It took me years to learn this lesson. Maybe I was a slow learner. But when I learned it, I wanted to share it with all new foster parents.
Stirring the Pot
I never could figure out why, just as things started going smoothly, he would find some reason to be upset, be angry, explode, or just plain start trouble. I get it now. I finally get it. After so many years of life surrounded by constant feuding, fighting and angry outbursts. I thought he would enjoy the even, calm atmosphere of our home. But it seems that every time we get to that equilibrium, he throws it back into chaos. Now I get it. That chaos is the only familiar thing to him. Our house, ur family, our way of life is so very different for him. He must feel as lost as an exchange student in a foreign land. No wonder he finds comfort in stirring things up. It creates a familiar environment. He feels he knows the rules of how to survive in that atmosphere. I get it. He already has the barriers built to protect him from that treatment. He isn't familiar with the love, the trust, and automatically starts building new barriers. I get it. But now, God, help me live with it. Help me introduce him to this new culture. Help him learn to explore it, feel comfortable in it. Help him to relax in it and , someday with you help, to thrive. Amen.
Excerpted from "The Caring Heart Speaks: Meditations for foster, kinship, and adoptive parents" by Gail Underwood Parker Artwork by Anna Parker David from the book cover.