Yesterday I wanted to give up at least a dozen times, maybe more. It’s funny how the things we worry about and pray about can sometimes go swimmingly, while the normal day-to-day things that we wouldn’t normally worry about go totally awry.
I was so worried about the long times in the car that we would have on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, going to and from different festivities, because Baby Incredible doesn’t do well in the car most of the time. He pretty much detests the car seat, and if he doesn’t fall asleep, he often cries to the point of not being able to be comforted.
Well, he did absolutely wonderfully in the car. He was an angel on all four of our one-hour car trips. The unexpected problem started on Christmas Eve when we reached our first destination. We got to my boyfriend’s family’s house, my amazing boyfriend who has been 100% supportive of my foster mama responsibilities since I began the classes and trainings, before we were dating, while we were just friends…and Baby Incredible screamed his head off for an hour or more. He wouldn’t eat, he had a clean diaper, and he wasn’t responding to any of the ways I normally comfort and soothe him. This was not the way I had pictured Christmas Eve going. Eventually, he calmed down and fell asleep for the remainder of our evening and even slept through our car trip home. I was a little worse for the wear, but nothing that couldn’t be fixed with some deep breaths, some prayer, and some kind words from my boyfriend.
Baby Incredible slept through the night on Christmas Eve and woke up at around 7am Christmas day, at which point he, again, screamed his head off for the majority of the next five hours. He would not be comforted by much of anything for much longer than five or ten minutes at a time. I wanted to have a peaceful morning at home before my boyfriend picked me up to go out to my family’s house for Christmas, but instead, I got a stressful morning of lots of screaming.
While the crying was stressful, what was more difficult was not knowing what to do to comfort Baby Incredible. Normally, I am great with babies. At least one of the myriad of things I try can comfort or calm a crying baby, but yesterday, no. For whatever reason, he was a mess. I had so many moments of feeling like I knew nothing about what I was doing, when normally I feel like I know my way around babies.
During those five hours, I cried with him at some points, and at many points, I felt like I had made a mistake taking on the responsibility of a foster baby, as a single woman who has a full time job, a boyfriend, friends, a family I’d like to spend time with, etc.
The truth? Being a foster mom is a sacrifice. Actually, it’s a lot of little sacrifices that happen every day. The truth? There are good, even great moments of having the privilege of being in the care of a precious infant, of knowing I am saving him, giving him a chance of a bright future as I nurture him through part of some of the formative years of his life. The truth? I’m learning a lot from being a foster mama, and God is growing my character through it. He is also growing my relationship with my boyfriend through it.
Although I would be sad, I would be ready if the agency called me tomorrow and told me that they had a new place for Baby Incredible. I do feel ready for him to move on. I have been praying that God would move Baby Incredible when he sees fit. Sometimes I do feel like I have more than I can handle, but when I feel that way, I know that I need to lean on God more and ask for help from my friends and family. I know that God will move Baby Incredible when he knows it’s too much for me. Until then, I will continue to be grateful for God, my friends, and my family, and especially my boyfriend, as I continue on this challenging yet rewarding road.
Today has been much better. Baby Incredible seems to be back to his old self, I got babysitting for the New Year’s Eve dance (huge sigh of relief), I went for a short walk with Baby Incredible, and I haven’t had to go anywhere or do anything pressing other than taking care of him and doing some things around the house. I’m grateful.