It’s been a while…
9 months and 23 days to be exact since my last post. A lot has happened. In the last 3 months in particular and I just haven’t had the words to describe it so I’ve been pretty quiet.
My husband and I committed ourselves to foster kids. We felt God lay that desire on our hearts since before we were married and we opened our home last August. We walked deep in the trenches of children’s pain. Children we loved hard and cared deeply for. It was a crazy and chaotic but we knew that it was where we were supposed to be.
In January we were told that we needed to get a house with more bedrooms to keep our kids together. We listened to God, stepped out in faith, and moved our family of 7 in 3 weeks. That’s how dedicated we were to these kids. We wanted these kids to know that they mattered and that while in our home- they were no different than our biological daughter.
Seven months into fostering was the sweetest season for me personally. I had struggled with my role as a mom for so long and during that time I finally felt like I was where I needed to be. My past and every bad memory suddenly made sense. I had asked God for one request.
I wanted God to take every single horrible thing that had ever happened to me and use it. I didn’t want the adversary to win. I didn’t need closure. I didn’t need to see my mom, stepdad, or any other person who had abused me in jail. After a lot of really hard days, temper tantrums, and backtalking I was seeing God answer my request. He was helping those kids and blessing me with the opportunity to be a part of it.
I have a unique situation. I have knowledge of the system from all sides. I know the child’s point of view because I was in Foster Care myself. I have worked or volunteered with DHS in several roles similar to social work so I am very familiar with their jobs, the challenges they face, and typically how things go. As a foster parent with two of the hardest cases in my county, I got first-hand knowledge of how many challenges there were as a foster parent. I thought that having knowledge on all sides would help. Turns out it can be a blessing and a curse at the same time.
After everything seemed to fall into place it was ripped right from underneath us and it just kept getting worse. Not long after moving into our house I lost my job and less than a month after that the kids were ripped from our home. After all was said and done we had a closed home, a million unanswered questions, and broken hearts with no idea how to even pick up the pieces.
I’m not perfect. Sit with me and I’ll tell you every single thing I did wrong. There were quite a few things. I still struggle with that fact and wish I could have done things a little better because maybe it would have helped the system to see my heart instead of shutting our family out so quickly. My mistakes in no way justify the outcome of this whole mess but I’m not afraid to admit my mistakes.
Psalm 119:71 Says,
My suffering was good for me, for it has taught me to pay attention to your decrees.
I will gladly take every single mistake and grow from it. I don’t get better if I don’t. I will never be perfect. I am a sinner and I need God more than anything in this world. Walking out of this horrible season my husband and I hold tight to one truth;
We have absolutely no regrets about advocating for the kids in our care. There are no costs too high and no attack to unbearable when a kid’s stability is at stake. Kid’s who don’t have a voice. Kids who take a long time to trust in those who have been entrusted to care for them. Kids who’re only desire is to have stability and a safe place. We would do the same for our child and a foster child is no different.
All of it happened so quick. One day we were tucking them in bed, getting excited about Pre-K graduation and discussing what the next year looked like for our soon to be High Schooler. Then I blinked and they were gone. Some days I still feel like I will see them running to the door and sticking their faces into the doorbell camera to announce their presence.
When they were taken and we had to close I was left in a horrible state. I began having panic attacks that would last hours long. I faced depression and a feeling of loss too painful for words. Functioning became a minute by minute thing.
For the first time in my life, I wasn’t strong. I couldn’t see the bright side. There was no finish line to focus on. Only A quiet empty house that used to be filled, anger, confusion, and pain. Through it, my husband and family have been amazing. In every other time in my life being strong wasn’t an option because there wasn’t anybody there to help me. Sitting down would just screw me. Maybe that’s why God protected me for so long.
So here we are…
I am finally able to see some light breaking through. Some days are better than others. I still have moments every day that I still feel sad. There’s a loss that doesn’t really go away. I see it in the school a couple of the kids are in right down the road and I feel it every time I walk by the bedrooms that are exactly the same except that they are no longer filled with giggles or belongings. You can’t replace the kids God puts in your life.
You know what??? I’m okay with that. I hope they always remember they are irreplaceable and loved more than they could ever imagine. Not just by me. By a God that loves them more than I ever could. A God that took me out of a horrible place, guided my life and is in complete control of theirs too.
I know there is a purpose to all of this. I’m still working out the details of what it looks like exactly. It may not look like fostering. After years of despising the justice, I feel deep inside my heart when I see unjust things happen that hurt others, I am finally realizing that it does, in fact, have a purpose.
