I was so not ready for it, yet, I have survived the six month mark!
I can hear many of you say “what do you mean “not ready”? You had been trying to get pregnant for years”. Yes. That is true! However, ready to potentially get pregnant and then become a mom AND ready to have a 13 month old in your life, within a 6 week timeframe, and become his foster mom, while also accepting social workers and biological parents into your family – well those are two completely different kinds of ready… So ya… I was maybe not fully ready, but I’ve survived! And so has baby!!! Isn’t that what’s most important! 🙂
You were all right: it is unbelievable how time seems slow when you are in the moment, but how fast time flies when you look at the bigger picture. I feel like our munchkin, our little Timbits, has been with us forever! We’ve been through so much together already; how can it only be six months?!
“How has it been?” First off, thank you for checking in. I would have never imagined so many of you curious to know where I’ve been or how the baby has been doing!
Secondly, well… Where to start?
Do I vent about the tough parts, like waking up at night because of night terrors, then teething and then to care for a child that was ill for over a month (and I thought that man-colds were bad)?! The multiple half-day trainings that we have to take in order to stay a foster home (like how to properly wear PPE), the COVID rules we have to comply with because we are considered part of the CIUSS (who else has logs of everyone who visits their home!), the red tape and paperwork… Or do I share the beautiful moments, like our little one dancing to my (horrible) singing, loving my cooking and waving hello to me with the biggest heart-melting grin when I pick him up from daycare? The easiness of getting that daycare placement or a doctor’s appointment because he is a foster kid. Do I show my dark circles or do I wear my rose coloured glasses?!
I will be the first to admit that our foster son is a ray of sunshine. He is such a happy-go-lucky child with a huge personality. He loves to make others smile and his laugh is adorable. He is ticklish, charming and curious. He enjoys imitating Alex, knowing how proud that makes him, which developed his musical skills quite quickly, as well as his silly side (like shushing when he asks Alex for a cookie behind my back)! He is super social, loves trying new things and still sleeps about 10 hours a night! We’ve been lucky. The pairing in this case was incredible and little one is thriving. We are truly enjoying all the firsts that we are getting to experience.
Except TEETHING!! Seriously… I went to google it, but then decided that I didn’t want to know how many teeth he is supposed to have. I prefer being ignorant by believing that we were almost through this stage of life but, of course, geeky Alex had to bless me with the fact that a child’s last teeth grow around 25 months!!! That’s still six months away!!!
Plus, don’t get me wrong… this child can be a handful!!!!!!!!!! Especially in this I-cry-whenever-I-don’t-get-what-I-want stage… His I-refuse-to-eat-if-I-am-not-holding-the-fork mood that seems to coincide with his it’s-so-much-fun-to-throw-food-everywhere tantrums. His pay-attention-to-me-I-don’t-care-that-you-are-cooking-or-ironing-or-doing-something-that-grown-ups-think-is-important moments. His no-one-is-looking-so-I-can-pull-the-dog’s-ears-or-penis mischiefs… Ayayaille!!
The first months were also a tad difficult as baby hadn’t bonded with us yet, nor did he really like to hug or cuddle… At times, I felt like a babysitter more than a mom. However, as mentioned in my first Mom Log, Alex and I make a great team. We were patient. We showed our Timbits consistency and love. We cuddled and laughed and kissed, which made him want to be part of the sweet moments too. He saw that we were there for him everyday, that we sent him off with a smile to his weekly visit with his biological parents, that we could protect him when he had night terrors and that we simply enjoyed him, his big personality and his big emotions. So little by little, his guard fell and we became more than just two other adults in his life. Little by little, our love for him grew, and we too had to put our guards down, accept the uncertainty and sometimes uneasiness of being a foster parent, and just simply be a family.
And I have to say, I love our family dynamic! Alex and I, as parents, complement each other beautifully. Alex always knows how to make Timbits laugh when he is crying, but I am the one who actually understands why he is crying! Alex is the one he calls out for first thing in the morning, but I am the voice and touch he needs after awaking from a nightmare. Alex teaches him how to jump, but I register him to circus school. Alex teaches him how to brush his teeth, but I am the one who buys 3 toothbrushes knowing that we’ll lose two in a week! Alex speaks to him in French, I speak to him in English, we both teach him sign language and we are all learning Inuktitut. It’s fluid. It’s easy. It’s something that came surprisingly naturally.
It didn’t come without sacrifices though. The biggest one was re-homing Alex’s dog… Timbits came into our lives too quick for jealous and very excitable Baxter… After multiple trainings, Alex realized that this environment was not fun for Baxter and made the very difficult decision to find him a childless family. It was all so hard, but it was the right thing to do. I am sure there will be more down the road… I’ve put so much into renovating this old house, but with the toys and childproofing, Alex is starting to convince me that a bigger place on the South Shore may be worth looking into… Alex’s little sports car may be swapped for one with a bigger trunk. I am saying no to trips and opportunities in order to be home with baby, especially in this first year… We are nixing the Christmas tree and instead buying a felt one that lights up and that baby can decorate differently every day without ruining it (this child is like a cat – attracted to everything that shines and needs to walk away with anything he can touch!). Parties with friends have become brunches. Romantic getaways are less about relaxing at the spa and more about splashing in a pool, less about talking all evening and more about reading quietly to not wake the baby, less about big romance and more about little moments.
It’s all worth it though!
I would not say that our lives revolve around our foster son, but this new constellation of happiness definitely pulls our heart in his direction. He is the sun and we, the planets! Alex is telling me to type: “this NEWtron is the atom of my eyes”. Yep! He’s perfected the dad joke… and I have perfected laughing along!
So that’s that! We’ve survived the first six months by finding balance in the madness and simplicity of it all. Does that even answer your one question?
Let me try that again!
“How are you doing?”
We are just fine! Thanks for asking!
TO BE CONTINUED