28th April, 2017
Last year, I wrote a blog about those nerve-wracking feelings and experiences when you meet your foster child for the first time. I appreciate that not all Foster Carers get the opportunity to meet their children prior to placement, such is the urgency of many case requirements, but when you do get the opportunity, and that child comes to you for tea for the first time, it’s a stressful feeling.
I thought in this case then, that it may be an idea to write about how our one of our first meetings actually panned out with a child Capstone wanted to place in our home. It was an eventful and informative five hours, and it went something like this:
Social worker and child arrive an hour early – Watsons in chaos.
Child refuses to come into the house – Watsons accept they are going to be awful at fostering.
Dog escapes into street mid-confusion – Watsons grovel to neighbours about state of flowerbeds.
Husband glances at freshly prepped fajitas and reveals he no longer eats chicken – Watsons resist argument until next alone.
Child makes a comment about “robbing the house” – Watsons pray it’s a nervous joke.
Dog breaks tension by stealing peppers from the table – Watsons forgive dog for previous neighbourhood carnage.
Child sulks at being snubbed by the cat – Watsons try to pacify the child.
Cat sulks at being ousted by the child – Watsons try to pacify the cat.
Child disappears to the bathroom – Watsons fear death and/or destruction in moment of absence.
Clock strikes 6.30pm – Watsons wonder if this has been the longest two hours of their lives to date.
Child states he’s going out for a cigarette – Watsons remind child he’s a child.
Husband strikes up conversation about smoking – Watsons unite in setting out ground rules.
Child questions the ground rules – Watsons unite in reiterating the ground rules.
Dog steals limelight by vomiting – Watsons wonder why bad things happen to good people.
Child asks Watsons questions – Watsons try hard to be honest but brief.
Watsons ask child questions – Watsons try hard to be non-judgemental.
Child talks about an argument he’s had with his brother – Watsons try to remember if a brother was mentioned in the paperwork?
Husband shows child around the house to their room – Watsons panic that the child will hate it.
Child says he loves it – Watsons relax for the first time all evening.
Dog appears at the door and cat jumps onto the bed – Watsons realise they may have a shot at being good foster family after all.
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