Through the classes the biggest thing, and I think the most helpful, I learned was about the way children react out of their fears. This really deals with the behavior of a child under traumatic stress. We wrote a paper on how we act from the fears we have in our lives, and I really learned a lot from that exercise. I think it's easy for me to have what we call in the system "the old way of thinking." This is the thought that a child is always aware of their behaviors, so they act out on purpose or to get back at you. I think this can be true in some areas of life, but the one thing that I learned was this isn't always the case. Sometimes, in the midst of fear, children go into safety mode, and the safety mode causes behavioral fears. Obviously this is triggered from the stress of a new environment, new rules, new family etc. It was good for me to learn because I think in some moments it will be easier for me to recognize those moments, and the difference between the 2 reasons for certain behaviors.
So, now that class is over, I have 2 more assessments and then I'll be licensed. I am eagerly waiting the moment when I will actually get my license, but in the meantime I will be helping another family out with their foster children. I start that on Wednesday, and I will be helping until I get officially placed with someone. I think this will be good because it will help me learn the ropes some, and I will get more kiddo experience, which I am grateful.
Also, in the meantime I am starting my "family planning." This includes a fire escape plan, rules, plans about how to clean rooms in the house, schedules and emergency numbers. All of these things have to be written out and placed where everyone can see them in the house. I have thought of a lot of cute ways to do it, but it's hard to write out stuff that you do by second nature. I want to cover everything and be fair, it's funny how this may be one of the hardest things for me to write in the meantimeness. But, hopefully I'll come up with some good explanations and good followable rules, I guess we'll see. Well, the Cardinals are losing, and I am hoping the pull through and we take the W! But, before I go to cheer them on, below I have a little bit more to read, it's an exert from Fostering Hope, and I also have my fancy official foster care graduate certificate! Enjoy!
Fostering Hope by Deb Shropeshire
"When we being to see people for who they were created to be, instead of who they are on the surface, it is easier to believe in them. And when WE believe in them, it is easier for them to begin to believe in themselves. I want to believe in people. In their potential. In the possibilities of their lives. In the awareness that a bad decision is not the same thing as a bad person. In the knowledge that we all make mistakes and none of us are perfect. In the hope that the future can be different than the past."
- Pray for the kids in foster care as they make a transition to break the chain that their family is living under. Pray they will see that they can be different, no matter what they have been told in the past. Pray the the foster parents and the workers would not see them as projects but rather as children. Lastly, pray that the foster care workers and parents would see the children and the parents as they should, in the image of God because once we start looking at people that way our perspective changes.