Remember when we were little kids and we really, really wanted the teacher to choose us to answer a question or help her with some special task? Our arms were waving in the air, we could hardly keep our butts in our seats, our entire upper bodies were wiggling as an extension of those waving arms. “Pick me! Pick me!,” we called out.
That’s the feeling I’ve got right now. Hey, social worker – pick me! Choose our family! We’re ready to welcome a foster child.
As we get older, we learn to hide how much we want something. We’ll raise our hand quietly, if at all. Because who wants to be embarrassed and disappointed if we are not chosen?
But I want this. I really want this. So I emailed my social worker again – this time under the pretext that I forgot to mention that I’ll be a stay-at-home mom over Christmas break for two and half weeks. How perfect for respite care! I’ll be right here to actively care for any foster kids who need a place to stay over the holidays.
A battle rages on inside me. Part of me worries that the social worker is annoyed or amused by my emails. What if in a fit of pique she decides to skip over me, “that pesky” foster mama hopeful? Part of me confidently says advocating for children requires courage and a banishment of pride. My emails are crafted carefully: breezy, not desperate. I only email every 2-4 weeks. And the squeaky wheel gets the grease, right?
So I throw it out to you. How do you walk that fine line between reminding your social worker that you’re still there, waiting for a placement versus calling the social worker every five seconds?