I put together a slideshow of Grampy's 98 years with photos Shaun's mom had collected, among them this one, taken in March 1994, his 75th birthday party. When I saw Shaun and I (far left), two thoughts immediately crossed my mind. We were so in love and life was so crazy. We got married two months after this photo was taken and we'd bought our first house a couple months prior, which needed a complete gut job. Shaun was working 16 hours a day on the house, trying to get it ready for us to move into after the wedding and I was working four jobs trying, against all odds to make the ends meet.
Today, twenty-three years later....we are so in love and life is so crazy....not much has changed. :)
A month ago we agreed to take in two teenage sisters for six days. The six days have turned into 33 days, with no immediate end in sight. It goes against "strict" state regulations that there not be more than five children in a therapeutic foster home and most certainly that the foster kids genders not be mixed. Obviously we have six children in the house, and the genders are mixed, so a significant amount of "high up" people have had to do a significant amount of paperwork and conference calls and research. A worker I'm close to told me that she read all the waivers that were filled out by different people from our agency. She said the one thing that was common among what everyone said was how Shaun and I were a team, how well we communicate and work together as a unit. I like that and I'm so very grateful for him!
Six kids, three teens has meant four different school calendars, with different start and end times. At 5:30AM, in the cold and dark, I take the first one to the bus stop, several blocks away. Then the next kid leaves at 6:30 via cab, then the next kid walks to school at 7:00 and finally I walk the little guys at 8:00. Somewhere in there, I try to squeeze in my half marathon training, time with God and other things that must get done. I desperately miss my alone time in the morning....its just not the same with people up and about.
In the afternoon, I leave work and go directly to pick up kids from school and then we do the reverse order of "the wave" as they filter in. We begin homework and whatever after school and evening activities the day holds. Sometime after dinner Shaun gets home and we say hello before he plays chess with someone or monitors the teens while I go to bed. It's exhausting, but tax season always is and so is finding a new routine when there's been a major life change. We've also had so much fun and Divine love flowing. Life is good!
I got a text from an unknown number, "next Friday ok for a visit?", I wracked my brain, trying to remember which kid has a visit, and why on a Friday. And then it dawned on me that it was my IV nurse, scheduling a home visit to flush my medi-port. My life is weird!! But God has given us so much grace to maneuver this transition. That song Lord, I need You...every hour I need You often runs through my head. Not a day without you, God.