It has been a very emotional week. After 2 1/2 years we had our final permanency hearing for our 3 yr old. It was a long morning in court. There was talk of postponing again (already postponed 3 times) due to varying reasons. Finally we began to move forward on things. TPR was ordered on Birth Mom (she didn't show up) and after several hours, "Dad" decided to voluntarily terminate his parental rights. After a couple of recesses and presentation of evidence by both sides, "Grandma" came in to court grabbed me and started crying. She said "He is going to do it". I was assuming she meant voluntarily sign over his rights.
Even knowing that the family is not capable of caring for this little guy, it is still very hard to walk through this journey with them. They do care for him and this was a very emotional time. I cried for the remainder of the court session; cried from relief that things where almost over, cried from what I thought the birth family was going through, cried because I am so emotionally drained from this journey.
I have never sat in on a Termination hearing. I do not envy anyone involved in these cases. It is such a gut wrenching decision. A friend who is a judge once told me, Issuing a TPR is the closest thing to the death penalty that he knows of. You are effectively putting to death a parent child relationship.
We plan on maintaining contact with the family. There have already been several teary phone calls.
I get to sit in on another TPR this week. I am not sure why this is all coming at the same time. I know God has a plan. This week for some reason, He gave me the scripture in Genesis 32 where Jacob wrestles with the Lord in the night. He then took me to Genesis 33 where Esau meets Jacob and asks him, "Who are these with you". Jacob replies that with him are "the children God has graciously given me."
I feel many times as if we have wrestled in prayer for these children. It has been a long journey (we have been foster parents for over 7 years). We didn't "plan" on having this many children at this time in our life. But I know "These are the children God has graciously given us."
Now, I am praying for His wisdom on how to continue on this journey and raise up "His" children to serve Him.