Yesterday Puddin' went to breakfast with her soon-to-be forever parents. Yesterday was the first Mother's Day that her forever Mommy got to celebrate Mother's Day. I'm an old hand now -- it was my 15th -- but looking at the joy and disbelief on her soon-mommy's face made it all new again.
We have been talking a lot to Puddin' about her new family and her new home. As adults, we can see that permanence -- that magic word -- is what she most needs. She however, is anxious and ambivalent right now. In two consecutive sentences she will say "I go to Mama/Daddy's house" and in the next, "I love MeMaw house." She wakes crying in the night. Last night she was restless and could not sleep. Finally we just brought her back out to the sofa and let her drift off out here. She truly is so sweet and I do love her.
Herein lies the challenge in fostering. I think that I am the kind of person who can get along with any child, and I seem to have a knack for getting all the kids moving in the same direction. The hard part for me is in handing over those reins of parenting completely to someone else. Even when, as in this case, it's a happy ending. It's hard to not give advice or tips. Although I know full well that a child who eats green beans or watermelon in my home may never eat it in another. And although our bedtime routine works for her, it is mostly because it works for me, and another routine all together may work equally well. I think it is something I will grow into with experience.
Tomorrow will not be easy; we get teary just talking about it. We will all miss our Puddin' Pop -- and The Captain will surely miss his now-best-friend. Yet there are many things to be grateful for, like the wonderful parents and future awaiting her. It will be good for Sunshine to have her room back and the logistics with 25% fewer "Littles" will be simpler. In all, I am surrendering to the experience of loving and letting go. I am so grateful for our springtime together and am curious as to what the summer will hold!