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Dear Sheila

Dear Sheila,

I'm writing this post because my heart is full and I need a place to put it. I can never tell you any of the things I am about to write because they wouldn't be appropriate. That's how this whole foster mom thing works. Everyone else gets to do whatever they feel or want and I have to sit by and watch with my mouth shut only opening it occasionally to express carefully phrased statements mean not to  rock the proverbial and precarious boat.

As I sit tonight helping our son with his report on monkeys I was sad. Sad that you missed out on such a special moment. You wouldn't have known that his handwriting has improved a ton. Or watched his toothless grin creep up as he decided that monkeys eating bugs is funny. You also would have missed the meltdown when I discovered that he hid the assignment from me. So afraid to disappoint it's easier to disappear. So worried I will not have time that he just assumes he has to do this 1st grade project on his own. That's on you and your choices. 

I sat at the table at 9pm exhausted. Both physically and emotionally. I spent the entire evening at therapy helping our kids navigate the life skills they will need to handle and hopefully overcome their trauma. While Hubby read and played games with the kids in the waiting room I was invited into session to play a game with Stella. A game designed to help her learn how to handle stress and disappointment. She's 10. Her biggest disappointment should be not getting to watch tv, not trying so hard to be perfect because if she makes a mistake no one will love her and ask her to leave her home.

I spent last night meeting with the same therapists until nearly midnight discussing the kids' progress and trying to explore the feelings I have about being asked to take your next baby if the state decides you will not parent the baby.   

You know how I'm feeling? Pretty flipping mad at you. How could you put us in this situation? How could you do this to our kids? They will be crushed if you keep the baby. They will be crushed if we don't take the baby. And in the third scenario I might be crushed by taking the baby. I can't win here. And neither can you. 

And you know what? My full time work, grad school attending, 1/2 marathon training, mother of four ass is too gosh darn tired from moving to deal with this right now. I hope the sex was worth it. I see you re-friended him on Facebook now that the restraining order expired. I really want to shake you until you realize that you are doing the exact.same.thing that caused my four to be taken from your custody. Maybe then I won't have to be the one to fix it. Or feel like a hypocrit and failure because I decide I can't handle fixing it. I know that should be perfectly ok to set a clear boundary and limit. I know that it's healthy but it all feels wrong. 

Sadly, you likely don't understand any of what is about to happen. You think your rights will remain intact. You have no idea how much grieving our kids are doing and will do. You have no idea how much I resent that we have another permanency hearing next week and the goal will not be changed to adoption. They have not lived with you for more than 760 days. And of this anger further hurts my heart because I don't want to feel this way.

I want a positive relationship. I envision a bigger family that includes yours. Wonderful cultural traditions and birth stories and "when you were little" stories.  I want to share our children's hearts and in order to do that, I have to lighten mine about all this.

I hope you understand,

Foster Mom R

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