Thursday, April 17, 2008
Fostering: Update on Baby Bug
I've been meaning to update you all on Baby Bug's frustrating situation that I blogged about here and here but I needed some time to cool off and see how things played out. I'm ready now. And while I'm at it, I'll update you on Boo and Snuggle Bug as well, but in separate posts in the very near future. This post will be devoted to Baby Bug.

The short of it...CPS got their way. They are no longer providing any transportation for Baby Bug and Baby Bug was enrolled in a nearby daycare this past Monday. I'm less than thrilled!

Now, for the details (fair warning, this is going to be a long post!).

I will give Baby Bug's CPS worker (and her supervisor) credit for being quite clever. Not only did she successfully maneuver out of transporting entirely for this case, but she also presented the daycare situation to Oronzo in such a way that he couldn't help but be swayed to her way of thinking! I was at work the morning she came to discuss it with him.

Here's how things now work:

1) Baby Bug is enrolled in a nearby daycare. CPS is picking up the tab, entirely. We're not sure if they have her enrolled PT or FT but since we're not paying I guess it doesn't matter.

2) Three days a week, Oronzo (or myself) is responsible for dropping Baby Bug off at daycare by no later than 9 AM. The daycare opens at 7:30 AM so in theory we could drop her off as early as 7:30 AM. That will happen over my dead body. She will arrive at around 8:45 AM-8:55 AM.

3) On those three scheduled days, Baby Bug's parents are responsible for picking Baby Bug up at the daycare no later than 9 AM and they must have her returned to the daycare by 4:30 PM. Oronzo or I have until 6 PM to pick Baby Bug up from daycare. Again, I can assure you she will not be languishing in daycare until 6 PM.

4) I demanded some guidelines of my own in this less than desirable situation. First, I informed the CPS worker that I would be calling the daycare center each morning at 10 AM to make sure that Baby Bug had been picked up by her parents, so that she wouldn't be sitting in there all day, unbeknownst to us if her parents didn't show up. If they hadn't arrived by 10 AM, I told the CPS worker that Oronzo or I would go pick her back up and it was to be understood that her parents had then forfeited their entire day's visit. Second, if Baby Bug's parents were going to be late in dropping her back off at the specified 4:30 PM time, I expected them to call and let the daycare center know so that we could be warned. I made it clear to the CPS worker that if Baby Bug was not there when we arrived to pick her up and her parents hadn't called the daycare center, then we were going to call the CPS hotline, which involves the police going out to her parent's house to retrieve Baby Bug. Baby Bug's parents haven't done anything thus far to lead me to believe that we'd have any problems but I wanted it to be made very clear that if problems began there would be consequences and I needed to make sure that CPS would back me up. I needed to do my best to look after Baby Bug's interests since it seemed as though no one else was doing so! The CPS worker agreed to my stipulations and conveyed them in a letter to the parents.

Although I hate the idea of Baby Bug in daycare, her parents seem to hate it as much as I do and so far this week she's not been in daycare for more than 30 minutes each day! Yes, our tax payer's dollars are being wasted in such a way as this, since CPS (the State) is picking up the daycare tab. It's a joke, really!

We started this on Monday. Oronzo arrived at the daycare with Baby Bug at 8:45 AM and found Baby Bug's mom already there. Not only that, she had been there for an hour waiting! She was so nervous about the chance of being late and so excited at the thought of being allowed to have an all-day visit with her daughter for the first time in four months, that she left their house really early and got to the daycare an hour before Oronzo arrived! What a way to start things off on the right foot. My admiration for Baby Bug's mom increased even more that day! Monday afternoon, she had Baby Bug back at 4:30 PM on the dot and I picked her up on my way home from work at 5 PM. Baby Bug's mom arrived early the next two mornings as well and has been very punctual in returning her.

I feel bad that her parents have been left holding the bag as far as transporting for visits, especially since they have to travel across town, but they don't seem to mind one bit. They are just thrilled to have more time with their daughter.

