Tuesday, February 21, 2012

My Baby's Baby Shower










My best friend from high school, my sister, my sister-in-law and my Mother-in-law threw me the prettiest baby shower that I have ever seen. I was blown away by how over and above they went to make it so nice.

If you can't tell, this new little one will be totally spoiled.



I hate to add this to this post, but I am going to. Remember back when you first got licensed and you waited for your first call telling you your very first foster child was on their way? Well, back when that was me, there was no baby shower. There was no toddler shower. There was no diaper shower. There was no party. There was no get together.

When I found out we were officially getting my first foster daughter my sister went out and bought us a very nice car seat for her. One of my sis-in-laws sent me a package that had a few toys, an outfit, a few sippy cups, ect.

That was it.

I really hope that those two know that I still remember that THEY were the only two that did anything like that and it meant the world to me. When our first little girl came home, I didn't see my first foster baby. I saw my daughter. She meant just as much to me at the time as the little girl we just celebrated a few days ago. I still love her a lot, but have had to let some of that go because if I kept loving her like I did I would go steal her back and bring her home. Just kidding...kind of.

A few people did other nice things. My other sis-in-law gave me TONS of her daughter nice clothes that she had out grown and that was very appreciated too. My Grandma would pick up toys and clothes for her at garage sales (just like she did for the other grandkids) and at Christmas time everyone bought her gifts just like they did for the rest of the kids. Everyone accepted her as one of our kids and was very kind to her...but, no party.

Then there was foster child #2, #3 (Lizzy), #4, #5, #6 and #7. Obviously no parties...plus, when you see that in those two years we had 7 children walk through the door it is easy to see that a party or a shower would have been over kill...I guess even for the first one.

I have seen on one foster mama's blog that when she gets a new placement (from what I have seen she has only taken 2 kids in the past 4 years) her friends did have a baby shower for each child. I guess hers were a little different though because the situations was highly adoptable. Still, I thought that it was just so awesome that she got a shower for them. Having people acknowledge that these kids are worth celebrating makes my heart so happy.

I really wish we all lived closer to each other so that those of us who "get it" could throw showers, diaper showers, toddler showers, sip and see's or WHATEVER for each other.

When you all get new kids I am so excited for you.

When you are going through the adjustment period of getting used to each other I smile and remember all the times I have done that.

When bio parents are doing well I try to be happy for them with you while you "try" to be happy for them too.

When cases go towards termination I get really excited for you all (even though I guess I'm not supposed to).

It is hard to do something that is SO different from what everyone else in your life is doing. You don't expect anything from anyone, but when someone does do something really nice for you it means so much and it makes you think about how the child in your home just doesn't quite get celebrated the way other biological children do, and it bugs me.

So, to all of you that are waiting for your first placement, I AM SO EXCITED FOR YOU!!!

To any of you that are taking care of your first placement, THAT CHILD IS SO BEAUTIFUL AND I AM SO GLAD YOU GET TO BE THEIR MAMA!

And for those of you on numbers 2-202, THOSE KIDS OF YOURS ARE GORGEOUS! I BET THEY ARE A LOT OF WORK AND I BET THEY ARE WORTH EVERY BIT OF IT. KEEP GOING, THEY NEED YOU...

....and maybe we need them just as much too.

14 comments:

Maggie said...

Love this. I have thought of this very thing!

Mitzy said...

BEAUTIFUL post!

After giving birth to four children and receiving so much love from family and friends, when Primo, our first foster child, arrived in our home I felt that something was missing. I was exhausted and sleep deprived and had a beautiful baby in my arms. I kept asking myself "what's missing?" It was almost like a muscle memory, my mind kept asking "where are the visitors, the gifts, the food?"

Thanks for the love!

Rachael said...

Your shower looks really lovely! I was lucky enough to have a foster shower, where my sister and mom and friends all got us basic things we'd need for a kid in our age range, which was really helpful. I'm sad that I seem to be in the minority on that, though, because it seems that most foster parents don't have one! It's such an interesting problem.

Carrie said...

Your shower looks beautiful! So happy for you. And, I can only speak for myself, but I would love to hear about your baby too as well as the foster care "stuff." :) I was also blessed by my church family with a beautiful shower and lots of things to help us get started. It is such a strange thing, though. Loved this post.

Mama 2 Many said...

First, your shower was gorgeous.
Second, I totally get what you are saying. We have been blessed with really great people around us. We have only been foster parents for just around 6 months bug have had 8 children, 4 placements. We have not had a shower but people bring food and clothes, toys and lots of prayers.

