There's a 12-foot, unlit Christmas tree in my living room, place settings for 28 people to eat dinner tomorrow night in my dining room, and more words in my soul than I can even begin to count.
Sometimes I write because I want to, and sometimes I write because I have to. My mind stops working properly and all I can think about are words that I want to put on a page....words that I need to speak.
It's been a long time since I've let words come out. A really long time.
It's mostly because I haven't been me. I haven't felt like myself. I've been sad and overwhelmed and consumed.
We have this baby living with us. You may know him as Baby A.
As expected, he's rocked my world. He's changed me. And I like him. A lot.
And when I let myself think about it too much, foster care is hard.
But when I don't think about it, and I just do it, foster care isn't hard at all.
Foster care is a constant reminder that this world is not where we belong. It's a reminder that we all come from brokenness and we are all broken. We're imperfect people living in a world full of sin.
Foster care is a reminder that this world is uncomfortable and messy, and at the end of the day, none of us measure up. We can't do it on our own. And that's okay.
I'll be honest, there are days I wish we weren't doing this....life would be so much easier right now if we weren't in this mess. But if we weren't in this mess, we wouldn't have him.
I know, I know.....so many of you look on and wonder how we can bring ourselves to do it. How do you love a baby and give him back?
I don't know. I really don't. That's the hard and messy part of all of this.
I didn't know I could love a baby that wasn't mine like this. I didn't know I could ever picture myself as his momma. But I do sometimes.
And then there's his momma, who will sit with our family tomorrow night for Thanksgiving dinner. She's just a babe herself. And there are days like today when I see her and talk to her and think about the reality of her life and I can't help but think of how different we are while in the same breath think about how very much the same we are.
Her life looks nothing like mine. Never has. Maybe never will. And I'm not for a second saying that we have it figured out. Read 2 posts on this blog and you'll quickly see that I have no clue what the heck I'm talking about, ever.
But I am saying that it's possible to be very much the same and very much different at the same time.
I wonder why she ended up where she is and why I ended up where I am. Education, resources, support....all those things matter so very much. I had them. She didn't.
And now here we are.
Somehow divinely intertwined. She being part of my story. Me being part of hers.
Both of us in love with the same boy.
Isn't it always the boys that catch us ladies up?
She having every right to love him. I have just as much right to love him too.
And tonight, this is where we are. In this messy place called life. Praying daily that Christ takes center stage in however this story plays out....that He'll show up and show off in some miraculous way that only He can.
All the while, everything in me wants to write the end of this story. I can see a happy ending. I can write it now and be done with it all.
I'm not the author, and I don't know what's best. I can believe all day long that I know what's best for this baby, but I don't. I can't see the future. I don't know how it plays out, and no matter how much I want to write the ending, I won't try. I won't do it.
What I will do is love him like he's mine. Not because I want him forever, but because that's what he deserves. Right now, he's part of our family. Will he always be? Yes. Whether he is physically here or not. Just like Shade and Ryleigh are a part of our family, Baby A will forever be Baby A in our lives. You can't forget him. You can't unlove him. He's here. He's part of us.
That's what foster care is. It's love. Simply and truly....love.