We have survived two days of summer, but I have to tell you day three has almost done me in! We have a program that allows the children to earn electronic time that we call pick four… each day the child has to read for 30 minutes, play a board game with a peer or adult for 30 minutes, physical group play for 30 minutes, and 30 minutes of imagination play which earns them 1 hour of electronic time of their choice (tablets, game system, or television).
Day one of the pick four just about pushed me off a cliff! Six children all asking for timers at six different times, each one asking me what they have next or what they have completed, and whining about having to think and use their imagination! Oh the cruelty these parents are using to torture their children!
Beyond torturing my children I have been working to learning the design software to help my parents keep their business moving forward, so now I have to get this business going not just for our family, but to keep my parents going as well. No pressure there!
So I have autistic kids that struggle to find routine instantly in the summer, but complain when it is there, pitching in to keep other foster families able to attend CFT’s by having their children over, getting our 18 year old autistic son to and from work because he just can’t get the hang of driving, and trying to get our family business back up running! It is overwhelming to say the least!
The worst thing about this whole thing is when you really get down to it …… I chose this life! I made the decision early on that I would follow God’s leading. Little did I know how uncomfortable it would be to follow his leading! I have learned from experience that the more I am going to be grown the more uncomfortable the experience is going to be, and the rewards have always been better than I could have fathomed!
Sometimes it is hard to see the rewards, especially when the most extreme autistic son continues to treat the family as though he and his siblings are more important than the other family members even when his siblings are blending in perfectly (well as perfect as a foster/adopt family can be). None the less I know that I will see the rewards one day and so I continue to stay the course.
I know that we have all made decisions that we fear and often regret before we reach our goal. However, I can promise that fostering and adopting a child comes with no regrets, not only have you made an impact on them, but they are impacting you as well. My words of wisdom are, ride out the storm. When you reach a calm point, even if it is the eye of the storm, assess how far this child has come (even if it is as simple as eating with silverware instead of their hands) and what you have learned in the process. There is always something learned by each person!