Monday, June 27, 2011

Foster Care: Respite Recap

In addition to surviving the 2.5 week stay of the puppy, less than 2 days later, I had my first respite overnight foster care placement.  I had been asked several times to have the younger brother stay of the brothers that I had provided the day respite for as the foster parents were going on vacation.  Due to my work schedule and T being with his dad for the week, I had said no, but I could provide for some of the time if necessary.  The foster mother found another respite provider, but days before and after a few hours with the family, W was not comfortable and asked the foster mother if he could stay with me. 

I felt flattered that W felt comfortable enough to request that he stay with us.  The foster parents altered their vacation to include W in some of it and we provided respite from Saturday - Monday and a friend provided respite for a few more days. 

W was a joy to have around and I found his communication much more welcoming than Bubba's whining!  We did some arts and crafts, baking, errands, tennis, beach, movies and eating out.  His comments were laughable - with his fears of sharks in Lake Michigan and the waitress tainting his fruit punch.  He was very inquisitive asking about my desire to foster and why I haven't fostered more.  Inquiring if I thought it was OK to have a bunkbed for foster kids and if I feared they would fall.  Questioning my ring and if it was my wedding ring and why I wore it.  I love the brutal honesty and inquiry of kids.  I had prepared by purchasing a waterproof mattress pad which worked well as the bed stayed dry when he didn't either night. 

Definitely a good experience and one that we would do again!  We saw his siblings on Monday after a parental visit and his older brother was disappointed he didn't get to visit too (he is in a different foster home). 

Last week I received a call to provide respite for a weekend for two children, female 7 and male 4.  I agreed and we scheduled the weekend in August when T is done with baseball.  I hadn't talked to T first and then I thought maybe I should do respite when T was with his dad so he didn't have to share his room with a 4 year old.  I called T and his attitude was amazing.  He told me that he didn't care either way and since I already scheduled it, to keep it!  T ROCKS!  I am so blessed.  Looking forward to experience #2 (assuming nothing comes up between now and then) to go as smoothly as the first!

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