Walls and words.

Walls and words.


As a foster mom, I’ve been called a lot of unsavory names. I hesitate to share them, to repeat them. But I also hesitate not to. 5 and 10 year old babies are saying these words. Knowing these words.

We as adults should know too. It’s hard to know though.

Not just the words. But the reality that these little ones hurt so much inside that they want to hurt you. And so they try. With ugly racial slurs and mean spiteful adjectives.

I try not to take them personally. And some are so far from reality that it’s impossible to even take them seriously.

But they are said seriously. With fire in their eyes and many decibels in their voices. And that is taken seriously. That anger. That hurt.

So often though, I focus on separating myself from the words these precious kids use. My precious kids call me. I build walls to block the lies.

I’m not a wh*re. I’m not a motherf*cker. I don’t eat poop.

Important reminders of reality. Of who I am.

These walls protect me. I can listen through them without hearing. I can love through them without expecting in return.

But then. Then there’s something different being said. Truth in a quiet moment. Yes. You can come in.

My often caustic 5 year old foster son is sick. His illness sweetening his sour. And allowing him to see me. To know me. To name me.

A simple act I’ve done a thousand times gets a different response. I hand him crackers and he looks me in the eye.

“You are a good foster mom.”

End stop.

Tomorrow will surely bring more slurs but today. Today I will let those walls down and soak in that truth.

Not just that I’m a good foster mom, but that he knows it. He feels it.

4 Comments

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  1. HerdingChickens

    I hear you. I’ve been there. Once I stopped and thought to myself, “I wear an awful lot of argyle sweater sets for a wh*re! What kind of self-respecting wh*re would wear argyle?!” I’m so glad that you recognize it isn’t personal. I’m so glad that you can hear the good.

  2. Treva Buchanan

    We too face the same slurs, derogatory comments, hurtful actions every day. It takes a family full of love and compassion to love unconditionally. Keep up the amazing work you are doing! Continue to inspire these young ones, you are making a difference!

  3. Evelyn Christensen

    Dearest Liz. Your posts so often bring tears to my eyes and this one was no exception. I’m thankful for the moments of clear vision from your children, and thankful for your willingness to love through it all.

  4. ML Forsythe

    Precious. Holy affirmation. SO glad you can hold on to these moments and let the other go.

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