Full Time Job to Freelancing & Fostering
Just in the past few months a LOT has changed. As many of my friends and family know, Frank and I became licensed Foster Parents this past December! With that in mind, and wanting to have more flexibility with my schedule (and time to be a Foster Momma), I left my full time job at James River Church to pursue freelance work as a filmmaker/cinematographer/editor. It's been a complete 180 from where we were just a few months back.
February 6th was my first day as a full time freelancer, and February 8th we told our Licensing Case Manager (LCM) to put us on the openings list for fostering! See the picture -->
We've had a lot of questions regarding Foster Care, so I want to take a moment to address some FAQ's that might help explain the situation. :)
FOSTER CARE FAQ's
When are you going to get kids? We are currently on the openings list, so we could get a phone call at any moment! When Children's Division gets kids in Foster Care, they will look at the openings list and start calling people that are open to take in kids. They want to place kids immediately, so that means they could be calling us in the middle of the night; and often times, if we say yes, the process of placing the kids is pretty quick.
Do you know anything about the kid(s) you're going to get? In short, no. We can ask to take kids in a certain age range, and we can even be as specific to say what gender and race we accept. But until we get a call and they explain the situation and tell us about the kid(s) they have, we won't know anything.
What ages are you accepting? We are on the list for 1 child from 0-2 years (any race and gender), and said we'll possibly take a sibling. We want to be open to taking in siblings because they have a hard time placing sibling groups, but we're also sensitive to the fact that we don't have any parenting experience and want to start off "easy." (Although we know it's not going to be "easy"!) We also said we can take in kids that are Spanish-speaking, since we speak Spanish, too. ;)
Do you know how long it'll take? No idea! We have friends that have gotten placements within a few weeks of being licensed, and lots of friends that haven't gotten any calls (us included.) We just met with our LCM yesterday and she said that they haven't had many kids come into care this past month- which is GOOD! So we'll just wait and see what happens.
How long will you have them? No idea! Haha, many things about Foster Care are up in the air. During our Foster Care classes, we were told that the average length of time they're in care is 18 months. So we'll go into it with that in mind, but also realizing they could be with us for just a few days.
Are you taking in kids to adopt them? When kids come into care, we won't know if they'll end up becoming adoptable or not. And although we hope to adopt someday (both through foster care and international adoption) we aren't going into this with the goal of adoption. Our goal is to provide a safe place for these kiddos, to provide for their needs and help them heal for as long as they're with us. If it's possible for them to be safely reunited with their families, we want to be behind that 100%. But if the child's case comes to the conclusion that they should be adopted, we are open to that possibility and excited about it!
I hope that helps shed some light, and answers some questions you might have for us. If you have any other questions, feel free to comment on the post or send me a message! I'm happy to answer any questions, although I'll admit up front that I'm no expert, and I haven't actually been a Foster Mom yet, so most of my knowledge is from the classes and friends. :D
Since I want to keep this post fairly short, I'll talk more about freelancing and my heart/passion behind that in my next post.
I'll leave you with something visual, because that's what I would want. :D ReMoved is a film by Nathanael Matanick about the story of a girl in Foster Care. So beautifully done, and what an impact it has had. If you haven't seen it, you NEED to!