God is refining it so that I can use it the right way. I’ve got a lot of growth that still needs to be done. That won’t end until I get to heaven. More than ever I want my words to unite not divide. I want to help, educate, and support. I want people to come together with their insights and feel heard so that we can work together to make changes that will positively impact every single side. I want people to see the hope I experienced not only in my childhood and in foster care, but also in this complete season of utter loss. The hope may come and go because God has not revealed the whole picture yet but it’s still there.
If you’ve made it to the end. Thanks for reading. If you get one thing out of this I hope you are reminded that God is faithful. This world is full of sin. We are never promised an easy life full of happiness and bliss. We do have a savior. He tells us to bring our burdens and he will give us rest. He wastes nothing and will use anybody willing.
If you are in a tough season I just want you to remember that. God is not the enemy. He is faithful. In his timing, not ours. If you haven’t noticed, my blog looks a lot different. Rebranded by yours truly.
With all my heart I just want to help. I want to help people live a life where they are pursuing God’s purpose for them. Feeling confident in who they are, the gifts God has given them, and how He wants them to use them. That’s the new focus of this place. When you come here I hope you find that. We are one of a kind. Made in the image of God. How would the world be different if we held onto that truth and ran with a purpose towards it? I don’t know about you, but I want to find out.
~ Lovelle ❤
I just can’t believe this. With a shortage of good quality foster homes, for you and your husband to be disqualified as foster parents is unthinkable. I am so sorry for both you and the kids. I know God will bring good from this travesty.
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What may look like the wrong thing may really be only a little part of the whole picture. I hold true to that while we walk in unknown territory. Thanks for reading ❤
I didn’t know it had been that long since you posted. I don’t understand why certain things are happening in my life, like sickness, but God told me that I didn’t need to know. I am to do His will, and I am trying. May God show you the way and reason for all this.
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Carolyn, thanks for reading, ❤
I attempt to have a God centered mindset by asking these 2 questions:
1. What can I learn from this?
2. How do you want to use this for your good?
The only answer in my situation is that people sin. We make
Mistakes. We hurt people because we are sinners in need of a savior. I’m just holding onto the truth that it’s not over. There’s not just pain and it’s done. Gods working out a way to use this situation. Don’t get me wrong. Not every day feels like that. A lot actually don’t. I just have to ask God to meet me where I am. ❤
I love the way your heart shines through this.While we may not understand this side of Heaven why some of the the pain that He allows into our lives is there, the fact that you smile through your tears and hold fast to His love and goodness in your life is a testimony that not only I but the rest of world needed to hear.
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Thank you for your sweet words. I’d like to say that it’s always like this but unfortunately it’s not. It’s a one day at a time thing. Thank you for taking time to read this ❤
I got to the end 🙂 and reading this is a help to me – just through some struggles that are unrelated to fostering but none the less, your words are a huge blessing. Thank you for them. Xxx
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I’m so glad! Pain is main no matter what the situation is. Thank you for your sweet words ❤
We have a family at church going through something similar. It’s just heartbreaking.
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I’m so sorry to hear that. I’m praying for them. If they ever need anybody to talk to have them email me and I’ll connect with them. It’s a hard and lonely thing to have to Deal with. ❤
I share in not understanding God’s purpose in allowing my husband to lose a job that he has had for 37 years, no fault of his own. Company just decided he was costing them too much money.
I have asked God “why” what seems like a million times and gotten no answer. I have now come to realize I may never know why in this life. And why doesn’t really matter anymore. What matters is “what” does God want for us now. He knows the master plan and allows what we perceive as bad things to happen for a reason.
May we just cling as tightly as we can to Him and trust that He has it all worked out for our good.
Blessings to you and your family.
I missed reading your blog so i would view your instagram account w/o having to log in! I assumed you stopped posting your blog bc of your extended family.
I am sorry for your pain! The Lord doesn’t want you to appeal?
I enjoyed reading your blog bc i like to read how you see things as a Christian and your responses.
I always wanted to have a big family such as the one you had.
I also love animals and i miss reading about Bufford.
I look forward to learning what the Lord’s purpose was in all of this for you and your family.
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That is sweet of you. I may not post as much but I am still around. Just in a season of quiet at the moment. ❤ Thanks so much for checking in on me!
You are welcome. You are fragrance in a toxic world.
You have a new dog.
God’s blessing on all of your loved ones especially Red Riding Hood.
My BELOVED mom died a few days ago so your reply was a sweet distraction.