My story of foster care started when our children were still fairly young. We were a middle income family with a Brady Bunch combination of children. My husband had two, a girl and a boy. I had a daughter as well, and then we had a son. We shared custody of my husband’s children from his first marriage, and I had no problem loving them as my own and always hated to see them go.
One day, I was overwhelmed with the things we had to be thankful for. We had built our home, and it had more than enough space for us. We lived right on the outskirts of a very small town, where it was no challenge to know every resident and most of their pet’s names, and I wanted to give back out of gratefulness for the things that had been provided for us.
My husband was not very involved with the process of going into fostering, but he did not supply resistance, and so I eagerly began the journey of getting the proper training and licensing. Of course, when the day arrived, I asked for younger kids because I was already very accomplished in caring for them. Our oldest daughter was then eleven. The first opportunity to take in an addition to our family turned out to be a 16-year-old teenager with a long history of running away. Ours was the first home she was placed in, and so she had to be as anxious as I was when she arrived. She had rebelled against her family, largely because of the lack of structure. She actually wanted someone who cared enough to help her set boundaries and follow up with love and commitment if she did not comply with them.