We have thirty days (unless they get placed sooner), four weeks from tomorrow the girls get returned to a life far different from the one they have been exposed to for the last six months. Their first foster mom, let's call her Trainwreck, had a newer quite large home in nice part of our city with a pool. Our home is considerably clean, we dine out about 2 times a week, their is a level of cleanliness they have probably never experienced while being at our home. Not that I'm a neat freak, nor could you eat off of my floor - unless you want your lost bite coated in dog hair but we maintain our home in generally clean manner. Point being, they will be exposed or returned to a depressing trailer on a plot of land with no grass, located in Meth lab central, but hey - they will have their parents.....
The last week has been rough, regarding the girls. Without burying you in details I can say that it has been a struggle and a challenge because of the 4th of July and moving visits around. One thing that upsets me to no end - I was asked if we would like to move the visitation date (which I didn't think we had any say) from Sat/Sun to Fri/Sat so the parents could have them for the 4th. I said no (for several reasons). The agency called back to let me know that the Birth parents will get the kids anyway that day and they want them from 11-11. My response (in my mind)Um, not only no - but hell no? My response in real life- If that is approved someone from the agency will have to drive them to our home at 11:00 at night because I refuse to pick them up at that time. First, it is just way too late for kids to be awake in that hour. Second, it is not the safest night to be out driving around - as most people are intoxicated. I could go on. WHY DID THEY ASK ME, IF WE HAVE NO SAY IN THE MATTER?????
I've come to the realization that the agency, while I thought they were our advocate,I now feel that I was sadly misled and I do not feel like we are getting the support we need from them. A friend of mine (who used to work for DPSS, in a different section) reminded me last night that these children are files on someones desk and most foster parents are doing this for the money so the social workers have come to this conclusion that foster parents are merely providing a service and it is held as a business transaction. This whole concept is foreign to me and I cannot wrap my brain around it quite yet though it is nice to have an insight into their perspective though it may be generalized. I, personally, think the social worker hates us because we are detail oriented people and are making her job hard. Oh well.
I know I will miss the girls but there is a part of me that feels that I'm ready to move on. I was explaining to someone that I'm feeling like I need to break up with a boyfriend and I'm waiting for him to come home from a long trip. This is probably me subconsciously using my defense mechanism so I don't completely meltdown when the point comes for them to go home.
In other news - My in-laws arrive tomorrow, YAY. It will be nice to spend time and visit with them though I have more homework than I can think about and need to catch up as this week marks the half way point with classes, how did that happen- I swear I started last week?
I had an AMAZING weekend. My cousin Brenna and her Fiance Sam flew down from the Bay area and we hosted a couple's shower at my Aunts home, she lives close to the water in a small So Cal beach city. The weather was perfect, the food was great and we blew through the wine and beer like a good Irish family does (while still being responsible). We arrived at 11:00 AM, the party started at noon and we did not leave until almost 10:30 PM. One of the highlights was a trek through a canyon that starts at the end of my Aunts street and takes you right to the beach. Some parts of the trail are quite narrow and drop off about six feet to a creek that is filled by the local storm drain. Traversing over muddy, slimy and all around scary as hell water followed by steep trails after keeping a buzz for a few hours, while not highly recommended can be fun. We had some minor casualties but nothing that needed medical attention - Thankfully. Once we got to the ocean, Duane, Sam and my Uncle Joe (Sam's soon to be Father in law) all found the Pacific to be calling their names and jumped in. Speaking of Brenna's mom + dad who are the coolest Aunt and Uncle a girl could ask for, they are some of the most amazing people who have no idea how much they have impacted my life, in such positive ways. Every tearful good bye from our visits was held tightly in my memory bank, their voices ring a unique and familiar sound I have heard since birth, we joke that I was at their wedding as I was born four short days after that day. While selecting wedding bands, I knew the moment I looked at a band that was identical to my Aunt's, a simple rounded band in a different hue, that it was the ring for me. At every glance toward that band, I remember our wedding day and two important, remarkable people in my life.
Things I'm looking forward to -
Our big trip to San Francisco (Brenna + Sam's wedding) and making plans for the big "36" birthday - Shit, doesn't that sound old. I don't feel like I should be that old. I can remember thinking when I was a kid that anything past 32 sounded relatively old. What boggles my mind is that when my mom was this age - she had a daughter that was rocking out to Duran Duran, reading Vogue and Elle magazines dreaming to be a famous clothing designer and dropping hints left and right about wanting a "surprise" birthday party - Remember that Jules?
Why is youth wasted on the young?