The Tatertot woke up last night around midnight. This is something that rarely happens with him nowadays. He didn’t need a diaper change, and he was fine except that he just really wanted to press his heart to mine and fall back to sleep. I stood there a few minutes with him in the dark, tapped his lullaby frog that always soothes him down and I rocked him back and fourth with the biggest smile on my face. I could feel his smile too! As I laid him back in the crib I thought about the need he has, (just like the Superhero’s need), for me to have a humble heart! For when I am humble it leads me to be patient and when I am both of these things, they in turn thrive!
Humble. Patient. Two words that describe the similar ways that seem to connect being a special needs parent and that of being a foster parent! No other two words can really describe these two roles. I’ve tried to insert other ways to tell how this job title works for myself and the spouse but those words are what we always come back to on a daily basis! Humble. Patient.
Our walk with each of the children we have been allowed to love has been one that has taken everything we planned (that’s such a funny word “planned”, I kid myself into thinking I “plan!”) and thrown it out the window ~ side note: maybe, just maybe that’s because I’m not in control of my life, God IS so why do I attempt to plan and control it?! It is when one decides that they need to “live there life like they want to” that those biggest curve balls seem to come flying out of nowhere, (am I right on this or what?) Thus far, the spouse and I have learned to walk as humbled as a heartbeat and each time a little more patient!
What we’ve learned in this walk, I think, is that neither myself, nor the spouse expected for the two types of parenting to run so parallel but they do, and that’s okay! Accepting the needs of the child that holds your hand is what allows for a such a greater awareness of our human spirit and that spirit speaks across the lands, regardless of a race or a region! No, we don’t live in a fairytale….and we know exactly what our struggles are daily! However, we choose to take each one for it’s own and not overlap too much of the daily “rest of the world’s” issues that seem to never change …..for the good! Sometimes the best way to recover from anything in life is to take a step back and just reflect. That recently happened when we lost a big part of our family, our sweet labs that were the Hero’s first pets. Those two dogs were of the most kind in nature and perfect for all the children that have come into our home ~ who can resist dog kisses from not one but two big and loving labs?!! But when they were hit and didn’t survive my worry was how the Hero would handle it? He knew what had happened and at first was very angry and so was I but how do you teach your child to have a loving heart and not to always look at the bad …..if all you do is to look at the bad yourself? We had a service for our beloved pups to help the Hero to process the fact that he would not be able to see them again. It was hard, the spouse and I both wept and after we spoke, the Hero had questions….he was still angry and wanted to be mad it “the person behind the truck” and it was then that I realized that he needed to not stay angry or his heart would always just remember this hurt about his dogs and not the good times he shared with them. I told him about a fox that had been in our yard for the couple of days leading up to it and how our big dogs were probably protecting us and chasing that ol’ fox when they went into the road. Just after that the Hero seemed content and got up and gave the best, most heartfelt prayer for his dogs and he asked God to take care of them! Needless to say, the fox story which happen to be true was much better than him harboring anger for the truck driver.
Having a humble and patient walk does not mean you will not lose your cool ……I could give you countless examples of this but I’m sure you don’t have enough popcorn popped to last this read! It is just a way that always WINS!! And ….when you can remember this on your own walk, it does not matter what child or what the need ….you will do the right thing, in any setting!!!
Last, it will also teach your child (children) to walk a similar walk ….We are our children’s own best examples!
After 3 years of working on a dream that began with a request from a much younger Hero at that time to “have a brother or sister”……….
We got the news on Monday that: TATER TOT STAYS!!!! (Should be final within a few of months!)
Be humble in your walk…..