Monday, March 19, 2007

Contented and Conflicted

I say this, because I am (once again) NOT pregnant. I thought (as I often do) I might have been, but no. And this time, I barely felt the sting. I sincerely believe God is bringing a gentle peace and the very real acceptance of a possible childless existence.

Some people at our church have started the adoption process for a Chinese baby. They are looking at actually having the child in hand in 2010. Brett and I asked them about it, and our suspicions were confirmed. It’s long process with a price tag in the neighborhood of $12,000, with the inflation possibility of $20,000.

Or, from our human standpoint, absolutely unthinkable.

So, no babies. It’s okay. Usually, I don’t think they are all that cute, anyway. And all that pooping.

There is something I have been thinking about.

Foster care.

There are new billboards all over Rockford advertising for new foster parents. Apparently, they are in short supply.

My aunt and uncle were foster parents for a number of years. My cousin Steve was a sweetheart of a teenager with a very sad “real” home life. My aunt and uncle saved him in a very real sense. My other cousin, Anthony, was a foster child that my aunt and uncle adopted. He is a real part of our family now.

Several of my “real” cousins SHOULD have been in foster care, since their father beat them mercilessly. Hindsight is 20/20, though. I was only eight when my cousin revealed his bruises. If only I’d known what to do. I will always feel like I failed him.

Back to the foster kids, I know what you’re thinking. Because I’m thinking it, too. What do I know about raising children? And you’re right. I don’t know anything. Would I screw up a kid even worse than they already were? Or could Brett and I really make a difference?

We haven’t really talked about it. I think we are both scared to talk about it. The truth is that I want the experience. And I don’t mean changing diapers. I mean, being a parent. Or maybe just being someone who can help a child.

We have a house. We have extra rooms. But, we don’t know. Like I said, it’s a scary topic. Part of me thinks I’m ready, and part of me is screaming that it’s the craziest thing I have ever considered. What if we get some psycho kid who burns down our house and tortures our rabbits? What if we get a sweet little girl who just needs a safe place to sleep? All the questions.

I’m seriously thinking about calling my aunt and uncle and asking them about it. Maybe seeing if Brett and I should go to an informational meeting.

It’s strange. I’m content, but I’m also conflicted. Prayer will help, I know, but sometimes I’d just like a glowing neon sign.

Or maybe those billboards are God’s way of getting my attention.


Jennittia said...

What a huge blessing you could be to some very needy kids! There were two families in my growing up church that had foster kids. Both families eventually ended up adopting kids that stayed with them. When you think of what their life could have been and how they get a chance to be a part of a loving, Christian family... goose bumps! Will pray for this, as I know it is a huge choice.

Heidi said...

Good for you to even think about it. I personally would go the baby adoption route before I would take in foster care. I do know someone who just started and she takes in really young kids.