Tuesday, November 2, 2010

"Just" the Foster Parent

I don't reallly think of myself as "just" a foster parent.  I know it is an important job, and that I have been given a lot of responsibility.  If I had to give one of my children to a total stranger to care for for an undetermied amount of time, I personally don't know how I would ever trust that person wholeheartedly.

That being said, I often wonder what case workers think of the foster parents they are working with.  I know they are over-worked and - usually - underpaid, and while they have to deal with many cases of children, I have just two.  There's that word again - JUST.  Really?  While I may only have two foster children, each child comes with a birth mother.  Each visit has to be supervised, so there are two more people added into that equation.  Our baby has transportation provided once a week (while I take him twice a week), so add on three more people.  Then there are respite placements, of which I've had three different people for that.  Then you get the doctors and therapists.  Are you ready?  Here's my doctor list:  physical therapist, developmental specialist, neurologist, allergist, pediatric specialist, an ENT doctor, audiologist, assessment therapists, dentist and pediatrician.  Whew! 

Back to my point.  I get emails from the case workers asking to switch my days around for a visit.  They ask me when a good alternative time is.  There are days when I want to reply back sarcastically and say, "well,  why don't you take a look at the five or more previous emails I've replied to you with my schedule that says the days I am available?" I'm sure pressing the send button on my computer would put a smile on my face.  Instead, I reply back to them for the umpteenth time telling them what days I am available and what days I work - our weekly schedule.

Don't get me wrong.  I do like my case workers - both of them.  But there are days....

Like today.  I show up for the usual visit time, only to be greeted with, "I don't think there is a visit today.  Didn't anyone call you?"  No.  "Let me double check." . . . . "You can go on home, there is no visit today."

Just like that.  No phone call, no email. 

I guess today I was

Just the Foster Parent

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