Foster Arizona Community Blog

Educating & Empowering Arizona's Families
29
Jun

A Day in the Life of: Foster Family

Trauma, don’t you just hate that word? I mean really think about what weight that word carries. Trauma means that something traumatic has happened to someone. Think about the stories you see on the news about the domestic violence gone bad, kids found. Horrible neglect, kids found. Drug house busted, kids found. Just because the news story ended doesn’t mean the kids are all safe and better. No, they come to us. The foster families and we are left to try to pick up the broken pieces and put them back together. This is one of the hardest jobs I have ever been called to do.

Foster care is hard……like REALLY hard. It’s hard on the whole family. We all sacrifice more than I could have ever imagined we would. Especially now that we have one placement whose trauma is so deep that sometimes we feel like we are slaves to it. She often dictates everything we do. That is hard.

It would be easy to get mad or have a pity party. It would be easy to have her disrupted. We didn’t get into foster care because we thought it would be easy, we got into foster care because we were called. God called us and we said yes. Yes. Yes is how we became a family who is in the trauma trenches. And I am so grateful we are.

You see, I’ve been able to watch as the other kids process how to love someone who can be so terrible to their mom. I’ve been able to see my husband have to fight to love someone who he struggles to even like at times, but he does it.  Her trauma comes out in attacks on me. Instead of them getting mad, or harboring resentment towards her, they dig deep into the WHY of the behavior. We talk a lot about the WHY behind the behavior as a family, because if we can see past the behavior to the brokenness then we are able to love her the way she needs. I truly believe God has given foster families the gift of seeing past the behavior to the brokenness.

We as a family are learning to love as Christ loves. We fail daily, but thankfully his mercies are new every morning. My kids are learning to love even knowing they will get hurt. These kids are not our’s. They will leave and we will break. We will crumble and cry, yes, even for our girl and the war she brings. Why? Why would we choose to sacrifice our family this way? My question back to you is if not us then who?

People say “You are such a blessing to those kids”, but the truth is, they bless our family way more than we could ever them. God is doing a mighty work in the lives of everyone in our home right now. The war is a tough one but we serve a God who is victorious over every battle. We know God grows us the most when we are the most uncomfortable, so I am digging deep and trusting that when this war is over we will be able to look back and see what God did in us. Then, because we are a foster family we will gear up to start another war. This is who we are now and I think we are all better because of it.

Stacy Bradley

Foster Mom

 

2 Responses

  1. Thank you for sharing, Stacy. I appreciate hearing your perspective as I’m not “in the trauma trenches” myself as a foster parent. I can’t imagine the amount of disruption it must cause your family, and then to gaze into the heart of that child and see God working in and through them. All I can say is thank you for what you do.

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