of days things that other parents have had years to understand. How your own schedules and routines don't really matter. How you've never really understood dirty until you've lived through a sloppy Iowa winter with a kid in the house.

I can talk about how kids and broccoli don't mix, and how tantrums can ensue if you try to force the two together. I can talk about having no choice but to learn on the fly that six-year-old little boys bounce off the walls and break things, how they love to make noise and think burping is funny. And how they can melt your heart with a simple word or a hug.

Right now, I'm sitting and watching M wrestle with our dog (who only weighs 15 pounds and is giving me a "please save me" look). And I'm struck by how life doesn't usually turn out the way I planned.

Sometimes it turns out even better.

What a difference two weeks can make...

1 comment:

Marti said...

Well, Lindsay I can honestly say I've been stalking your blog waiting for you to pen (or type) a few words about your experience thus far :)

Tears are welling up in my eyes because of the sheer joy I feel for you right now. I vaguely know how your heart has ached for a child to love. My heart is full knowing how you immediately obeyed when God was calling you to step (okay LEAP full force) out of your comfort zone. What an awesome witness to your trust in our trustable God.

"M" has no idea how blessed he is to have crash landed at your house.

You will be a wonderful mom and I will always be here for you if you need anything. We are praying for wisdom for you and Nate as you continue on this journey. To God be the glory!!!

Love you!

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