I got the referral call for the three siblings on Friday afternoon at 1:00.
I hadn’t heard anything from the agency or county leading up to it, and was under the assumption that the children were already placed. The social worker called with the referral from the county, specifically for us.
He gave me the background on the kids, why they came into care, the situation with TPR and their parents, their current services and information on any IEPs that are ongoing. He asked if we could take the kids the same day (on Friday). Of course we did not have 3 beds set up. And my husband was two and a half hours away for business! I guess that’s how it works, the worst possible time and when you are least prepared!
We slept on it. We discussed every angle. We weren’t hung up on the kids, we were hung up on the number. Four seems like a lot of kids, especially coming from parenting only one!
We finally just decided that this was the whole reason we started applying to adopt from foster care. Because we can provide for a sibling group that might be otherwise split up. We also thought down the road six months and wondered how we would feel if we hadn’t found a match like these siblings. Would we regret not trying? The answer was yes. Yes we would be sad that we had not even attempted to make it work for them and for our family. So there you have it! We have three kids coming to live with us today that we have never met and never seen. I’m very nervous. I’m a planner and there is just no way to plan for this!
We set up the rooms as best we could with only two days notice. We bought mattresses and hauled them home on Saturday. We bought sheets and pillows. I will do a post later in the week on what I purchased and what I actually needed!
I spoke at length with Penny, who was going to adopt them, about what they had and what they needed. She said the oldest two are set on clothes but that the youngest only has one pair of summer pajamas. Penny hadn’t bought them yet (despite her living there for two weeks) because she hadn’t gotten her check from the county yet. Sigh. She also said that they have four bikes. I don’t know about any other toys but four bikes!!! So I went out and tried to find some summer 5/6 pajamas (not the easiest thing, as I like to find 100% cotton and what the heck Target with all your polyester clothes!). I am assuming that I will need to buy all of them sneakers and fall back-to-school clothes. That will come. My mother in law has offered to get them whatever they need, so that is nice to be able to send her a list of some items they need for school!
I researched upcoming day camps in our area to introduce them to some new activities if they want. I looked up places to take them and keep them busy until school starts. I searched for lessons in the fall in case they want to do sports or other activities, since sign up for most things starting in the fall was held in June.
My google search was on fire! I looked up bedtimes, how much sleep kids need by age, when kids lose their teeth, when to buy kids cell phones, school schedules and bell times, etc etc etc. Having only a three year old I don’t know about these things because I haven’t lived through it as a parent (and it’s been a while since I was 9!).
We are excited and nervous. We don’t really know what to expect today and I don’t think anyone can be totally prepared for this.