In September, we welcomed David and Jordan. Introductions were quickly followed by trampoline jumping, wrestling and general merriment.
While we enjoyed the fun and games, Jonathan and I also knew they would soon give way.
Like many kids, these precious kids came into foster care because of trauma. Processing that trauma away from mom and dad brings more trauma. And then moving from one loving foster home to ours, adds even more.
These little ones are forced to work through pain and problems most adults don’t face. In an unfamiliar place with unfamiliar people.
They could only ignore the reality of all that was happening for so long.
And so 48 hours later, it started to surface.
David squirming and struggling to get comfortable in his own skin. All his emotions fighting inside his body.
Jordan shadow boxing with real punches until tears won out. Anxiety finally defeating anger.
As we tried to calm these hurting souls, we felt lost. We looked at each other searching for words or ways to help. I found myself repeating, “You’re okay.” Trying to encourage them that they were safe and loved here. That it was alright to have big feelings.
Then my eyes met Jonathan’s. “But it’s not okay,” he mouthed. It was a reminder that no matter what we do, we can’t make things okay for these boys. We can’t make it right. It’s not okay to have suffered trauma. It’s not okay to have to celebrate Christmas with strangers.
It’s not okay. And sometimes, acknowledging that is the best we can do.