Tuesday, November 24, 2009

My New Crazy Thought

I've had a new thought lately. I'm hesitant to tell you because I can't remember if I've told Lee. I know I've mentioned it but casual mentions don't always register with Lee so I don't know if that counts, but I will tell you all anyway.

Lee and I have always considered adoption. Now might be a good time to mention that we are not thinking about babies soon and nothing I'm about to say involves immediate actions. But yeah, Lee's sister was adopted from China when she was two so Lee has always been pro-adoption and I've always thought it sounded like a fine idea. We'll see how life goes but I've kind of figured that after two to three of our own we might adopt the rest. (We're thinking three to four total. Depending on how things are going financially, I might like more. But not so many that I have to get one of those Jon and Kate sized vans. So maybe no more than five. Are there eight-seater SUVs? I don't want a minivan. Anyways!)

But then a couple weeks ago I read White Oleander by Janet Fitch. The novel starts when Astrid, the narrator, is about 11 or 12, and is sent to foster care after her mother murders her ex-boyfriend. And it gets worse from there.

I don't want to hate on our foster care system because I'm know they're doing great work. One of my substitute teachers in elementary school had foster kids and I'm sure she was an amazing foster mom and I'm sure there are tons of incredible foster families out there. But (spoiler alert!) Astrid got stuck with some veritable nightmares. Really, there must have not been a lot of background checks or home visits going on (Granted, this is all fiction.). Or maybe they just didn't care. Or maybe there were just too many kids who needed A home that they got ANY home that would open its doors.

So now I want to be a foster parent. Because Astrid was smart, talented and kind and she deserved a better chance. And the whole time I was reading I kept thinking, "We could do a better job. We could give her a wonderful home."

image: fiskfisk


Magchunk said...

I've always thought of adopting too. Sure I want little mini-Maggies running around (or mini-Ryans) but there are so many children who don't have loving homes and I think we (at the right time - not now!) could provide that.

My parents talked about fostering but I'm the baby and by the time I was grown and moved out they were ready to be empty-nesters!

WhimsAndInconsistencies said...

I think, in our still totally hypothetical place, we would foster while we still had kids. I think we would wait til we finished having our own and are at a place where we felt like things were under control. I mean, I guess as under control as it gets. I've never kids I just envision that there's this play where you're like, "Okay, added the new one, chaos ensued, but now we're in a good rhythm again." Then we will foster/adopt.

Jamie said...

I get to work with amazing foster and adoptive parents at my "day" job and it will be one of the most rewarding decisions you ever make...

steph anne said...

I think that's awesome that more & more people are considering being foster parents. More happiness & love to provide to the world!

Han said...

There's a couple at church who are foster parents - the lady has been on local radio talking about fostering and stuff like that. They have 3 grown up kids of their own - so any foster children kinda fit in with their grandkids. ATM they have two girls staying with them who are on an exchange year thingy.

The last two kids that they had live with them were lovely but they then moved home or onto another home :(