Sunday, November 30, 2014

Why Would You Say That?!

Evie was talking to her grandmother on the phone last night.  I was putting Tank to bed in the next room so I could hear the whole conversation but wasn't contributing anything.  Grandmother asked if Evie was going to church the next day.  Evie said, "I don't know" but then asked her grandmother if she was going to come to the same church as her.  The grandmother said yes.  (With no intention to go).  Evie said, "Yay!  Then I get to see you!"  She proceeded to give her grandmother directions to the church (which made no sense because she's five) and then said, "And you come in and look for me and we'll wave at you and you can come sit by me and Miss Allison and then I get to see you!!!" 

At this point, Tank was still not asleep but I was itching to get back in the room to correct this whole situation. 

The conversation continued: "Are you going to come to the same church as me tomorrow?"  This time the grandmother said, "I don't know..."  Evie said, "Just say yes" so the grandmother said "yes."  Evie said, "Yay!!" 

I finally was able to get back in the room, and Evie told me, "Grandmother is going to come to the same church as me tomorrow."  I told her that they live in a different place and go to a different church... and she said without hesitation, "OK."  Easy as that.  Why the grandmother would say that she would be at the same church (and thus disappoint her when she wasn't there), I don't know!

File under I Just Don't Understand.

Twin Update

Twin was released from the hospital yesterday.  She is still trying to get 100% well, but she is doing ok. 

I also realized when I made the last post that there are now more reasons why Twin is such a great blog name for her.  She is almost the same age as Tank (a month younger), and their names rhyme! 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Prayers

The pinkeye plague was not the worst to happen today.  Please pray for TT's foster daughter, Twin (who is a month younger than Tank), who was admitted to the hospital today; and for her SWEET Mama who is taking care of her. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Germs, Germs, Go Away!

After Tank's second ear infection a couple of weeks ago, we have not gotten away from the illnesses.  Evie got a fever of 101 Sunday night so didn't go to school on Monday.  It was still 99.5 on Monday morning.  She was wheezing and had some nasty nasal congestion, too, so we went to the doctor.  Of course by the time we got there at 11, she was bouncing off the walls and had no fever at all.  They did say she was wheezing and to give the inhaler every 4-6 hours rather than as needed.  She spiked another fever of 102 after her nap, so had to stay out from school again on Tuesday. 

Tuesday morning we went back to the doctor to recheck Tank's ears from the previous ear infections; all was clear.  I had to take Evie to that appointment as well since she couldn't go to school. 

Today both kids ended up with goopy eyes, so off to the doctor again we went this afternoon... for the third time in three days!  Diagnosis: pinkeye.  I dropped off the prescriptions to the pharmacy as soon as we left and was told they were running 2 1/2 hours!!!  So I could pick it up at 5:30.  5:40 we arrive and they said the drops for Tank were ready but they were still working on Evie's and would page when it was done.  Then we got called up to the desk to be told that they don't have that in stock.  I surely did semi-flip out on them and tell them I wished I would have known that THREE hours ago, and that they better find somewhere that had it!  So we trudged to the next pharmacy, with Tank screaming his head off for about half the way until he fell asleep, because it was getting close to his bedtime by this point.  We got to the next pharmacy and they had put a rush on the medicine but we still had to wait about 15 minutes in the parking lot. 

Happy Thanksgiving to us!  I would like to NOT spend the next two days in the doctors' office!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Planning to Let Go

Tank's GAL (guardian ad litem) called last weekend to find a time to come visit him.  She said that his mom has been testing clean; and that she has been making good progress on her treatment plan, with the expectation that she will be finished with the plan in January. 

There will definitely be grieving when that baby leaves me.  Even before I knew if mom was making any progress or not, I would often tear up looking at that sweet face (especially during bedtime snuggles), thinking, "How am I ever going to let you go?" or "Ohmagosh... I am going to be sooo sad when you go!" or just completely overwhelmed at what a sweet soul I am privileged to be holding in my arms.

But now that I know that Tank will likely be going home sooner than later, I'm really trying to mentally prepare myself for what is to come.  With Evie, I have expected from Day 1 that she would go home to her mom (I actually expected it to be a long time ago, but apparently I am not a good judge of how a case will progress!) so I haven't gotten too attached. 

But Tank doesn't talk to his mom every night.
He doesn't tell me that he loves his mom more than me.
He doesn't say on an almost daily basis that he wants his mom, or that he misses her.
I am not second best to him. 
To him, I am the one he knows as mama. 

Letting go is going to be so hard.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

My Two Cute Kids

video
This was the evening that Tank got four shots.  You would never guess, would you? 


video
I took Evie to the Fresh Beat Band concert for her birthday.  She told me several times before we got there that she was going to dance and "show off her moves" at the concert, but then was a little reluctant to stand up and dance at first.  She eventually got up and couldn't stop moving!  She also said that Shout looked at her and pointed at her "because he loved my dance moves."  LOL

Monday, November 17, 2014

Photo Journal

I loved this football onesie/baby legs combo!  Of course it didn't stay cool enough to wear it the whole day.  And of course Tank's legs are too *wide* to be able to wear them again!
 