I wish we all lived closer too because even though people show they care they will never truly 'get it.'

Aspiring Earth Mama said...

"Having people acknowledge that these kids are worth celebrating makes my heart so happy." --- Amen. How can everyone not see this??

CherubMamma said...

I've had a different response with each placement. On our first placement (a sibling group of two), my sister and her husband sent us $200. We used that money to go buy the girls bicycles. It was so awesome to be able to do that early in the placement when all the extra money was going towards daily needs (building a wardrobe, school supplies, etc.)

Our second placement was simple enough and no one responded "physically". I had lots of prayers and emotional support. But little else.

When Dude & Dolly came our church really helped. It was such a blessing!! We didn't have a party, but they let the entire church know of our immediate needs and many, many people stepped in with things to meet those needs.

Foster parents do have to stick together! Thank you for this post. It was beautiful!

Tammy (aka. "Mimi") said...

When I first became licensed over three years ago, I was SO BLESSED to have friends and co-workers throw not one, but TWO baby showers for me in order to try to get most of the things that I would need to have on-hand for my age range.

Three years and six kiddos later, the "newness" and excitement that other people felt has worn off, and like Mitzy said, whenever I get a new baby I always feel like something is missing. I always get a little sad when I'm home alone with a new little one in my arms. I'M so full of love and excitement, but sometimes it seems like I'm the only one.

I am extremely thankful for the handful of friends and family who try their best to be excited for me and to make my babies feel like "my" babies. I know it's hard to be excited for someone who will inevitably lose their child, but when my kids are with me, they're "mine," and I have all of the joy and emotions that ANY new parent would have.

These kids are worth celebrating! You CAN be happy for me! I am... :-)

Debbie said...

Beautiful post. I was blown away at the support our parents showed when we brought the girls home. I didn't expect it at all especially since they live so far away. It wasn't anything huge but they honored our foster girls as a new addition to the family and that was special.
And the first time around when we got the call about adopting our daughter (not foster care) I remember well my SIL going shopping with me that weekend and helping me make sure I got everything I needed.

So glad your new blessing is getting spoiled.

Mama P said...

I adore you! I think about this often.

I don't need a baby shower to love my kids...I don't need other people to provide me with the things they need. It sure would be nice, though, for anyone to recognize the value of foster children as much as a new biological child.

I do kind of wish anyone would offer to do a "welcome home" party for our boys...no one has even offered anything at all, or even to come by and meet them. :(

Alison said...

I've gone back and forth on my feelings about it. It gets hardest when I think about the possibility (that any couple has) of never being able to have bio children.

The hardest time for me was going to my SIL's baby shower that the family threw for her. J isn't even recognized as a grandchild and here Kent and I were buying EVERYthing on our own to foster and the nicest thing anyone did was another SIL bought him an outfit. On one hand, I want to have a shower when we have our own first child, but on the other hand- We've spent thousands already buying everything we need! And I've had to sit through other showers along the way. That's when it burns.

The truth is that, if we never can have our own child- I'll be upset that no one even offered to throw us a shower before we fostered. But if we do ever get pregnant- I'm going to put the fanciest, most eco-friendly, annoying mommy gadgets on my registries for them to all read and weep! :) lol.

Cindy said...

That is a beautiful post! I've been thinking about this lately too. 3 weeks ago we got our 4th placement, a sibling group, an 8-month-old girl and a 4-year-old boy. For the first 2 weeks the baby was up as much as a newborn and the transition has been hard! I have not had any of the help the last few weeks that I got when I had my 3 bio kids. I think some of my friends already think I'm supermom and I don't need the help. But it's not true! I'm just a regular mom like them who is willing to adjust my life and be a little inconvienenced because I want to help these kids. And even though it's hard I wouldn't trade my experiences and knowing these kids for anything. I love your blog because it is so nice to know that someone else gets it.

Karen said...

It looks like you had a BEAUTIFUL baby shower! So pretty!

We had a family that brought us a meal shortly after my parents brought my foster sister Piglet home from the hospital. It was a delicious meal, but they say it's "the thought that counts", which made it even more amazing- that they would take the time, and treat us just like it was a new biological child, was so amazing.

Anonymous said...

Love this! During our time fostering, we had much the same treatment, no showers, very little rejoicing, but the very, very few people who did things like bring us a meal or a new outfit for our baby, I am forvever grateful too. Even the 1st couple of adoption showers (parties we threw ourselves, people never seemed to know what to do). I hadve had the hardest time attending baby showers with a good attitude because of this. Glad I'm not the only one who struggles with this!