At some point after Blue arrived at our church and began to grow on me, there was a small fleeting voice that said “Maybe Blue is the one.” I entertained the thought for a moment, but never said anything to Racer. The thought came again, a few months later, but again I did nothing. The thought came again, I shared with Racer “what if…” and he just looked at me a bit strange. All the while, I was still teaching, learning about and listening to Blue. I have some training in trauma counseling and could see how she was ignoring her past, yet wanting for a better future. She wanted a family.
When the Foster’s took in a teen mom with a toddler, Blue was not happy. She decided she didn’t like small children and looked forward to her time away from “it.” She’d never been around really small children, so didn’t know what to do or how to interact. I would just tease her and ask if she wanted to hold Gorilla. Gorilla even accompanied me on some youth ministry events.
At some point in early March 2009, Blue learned that she would have to move out of the Foster’s home. Again, Blue was NOT happy. This place she had happened upon, the Foster’s, our church, her school, had somehow become home to her. She did not want to move. The reasons why the move was planned are not quite clear. Maybe she made a comment to her caseworker about not wanting to be with the Foster’s anymore (because of the baby). Maybe she had grown and learned and been “counseled” and didn’t need the higher level of care anymore and a regular level home couldn’t be found in our area. Maybe state budget cuts necessitated some kids be moved to homes that had a lesser rate of reimbursement. Whatever the case, Blue would be moving at the end of the school year.
When I learned this information, my gut wrenched. I felt like I was going to throw up and it was all I could do to not cry. I told Racer. I cried and told him about the multiple thoughts I’d had over the last several months. I told him about my stomach. I asked him to pray. Within the next couple of days, Blue and I left to go on a youth retreat with a few others. I asked Racer to pray during this time – pray for clarity, wisdom and direction. I would be doing the same.
On the retreat, God was very clear to me. I saw Blue cry for the first time. She opened up even more about her life, her feelings about our community and her heart’s desire to find a family. I asked other youth ministers at the retreat to pray for me, my family and for Blue. They did. It was beautiful. I cried. Blue cried.
When I got home from the retreat, Racer and I knew, without a doubt, what we were supposed to do. We were supposed to adopt Blue. We were to be the family that her heart longed for. She was to be the child that we were to love and add into our crazy, already chaotic life. We knew God was knitting together a beautiful tapestry, one that we didn’t understand, Blue certainly didn’t have a clue about and one that is still being put together.
To be continued…