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  • Writer's pictureChelsi Myer

And. Just. Like. That. We're Real.

The journey from foster care to adoption sounded simple under a pile of paperwork. Here is a not so simple short story that has brought us to this place of adopting our daughters.

He said, "You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real, you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand." -The Velveteen Rabbit

In August of 2016, Mitch and I were at our annual foster care training to obtain 16 hours to renew our license as first year foster parents. We sat, sipping coffee, munching on low quality breakfast as we listened to an experienced, highly educated woman speak on parenting children from trauma.


I felt so frustrated with our season of life. I was exhausted. I felt defeated. I struggled at parenting- I mean, I was a "new" parent, but these children were grown (7 & 4). At that point, we'd had the girls in our home for 9 months. We were in a groove. We expected reunification to occur at any moment and I was okay (or I tried to believe so) because I just didn't think I was "cut-out" for motherhood. I was heart broken at the uncertainty, but figured my attempt to raise two beautiful girls was a pipe dream. God surely wouldn't entrust me to be their mom forever. I was merely a foster mother, and not a very good one. I was impatient, ungracious, and raised my voice to a decibel I pray my neighbors never heard.


This quote popped up in the power point; I was distracted at my seat, but gazed up at the screen change. I read the words in silence as she sing-song spoke them in a sort of lullaby that brought me to tears. I nearly had to leave the room because this cute children's book quote spoke to my very soul and all the insecurities lurking in the dark room of my sinful style of motherhood.


The iPhone pic I snapped all those memories ago in August of 2016

Lord, would I ever be Real? I snapped a picture on my phone and hoped to pour over these words one by one again later. Quietly, I bowed my head to dab tears away discreetly. Little did I know, these incredible, gorgeous souls I had tucked into bed since November of 2015 would be available for my claim. I hate to state it in such a harsh, insensitive way, but foster care is far from sensitive and light years away from ideal.


My daughters are THE MOST resilient women I have ever met. I hope to one day inhabit the same kind of courage, bravery, and aptitude for life. Can we all get an "Amen" that life is hard sometimes? Yet, their story makes me raise my hands to Heaven, praising God for His unbelievable faithfulness, and overflowing goodness. Serenity has taught me more about courage and strength than anyone else. She has a somber spirit that speaks to her experiences. She is also goofy and I'm especially enjoying her spicy attitude in her pre-teen years. Her heart is literally designed to help. She is the most helpful member of our family- by far. She often is told "What is yours to do, Sis?", meaning, "You do not need to help in this situation", yet it's so innate for her. I want to look at the world with the eyes of Serenity. I think we'd all be more like Jesus if so. And then there's our sweet Melody. We joke about her being "sweet" because she's nearly as sour and saucy as she is kind. Our little fireball, Mellie, keeps things light. She loves joy and yet, she embraces sorrow better than anyone I've ever met. There is a true talent in this balance because isn't that what life is made up of? It is ALL JOY AND SORROW. One or the other and the in between seems to fade away like a fog as the years pass by. Melody will be the person that shows me the balance of the highest highs and the deepest lows. She is our Light when clouds dim the joy in us all. She is always eager for the next big adventure and I look forward to each new venture as a family of 4.

 

Goodbye, Foster Care. Until Next Time.


We've asked the girls if they'd like us to continue fostering other children. They emphatically say, "Yes!" Their hearts are able to love on other children well. Watching them claim other foster children as their own sibling has been more of a blessing than I expected. They understand any child that comes into our home better than us because they have walked a similar road. They have worn the title of "foster kid", walking into home after home and expected to call it such. Yes, it's hard when they leave, but we love them all the more. Yesterday, January 14, 2019, our daughters officially left foster care. After 1776 days of their life, they are out. Their current state is not "officially adopted", but our finalization hearing is set to be in the next 30-40 days. We anxiously await that joyous occasion.


My daughters are the reason I blog about emotional health and spiritual growth because being their mother has grown me immensely. They are why I fall to the foot of the cross over and over; they will do as they see, so I apologize, I praise, I forgive, and I keep pointing to Jesus because His love and grace are what made me Real.


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2 Comments


danapeters4ku
Jan 17, 2019

This is wonderful news, Chelsi! I am so excited for the four of you!!

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lorastamps
Jan 17, 2019

So very happy for your family!

You guys have always been a real to me 💕💕💕

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