We were robbed. Someone jumped through our window and into our home without our permission. They rifled through our belongings. Opened our drawers. Pulled down our bedspreads. And took what they liked.

Then they left.

I can’t presume to know why they did it or what they were thinking when they did. I can barely decipher my own emotions and thoughts. Especially as it all goes and comes and changes so quickly.

One second, fear. As we come home and my foster son runs upstairs, and I look down to see our silver scattered on the floor. Slowly realizing someone else had been here. And might still be.

Next, calm. Walking through the house with the police. My husband and foster son beside me. We are safe. We are ok.

Confusion. What is missing and what isn’t? Did I misplace that external hardrive or was it stolen?

Determination. We’re ok. We can keep going. Go to work. Go to school. Go on.

Fear. We learn more. The burglars are hitting other houses in the neighborhood. With a gun. And suddenly I’m flashingback. My foster son is racing up the stairs without me just like he did that night. But what if they are still there? What if I can’t reach him? What if I can’t protect him?

In so many ways, I can’t. And never could.

Just like every other child we’ve welcomed into our home and hearts.

These children have already felt such traumas. Had the things most precious to them taken. The people most loved, gone.

Often with little more explanation from the state than we were given by the thieves. Rarely a why or whether or when these children might get back to their loved ones.

And yet, as I watch our foster son, I’m in awe. This eleven-year-old seems better at processing it all than I am.

I watch him and learn.

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