When my husband and I decided to become foster parents, we pictured a much different journey for ourselves. Children would arrive at our doorstep, in need of love, and we’d nurture them back to life. We’d save their broken souls with a combination of teddy bears, warm baths, and new toothbrushes. We read the books, we took the classes, we answered the hundreds of questions asked to us by our agency…surely, we were ready. …..Right?
The answer to that question would be a very hard, very solid “no.” No, there was no way we could have ever been ready for the journey that we were about to go on. We had to learn for ourselves that most of foster parenting isn’t what is taught to you in your licensing classes. It’s about 75% intuition and 25% chance, and you’re going to make mistakes along the way. Following foster care motivation groups on Facebook and looking at fostering photos on Instagram pages made it look easy. It made it look fun and filled with hugs and unconditional, double-sided love. As we maneuvered our way through our journey, I started noting the comparisons through these filtered highlight reels of foster care experiences online and the real-life, nitty gritty experiences we were finding ourselves in. I craved for a place to share the real life stories. The heartache stories AND the stories of full hearts and minds. I see no reason to sugar coat the experiences my family has gone through, and see no need to stick a filter onto the lens looking into our intertwined lives. Hopefully, this blog will provide some insight and reflection, some funny moments and some tough times, that others also walking this journey can relate to. This is foster life: unfiltered.