In my idealistic and glass half-full mindset, I want our fostering stories to end well with healing and with everyone happy. In my fantasy foster scenario, Frank and I take a vulnerable child into our home, love on her for said number of months until she returns home. We teach her about God and how to be a family. This then results in her healing and becoming a productive, happier person who can then confidently navigate this crazy world.
But this has not been our story…
There is no surprise more magical than the surprise of being loved: It is God’s finger on man’s shoulder. Charles Morgan
Our first foster placement call came around five o’clock, just as I’d gotten home from work. It was for a twelve-year-old girl. Our consultant said, “Try to pick up some soap, shampoo, deodorant and pajamas before we get there. Don’t forget the deodorant.” Ugh! With my sense of smell keener than our faithful Boxer’s, my greatest fear was a foster child with poor hygiene. And now here we were! I headed to Target through rush hour traffic and hurried back home.
The doorbell rang, and there stood Tanner. Her bright smile and chattiness were a welcome distraction from her filthy clothes and straggly appearance. She was so chatty. Did I mention she was chatty? I figured it must be her nerves. Within two minutes, I understood the request for hygiene items. In addition to her tattered clothes, Tanner reeked like a homeless person. Continue reading