I know, I know, I know!
It's been forever since I updated. Please understand that my free time is now so incredibly limited that I have no time to write, no time to think, and sometimes, no time to breath!
The girls moved in Feb 7. KK had been really poking the bear. She knew she was moving and she wanted to move NOW. There is nothing like an anxious teenager to set ones nerves on end. KK tapped danced all over Prev. Foster mom's nerves until she simply couldn't take it any more.
From my point of view, PFM (previous foster mom) really needed to get a grip. She complained to me that KK was defiant! rebellious! unmanageable! When I cornered her on that statement, saying, "So she's breaking things? She's running away? She's is physically violent?" PFM replied, "No....but she won't do her homework. She won't clean her room. She won't do what she's asked to do and she's picking on her little sister!"
Seriously though, KK was acting out and yet not acting out. Considering her past, she really should be killing small animals and setting fire to things.
Which, she has never done and isn't doing now.
It is very apparent that PFM is super strict, which actually works out in our favor. Yes, we are strict, but we are also fair. The girls think they have died and gone to heaven...for the moment at least.
So, the girls were moved without notice. They got off the bus and found all their worldly goods in a heap on the living floor. They were told I would be picking them up within the hour. They were not given an opportunity to say goodbye to friends or mentally prepare for the move.
Such is life in foster care.
In the weeks since they have moved in we have had a lot of anxiety tummy. School and work have been missed and yet we've somehow survived and are learning to figure things out. Let me just say that all of this would be A LOT easier if I wasn't working for the man Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.
The four of us were required to attend the recent Permanency Hearing. We were told the girl would not need to attend and then received word the night before the hearing, that both girls were required to attend.
More anxiety tummy. More worried eyes. More drama and trauma.
KK spoke before the Judge, the lawyers, the caseworkers, and her bio-mother (who always attends court on speaker phone from another state). She sat up straight in her chair and spoke in a strong clear voice.
Lawyer - KK you know that the court needs to make a decision regarding you and your sisters future. These are the choices that the Judge will consider in your case. The first one is for you and your sister to return to your parents. The second, is for you to stay in foster care until you each turn 18. The third is for the court to appoint guardians for you both and the forth choice is for you and your sister to be adopted. What would you like to see happen?
KK - I want to be adopted.
Lawyer - With your sister or without your sister?
KK - With my sister.
Lawyer - And how much contact would you like to have in the future with your father?
KK - I do not want any contact with my father.
Lawyer - and how much contact would you like to have in the future with your mother?
KK - I do not want any contact with my mother.
The sound of Bio Mom's sobbing filled the court room. Her weeping began when KK said she wanted to be adopted, but the heartbreaking tears really began to flow when KK said she wanted no contact with her mother.
We (the lawyers, PF Mom and Dad, caseworkers, Beloved and I) were not surprised by the admission of adoption. We were equally not surprised by KK's desire to never speak to her father, but to cut off all contact with her mother was surprising. My heart caught in my throat when KK uttered those words. The searing pain and loss that Bio Mom must have felt was horrific. I felt so sad for all parties involved. Every adult in that room understands KK's motives (to a degree anyway), but a lifetime is a long time not to speak to your biological family. Fourteen is far to young to make a life altering decision such as this. Yet, she knows her mother and the rest of us only have court documents and Bio Mom's own statements to base an opinion on.
Don't get me wrong, Bio Mom has made many, many, many poor choices regarding her young daughters. She abandoned them to a monster in an attempt to save herself. She has been in and out of prison and jail. She has mental issue. She is an addict. Yet, for me all I can think of is the sorrow that a mother feels when her children reject her.
KK has a lot of anger inside her, anger that she is going to need to deal with before it engulfs her. Hay-Hay is still little and has the best chance at a normal life.
When I look at my two young daughters and see their strengths and weaknesses, I wonder how we will get them to adulthood in one piece. I wonder how I can be so calm in the midst of the all the drama. I marvel at the compassion that I feel for Bio Mom.
Could it be that I have grown as a person? It's only been a month, so I won't get too carried away here. But I see a glimmer of the person that I've always wanted to be and I think I am beginning to understand the refining of trials by fire.
Only time will tell if I can stand the heat.