Every once in a while, I decide that I need to carve some time out of my day for myself. Yesterday, I realized that I could do something while my two men entertained themselves with Chu Chu TV in that half hour before bedtime. I considered hauling some fabric out of the closet and working on my next sewing project – a quilt for my stinker – but then I did this instead. . . dishes. I’m so glad that I made time for myself. . .
I was wondering this morning, as I took out the trash can, if I’m the only person who glares at her Crepe Myrtle with pure hate as it is dripping with blooms. . . Allergy Season.
Next week, we will be heading to the TPR trial for our foster son. For those non-fostering folks out there, this is the trial to Terminate the Parental Rights for his biological family. We are literally on the verge of deciding how open his, hopefully inevitable, adoption will be. At lunch today, Alex visited me at work, and we sat in the staff lounge tossing out questions like. . .
Is one visit a year enough?
Two or three e-mails a year with pictures and updates?
When he visits his family, do we ask them to call him by his new name? Or do we let them use the name that they gave him? (We’ve had him since he was 6 weeks, and he’s still very young, so yes, we are going to give him a new name.)
We definitely want our little man to know that he’s adopted. We want him to know his biological family. . . but we want it all to happen without getting caught up in a whirlwind of drama. . . We want to know that things will go well during visits, that his family will actually show up for them if we plan them, that everyone will handle it with grace and maturity. . . That openness will be an easy thing. . . but there’s just no way of knowing, is there? You just make the plans that you can, put forth the effort, and hope that as he grows older, he understands that all we’ve ever wanted is the best for him.
I just recently came across an old packet of photos that I’d printed. . . and when I say I, I mean the toddler running around our house. . . and when I say old, I mean from about 13 months ago. . . When I opened up the packet of photos that he had grabbed off of a shelf that I THOUGHT he couldn’t reach, I realized that they were all pictures from his first Easter with us. I showed him one of himself and his foster dad, and I realized that he looks SO different than he did last year. I hardly recognized the baby version of him. I mean, I knew it was him, but he looks SO DIFFERENT. Obviously, a toddler is going to have grown and changed a lot in 13 months. . . but it’s funny to me that he can recognize Papá in the picture but not himself.
I started thinking about how easily I had forgotten what he looked like when he came to live with us, and how the little boy that I know today will be a distant memory in just a year or two. Hopefully, we’ll have newer, exciting memories together. . . but the little toddler who can’t help but crawl on me when I’m on the floor. . . who loves blocks like I love cheesecake. . . who is so desperately trying to learn how to get on and off of his tricycle . . . will fade a bit in my memory. It will be the photos that I take that help keep these times from disappearing forever. I imagine this is part of why I’ve had this irrational compulsion to take pictures from time to time of the room cluttered with his favorite toys. . . because how else will I remember which toys are his favorite and how much he loves drums?