When I say we've had a lot going on lately, I mean it. I don't mean "boy today was busy. I had to do laundry AND dishes today". Our lives have been crazy busy with a LOT of major life events....and they're all happening at once.
Let's see...since my last writing we had a mini family reunion with my cousins from Alaska. It was a lot of fun to hang out and visit. I was sad to see them go. There's been talk of making it an annual thing so I look forward to seeing them next summer too!
We finally found a house!! My mind has been swirling with organizing things financially so we can afford to move and I've also been mentally organizing things as I pack and unpack (mentally) and decide what to take and where to put stuff in the new house. This has literally kept me awake at night. We've decided to rent out our current home so our mind set has changed from selling the house "AS IS" to doing minor repairs needed in order to rent it out.
In addition to buying a new house and moving, another major life event has occurred and my mother in law has been diagnosed with multiple myeloma, cancer of the blood cells. It was likely brought on by all the chemo and radiation she had the last time she had cancer about 10 years ago. The initial diagnosis was very difficult for all of us as we were not sure of the prognosis. However, we are more hopeful now as she is doing chemo to help treat it. All of the kids have split the chores (housecleaning, yard work, etc) and take turns taking her to doctor appointments, trying to help her out. Please keep her (and us!) in your prayers.
Next...Sweet Pea.... Her transition home is going smoothly (so far). She has 2 overnight visits a week with her family and it seems to be going well. It won't be long before she is home with her family permanently. Although this is what being a foster parent is and this is what we strive for, our hearts are broken that we are "losing" our little girl. Every time I drop her off for her visit, it is all I can do to make it to the car before I start bawling. This week, as I dropped her off for her 2 night visit, I started bawling before her mother had even made it to the front door. Then I cried the whole time I did dishes once I got home, and if I took too long of a break from packing. The house is so quiet when she's not here. I've known the quiet of a childless home for too long and do not look forward to that again. When she is here, there is literally the pitter patter of little feet as she's discovered the awesome sound her feet make as she stomps them on the hardwoods. She's filled our lives with so much laughter and joy. She is truly a "Daddy's girl". She knows Cliff would move heaven and earth for her. I think she loves having him wrapped around her little finger.
In addition to losing our Sweet Pea, I cry for another little girl. A couple of weeks ago we received a call from our agency about a baby who had been born prematurely whose mother wanted to relinquish her rights. At the time of the call, the baby was 3 days old, 3.2lbs and in the NICU at the hospital. Since we had told our agency that we wanted the next child we take to be one that we can adopt, and since Sweet Pea will be transitioning home soon, they called us. With heavy hearts, we felt we had to say no. Our reasons sound so lame as I type them out (buying the house, moving, mom's diagnosis and doctor's appointments, Sweet Pea transitioning home), but these are all major things going on in our lives. I don't know where I would've been able to fit in trips to the NICU to visit this baby. If you know me, you KNOW how hard it was for me to say no to a baby who is having such a rough start to life. I just know I could love her to health. It kills me to think of this baby "unwanted" in an incubator somewhere. I have to trust that there was another family meant to have her and can devote the time and attention she needs right now and not in a month when I would have a little less going on. I think about her every day and wonder how she is doing.
It has been a really rough couple of weeks for me. I'm either on the verge of tears or crying all the time lately. I struggle to remember that I don't have to do it all, I don't have to do it alone and I don't have to save the world. It breaks my heart but it's ok that we said no. I know God has a plan for us. He has plan for Sweet Pea and for that little baby in the NICU. My God is greater than my pain and heartache.
Some days I feel like I'm barely holding it together and some (most) days I just can't and I cry....and that's ok too.