My Moment in Time
The telephone rang as I sat watching the water in the river glistening in the noonday sun. Such a beautiful scene invokes a serenity that moves me easily through my day. That serenity was shattered by the conversation that followed the blaring ring of my now ominous telephone.
Normally, a phone call from Melissa uplifts my spirits. Having gone through so many case managers in the journey as a foster mother, Melissa was a much needed breath of fresh air. Now, as I listened intently and silently to her words, my calm melted away as I felt each one of her words rip my heart apart piece by piece. Until now, I felt sure that the parental rights of my baby’s parents would be terminated leaving her open for my family to adopt her. In this moment, Melissa carefully spoke of permanent guardianship as though she awaited the sadness of my answer.
From a bird’s eye view, one might think that is a reason to celebrate. I would get to keep Amaya indefinitely as a guardian, right? The thought sounds like a wonderful end to a difficult journey, except…The parents can come back. They can come back at any time to open the case and possible sweep her out of our loving arms and happy family. I sat stiffly as Melissa tried to console me with nonsense statistics that fell on deaf ears. Tears streamed down my face as she told me that there is only a small percentage that get their children back after this. One percent loomed as large as one hundred percent as far as my heart was concerned. How could I make a decision that would affect a child that has been through so much as well as my own children? How could I deal with an emotionally charged situation with something as cold as logic? We already love her, are in love with her. What if? What if her parents cleaned up? What if a judged ruled to give her back in one year or in five years? Can I brace myself and my family for such a possible outcome for an indefinite period of time?
My voice broke as words painfully passed my closing throat. I whispered ever so softly into the phone before I knew it, “This hurts so badly.” Melissa allowed my shaken silence as words escaped my grasp and my mind became numb. Tears shocked the warmth of my face as icicles that felt like pins adding to the pain with each one that left my weary eyes. The pain filled my chest as the visions quickly raced through my mind of losing her in some unknown future moment. My Amaya. My little Amaya.
I had a decision to make that would affect so many people. Do I take a chance and accept this commitment? Doing so could mean anguish in the end for my family, my children, my Amaya. Do I allow them to find another home for her and suffer the pain now? Doing that would hurt just as much. Doing that would mean never holder her. Doing that would mean a life of worry and anguish as I worried about her safety, her happiness.
The mercy that is given with a long prayer and a night of sleep never ceases to amaze me. With the dawn and the opening of my eyes came a new dawn and a new opening of my eyes. The feeling, that God is in control, swept through me and set a release in the dark places that were opened wide with a single phone call.
This is my child in my heart and in my home. Come what may, I will take this moment in time that God has graciously entrusted to me. I will take this time that He has given me to love and nurture a child for a short time or a long time. This special treasure will stay with me as I hold her, love her, and appreciate my moment in time.
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