I woke up to a stirring baby. My eye looked at the clock, then shut in denial. Then in a heartbeat, I knew that I could use the bathroom, get clothes on, grab a cup of coffee, and catch the news headlines if I acted fast before she began crying. Suddenly I sprung into action!
I watched the headlines while the angel bounced on my knee. She smiled that smile that makes my day. My wife gave me a small polka dot dress. I helped her put it on while she laughed at me. I managed not to see much news because the baby won my heart and attention instead. She was particularly sweet.
Then my wife got the call just a few hours later. The judge had decided her birth parents had satisfied the minimal requirements for their kids to be placed back in their home. And though I am exhausted from the 3 am feedings, juggling work/day-care schedules, and, of course, constantly falling behind on cleaning the house, I suddenly joined the club of foster parents who give these beloved children back to parents who struggle just to pass a drug test.
We only had these kids about a month and a half, but the investment, the bonding, the joy and sacrifice has been 24/7 and runs deep. Our family hurts!
It was so hard to watch that little polka dot dress disappear in the car and drive away.