Once upon a time, in the little green house on the corner, two girls came to live with new parents. They brought their clothes. They brought their toys. They brought books and shoes and HUGE stuffed animals. The two little girls brought their sniffles. They brought their tears. They brought their bad attitudes.
The family who lived in the little green house were prepared for sniffles and tummy aches. They knew all about clothes and toys and books. Mom and Dad were certain of good days and bad. They smiled knowingly at each other as incidents of lying and crying and squabbles presented themselves.
And as the days rolled along, each member of this new family learned to adjust and stretch and accept. Even when littlest daughter said mean, horrible, despicable things. Mom and Dad took it in stride when middle daughter was caught in a lie. No one was surprised. Annoyed, but not surprised.
Each day, everyone did their job. The children went to school. The parents went to work. They gathered round the dinner table each night and shared the news of their day. For littlest daughter, Mom became Mommy and Dad was occasionally ignored or rebuffed and every now and again he was called Daddy.
The days grew into weeks and weeks into months and while life had a certain flow to it, middle daughter was cautious. She was careful. She worked hard at being perfect...so that her dream of adoption might come true.
For you see, the evil in her life and the life of her sister, kept its bony hand firmly upon their backs - lest they become settled and happy.
One day, Mom and Dad traveled many miles to court. They sat in the back row with former Foster mom and dad. They listened to the valiant DA, the comedic caseworker, the bull dog attorney. In the back ground, biological mom attempted to cast her spell of lies. She spun a web of deceit, hoping to spread her poison and ensure that her daughters never find peace.
But the Bull Dog had quick, sharp teeth and produced evidence proving how many times attempts had been made by the State to work with, help, or simply contact Bio-Mom. The comedic caseworker came prepared with her own reports, and the DA simply laughed and shook her head.
The Most Honorable Judge listened in stern silence as point after point showed the failings of Bio-Mom, who is truly trapped in the prison of her addiction and mental illness. The Most Honorable Judge asked pointed questions and then handed down her decision.
The state plan would be changed from return to parent to adoption.
This time there were no tears from the phone's speaker as Bio-Mom accepted her fate.
DA asked the court that this matter be settled before the beginning of the school year and all parties agreed.
As the brilliant, bright flowers begin to bloom in the garden of the little green house on the corner, two girls ride their bikes up and down the street. In many ways, they seem untouched by the stress and drama of the foster care system. They seem so normal.
Hidden beneath the surface of two smiling faces, worries and cares lurk. Sometimes sharp words fly. Sometimes angry attitudes burst forth like ugly, green slime, engulfing all who stand in its path. Many times Mom and Dad whisper and wonder to each other, but then they remember:
Once upon a time ends with ... and they lived happily, ever after.