(This is the draft I thought I posted months ago.. but somehow lost..)
Every couple of months, I get a new follower. Today someone started to follow me and I couldn’t remember when the last time I wrote. (its been a long long time) I’ve looked through my 17 drafts.. found a couple I should clean up and publish. I posted one.. the rest I’ll save for a rainy day.
I’m not done.. I still have grandchildren at home to raise. Girlie is living her grown up life, boychild is now manchild spending days working and nights out with friends.
Almost six years have passed since I started on this journey. I still struggle with the shift my life has taken, but I keep on keeping on. I still wonder what my life would have been like. I want to tell grandparents/kinshippers/foster parents.. its hard, but it is still so very worth it. There are days I wish we could be “just grandparents” but this is our normal now.
I still struggle with feelings of guilt .. not doing enough for the littles, not doing enough for the bigs, not doing enough for my husband.. but in the end.. it is enough.
It is doing the routines day in and day out. Making those HUGE memories (camping trips, school projects and special days) and the small ones that will someday morph into one amalgamated memory. (playing cards in the evenings before bed.. spending a Saturday cleaning , followed up by pizza and a movie)
It is enough. Dinners and lunches, field trips and dentist appointments. It is the day to day minutia we live that will keep them going. The weekly phone calls with bio-parents and the yearly visits…they live for those moments.
In the mythical mind of an abandoned child… the lost parent is the savior, the one who would really make things better, who wouldn’t care if socks matched or if your hair was brushed. the one who has the greatest ideas for fun ..
I try hard not to smash the myth of the mythical parent.. but I’m only human and I can’t say I haven’t stooped to the level of “No, I’m not your mother.. I’m HERE, working to raise you and love you and make you a productive citizen! ” I’m not proud of those times, but as I said.. I’m human.
For all the time in-between the visits and the phone calls they still have to live.
That’s what we do. We get on with the ugly business of daily living. Of loving during the unlovable times and standing strong in the face of “you aren’t my MOTHER”. The slammed doors and stomping feet of adolescence takes on a new meaning when you remember there are some things you will not be good enough for.
BUT, in their hearts, you are so very good enough, and you are wonderful. You stand up and cheer at concerts, you burn the grilled cheese and you put the duct tape on the favorite pair of sneakers. You grab the macaroni necklace out of the trash bag and you put it in a special box for safe keeping. You are the steady rock and the steadfast faith.
To the other Kinshippers out there… don’t give up. Keep loving and praying. Keep checking the homework and buying the groceries. The path we took is one less traveled by .. and it has made all the difference.