I opened the car door to this cuteness one day:

I've spent a lot of time with Tank at the doctor's office in the last week.  First for shots (we finally figured out that he had not had any since birth, even though his mom said he was "up to date").  Then this day for a fever which turned out to be an ear infection in the other ear. (Even with a fever and sleeping almost all afternoon, he was still laughing with me in the waiting room.  I can't believe what a good baby he is.)  Then back a few days later with a cough and wheezing. 

Evie turned 5, and she got birthday cake pancakes for breakfast. 
And this balloon she had been eyeing every time we went to the grocery store for weeks before-hand.
And a little birthday party at the park.

My nephew came over and we all went to the Miracle League game (a baseball league for kids with special needs, that I helped coach for years) and made monster eyeball cookies.
 





Sunday, November 16, 2014

Two Out of Three

Two out of three articles of my clothing are down for the count today.
 
One was spit up on.
 
The other was pooped on.
 
It was bound to happen sometime.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tidbits

A few bits of information I found out when I was at yesterday's Foster Care Review Board:
- The repeat home study of Tank's great grandparents was again denied.  Now there is an aunt that is interested, but the caseworker said, "I'm going to have to ask her a lot of questions before we delve into any home study process."
- Apparently when a child is placed in state custody, the state then files for child support payments from the parent(s).  That makes sense, but I had never thought about that before. 

And clarification from the last post about terminating Evie's parents' rights: The Foster Care Review Board's recommendation that the parents' rights be terminated is just that - a recommendation - and the Board has no power to actually terminate those rights.  And I'm not sure how much weight that recommendation holds to a judge who DOES actually have the power to proceed with terminating rights; or even what the process is for the Board presenting their recommendation to the court.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Foster Care Review Board

Today was Foster Care Review Board for Evie.  I'm not sure if all states have this, but in the words of the chairman, "We are not part of DSS; we are not anti-DSS.  We are here as a checks and balances system for DSS to make sure that everything is being looked at."  From my understanding they make recommendations and then present them to the court (Judicial Review for Evie and J is next month).  Evie's mom did not show up; OFM (Other Foster Mom) said that mom's lawyer told her not to go; the board did not look at that fact highly. 

I can't go into a lot of details, but here is what I can say.  There was A LOT of information revealed that I had never heard before.  About mom's past.  About the living situation when the kids were removed from the home.  About a second psychological evaluation that was done after mom's lawyer requested it due to questions about the first psychologist's credentials; an evaluation that was done after mom had read the report from the first psychologist - a report that raised A LOT of significant concerns about mom's ability to parent.  Of course the second evaluation did not have much in terms of recommendations or concerns, because mom then knew what was going to be asked and how she should answer the questions. 

The only thing left officially for mom to complete on the treatment plan is to find a safe place to live.  But the board felt like there should be a lot of other things on there.  And ultimately the board's recommendation was for termination of parental rights.  Which kind of blew me away, because at the beginning of the case, I expected Evie to be here a month or two at most (and even recently, I still felt confident she would go back with mom eventually).  But after all the new things I learned today, it didn't surprise me.  (Edited to add: This recommendation is just that - a recommendation - and the Foster Care Review Board has no power to actually terminate those rights.  And I'm not sure how much weight that recommendation holds to a judge who DOES actually have the power to proceed with terminating rights; or even what the process is for the Board presenting their recommendation to the court.)

They also put me on the spot and asked me if rights were terminated, if I would adopt Evie.  My honest answer is, "I really don't think so", but I wasn't sure what to say, so I was vague and ended up saying, "I would consider it."  I just pray those kids get some permanency soon. 

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Happy Halloween!

... from the Operation game guy, L'il Pumpkin, and the Candy Corn Princess!

Bonded

Today my friend and his mom came over while the kids were napping so I could go run an errand for about 45 minutes.  Evie was asleep when I left. Tank had fallen asleep in the car on the way home, but woke up before I put him in the bed; but he was talking to himself in his room when I left for the errand.  He ended up not going back to sleep and my friend got him up.  And then apparently he started crying.  And cried for 30 minutes.  They said they tried everything - the exersaucer, the play mat on his stomach and his back, holding him, changing his diaper.  They finally gave him a bottle, even though he had just had one two hours before.  He ate it, but that didn't calm him afterwards, either.  When I walked in the door, he was crying.  Which is so unusual because he is normally very happy, and only cries when he is hungry or tired.  So I started trying to figure out why he was crying - maybe he was teething; maybe he was tired, since he hadn't really slept other than two 15-minute naps today.  I picked him up and he was fine.  As soon as my friend left, I put Tank in the exersaucer so I could go to the bathroom.  He was fine, and remained fine in there for the next 30 minutes while I did the dishes.  Nothing was wrong with him.  He just wanted who he knows as his mommy.  Not that I had to hold him; he just wanted me in the room.  How quickly babies become bonded.  (Although I guess seven weeks seems like not that long to me, but it is actually a fourth of his whole life!)