Foster care is the Both/And. Always.
In a world where we often look for clear-cut answers and tidy solutions, foster care stands as a testament to the messy, complex, and profoundly human nature of our lives. It’s a journey that defies easy categorization, and it demands that we hold contradictory truths in our hearts.
We can love and pray for and root for and encourage bio family AND sometimes simultaneously hold the understanding that it is not safe or wise or possible for the kids to return home.
This is the paradox that foster care presents to us. It challenges our capacity to embrace ambiguity, to acknowledge that life doesn’t always fit neatly into our preconceived notions of right and wrong.
Foster care is messy.
There is nothing neat or organized about it. It’s a whirlwind of emotions, a tangle of legalities, and a rollercoaster of highs and lows. Yet, within this chaos, there is beauty and profound meaning waiting to be discovered.
But until we realize this and ALLOW it all, we will be adding unnecessary guilt and shame to our journey.
It’s essential to grant ourselves the grace to accept the messiness of foster care. The guilt and shame we often carry stem from our desire to control the uncontrollable, to fix the unfixable. When we release the need for perfection and embrace the mess, we free ourselves to love more authentically and deeply.
The good news? The loving and praying for, rooting for, and encouraging of bio family never has to stop, regardless of the kids’ final stop.
Love knows no boundaries or time limits. The compassion we extend to bio families, the hope we hold for their redemption and healing, can endure indefinitely. It’s a testament to the enduring power of love, even in the face of adversity.
In this way, foster care ceases to be “temporary,” and instead becomes a lifelong assignment to love everyone involved.
Foster care isn’t just about providing a temporary haven for children in need. It’s about committing to a lifetime of love, understanding, and support for all those touched by the journey. It’s about acknowledging that the bonds we form, both with the children and their bio families, can extend far beyond the confines of a specific placement.
And, at the end of the day, that’s really what we’re here to do anyway. ❤️🩹
In the messiness of foster care, we discover the true essence of our humanity—our capacity to love unconditionally, our ability to hold space for conflicting emotions, and our commitment to creating a better world for the vulnerable.
So, let us embrace the Both/And of foster care, the messy complexity that defines this journey. Let us release the burden of unnecessary guilt and shame and replace them with compassion and understanding. And let us remember that, above all, we are here to love—foster children, bio families, and each other.
Together, we can navigate the beautiful mess that is foster care, one loving step at a time.