“D” was a fragile 3 days old when she joined our family. She was smaller in size for her gestational age. I remember how her clothes would just hang off of her tiny body. I even remember how she would just lay there, no affect, no movement, just —there. Fast forward 11 months!
She was grabbing at and holding her bottle, completely filling out her 9 months size outfits and shoes and, most importantly, the full laugh that she would giggle whenever her siblings, my other children, were around. She was a pure joy!
Before I met her mom, I was angry with her. Angry that her choices contributed to this baby’s massive struggles. But then I met her! Single mom, displaced from her family, employment, and home. Her disheveled appearance told me that she was even about to be displaced from life! Her anguish forced me to look deeper into my own shortcomings and struggles and all I could see was God’s Grace and Mercy. Honestly a few more bad decisions and I could have been her.
So, I started texting pictures and memo’s of “D” babbling and I began to receive messages that started to speak life. She was regaining her will to succeed. She was pushing forward to getting better and every time she reached a milestone, I would send another image of her daughter.
I remember getting the phone call that said, we will be picking “D” up at 10 on Sunday….a week prior to her birthday.
My heart stopped, because my baby girl was leaving. Then my heart jumped, because her mom had taken her life back.
So many emotions, so many thoughts.
My takeaway from having the privilege of fostering this baby and her mom into wellness and wholeness is nothing short of the blessing in realizing just how valuable we are to God’s Kingdom! More than compensating for our own loss is the ability to be supporting, loving and compassionate to someone who needs it the most!
*The goal of foster care is to reunify these children with their biological family. The Phifer family is reflecting the grace and forgiveness that God gives us everyday when they show grace to the biological parents of the children in their care. As we are praying for our foster families we also pray for the biological families to be healed and reunified.