Monday, February 06, 2012
I've always wanted a girl. Since i was a young child, i have a box that i've kept of keepsakes (dresses i wore when i was a baby, things i had when i was younger) to be able to give to my daughter when i had one. I started this box at the age of five when i outgrew one of my favorite dresses. i've had this box with me all these years, kept in the rafters of whatever house i was living in, waiting for that one day when i could proudly pull it out & dress my daughter in that dress, share with her all the secrets of my childhood... Imagine my surprise the other day when i did get the daughter that i've always wanted, but not as an infant... instead in the form for an almost 16 year old young woman.
Nine years ago i met a guy who was a wonderful man. He soon got with a woman who had 4 children. Through some tough economic times & bad choices, that woman's, almost now 16 year old daughter, has landed in my custody & house. It's been an uphill battle since we've been attempting to get her since last August, when her mom lost her residence. The mother had already lost custody of the 2 younger children & the older child is now almost 20. The mother wasn't willing to let us have her last August though, whether it was stubborn pride, or what, i don't know, but she was more content with her daughter living in a van with her & her boyfriend in the WalMart parking lot than letting her have a nice stable place to live with a family that really cared about her. Since then, they've jumped from home to home, the child's grades slipping fately & her attitude on the decline.
On January 20th, i received a text from her asking if she could come stay at my house for the weekend. She said that her sister was supposed to pick her up from school the week prior & didn't, she had no way to get ahold of her mother since she had lost her phone in a snow storm & had been staying at her boyfriend's house for the week during the snow storm, but at that point it wasn't an option anymore. I told her that i wouldn't turn her away if she showed up at my house. She showed up & spent the weekend with me. On Sunday, i received an email from her mother (who had not contacted me in 6 months) that she had reported her daughter has a runaway. Throughout the weekend i had talked to this young lady & she didn't desire to return to her mother's care. Once receiving the email, i handed her my phone & told her she could either call the cops & report that she wasn't a runaway or she could call her mom. She opted to call the cops.
She was placed in a group home while the state figured out what the best steps were for her & during that time the mother decided that she didn't want to deal with her anymore, admiting that my house was the better option for her. I was at first apalled at the mother's actions, but also understand that sometimes the alternative is the best option.
At church last week we prayed for the young lady. She was still in the group home & in part, the state seemed to be dragging their feet on getting approval for her to be at my house. The judge had ordered her placed in my custody as soon as CPS approved me as a suitable care provider for her. Our Pastor prayed for the young lady to be placed in our house by Wednesday. Many people doubted this... who has ever seen the state move THAT fast? Imagine my surprise when on Wednesday night, i was signing paperwork for custody!!! Thursday afternoon was a joy to drive up to Seattle to the group home & hold her in my arms, both of us crying.
She is working into the grove of the house, doing chores with the boys, riding out on the quad, having fun with the family... it's great to have her there. There are some rules that she has to the follow, because we still have CPS sitting on our tails, but they aren't hard rules & she's all in all a really good girl. She's in all AP classes at school & despite having no credits for 1st Semester, she is working hard in her year-long classes in order to attempt to make up some of those missed credits during 2nd semester. She'll have to take summer school, but that's okay with her too. The biggest joy is that i get to enroll her in Driver's Education.
So, i guess God has a plan. I've always wanted alot of children, but apparently His plan was for me to raise other people's children. I can't say that i'm totally okay with it. I really wanted to carry a child of my own & raise one of my own, but i guess the values & wisdom that i have to pass on can be passed on through other children & hopefully they will be better people for that in the future.
I've always wanted a girl, and that box is still there. One of these years, i know one of my 'children' will bless me with a grand-daughter (hopefully not too soon since my oldest is now almost 16) and that box will be there ready for her. I've always wanted a girl... i just didn't figure she would be this old when i got her... perhaps she'll still let me do her hair & put her in silly outfits though?