Baby Bug's visitation with her parents is going to be increasing steadily over time. If this three days per week schedule goes well, after a while it'll be increased to four days, then five. Eventually they'll get some overnight visits and then weekend visits. The ultimate goal, of course, is reunification and her return home to her parents on a full-time basis.

I have such mixed feelings about all of this. On one hand, I'm happy that her parents are getting more time with their daughter and I'm very hopeful that they will continue to do well and do what they have to do to get her back. I really do think this is a good thing.

On the other hand, the more time she spends with her parents, the less time she spends with us. So far, the increased visitation doesn't really cut into my time with Baby Bug because it's mainly while I'm at work. But it won't be long until I see less and less of Baby Bug. I know this case has absolutely nothing to do with me but it's going to be emotionally hard for me to let go of Baby Bug, little by little.

I love this child as if she were my own, knowing full well that she's not. I "know" her and she knows me. Her face lights up like a Christmas tree anytime she hears my voice or sees me walk into a room. I know what each of her cries mean and how to comfort her. I know exactly how to hold her when she's over-tired and needs to get to sleep or if her tummy is hurting her. I love buying her cute little outfits and making her hair bows/clips to match! I love holding her close, rocking her, and surrounding her in song and prayer. I love caring for her and keeping her safe.

Baby Bug's next court date isn't until mid-July and even then it's uncertain as to whether or not the judge will consider Baby Bug's parents ready to get her back but by then she will have been with us for 8 months and I think, if they continue to do so well, her parents will have a very good shot at getting her back at that point in time.

So, our time with Baby Bug is dwindling. My heart aches at the thought of it. But, while she's still with us, I will be the squeaky wheel advocating for her best interests. Obviously I'm not going to win every battle, but I won't go quietly. She deserves the very best and I intend to do everything in my power to see to that while I am able.

That's all for now. I'll update you all on Boo and then Snuggle Bug very soon, so stop back again. As always, your prayers and your support are much appreciated!

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6:30 AM

At 5:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

First, of all you so elequently put your feelings on baby bug that it brought tears to my eyes. We will begin praying for both you and Oronzos heart so that when the time comes though you will be sad you wont ache.

Secondly, I am so glad that you put your foot down regarding the stipulations and that the state was willing to side with you. Moreover I am tickled pink that the parents are doing what they need to be doing and consistently showing this! What a blessing that only the Lord can provide!!!

Lastly, can I just say I am speechless SPEECHLESS that the state is willing to waste that much money on paying for daycare of an infant that isn't really even there! It seems the transportation would be much more cost efficient, but who am I? Just a penny pinchin' momma.

I love the pictures you included, so precious!

At 5:35 AM, Blogger GeonHui's Bakery said...

I'm fascinated by your stories and this one almost brought me to tears. My husband and I have a big heart for foster care and adoption, yet we have lots of questions that need to be answered first. Thanks for the glimpses into your life!

At 7:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well with our fostering/adoption journey just beginning, you know how much I NEED to hear the details of stories like this! Bless you for being her advocate - that is why God called you to this mission! Someone needs to be there for the babies! A voice for the voiceless!

Hugs and prayers!

At 7:59 AM, Blogger Michelle said...

what a frustrating situation! I'm glad to hear her parents don't want her in day care any more than you do! It does seem silly paying for day care when she's not even there!

Sounds like she's going to be with you a lot longer than originally thought...didn't you think she might be going back Mar/Apr time frame?

I feel for you after having her for so many months; it would be hard for me not to become attached either.

At 8:52 AM, Blogger Lindsay said...

Oh, so frustrating!

She is SUCH a cutie!! Oh, my!

Hey, no trouble on the missed message! I will just wait till may, I got distracted and then loaned that book to a friend anyway.

I got Hope's Boy in the mail today. I'm so excited!! Can't wait to jump right in. I will PIF as soon as I'm done.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger Jacquie said...

How fortunate Baby Bug is to have found a home in your house! Lucky little girl, who's adorable btw.

I hope her parents keep making the effort that they have shown.

The whole daycare things sounds so crazy, definately a waste of money. I guess CPS justifies it to themselves somehow??

At 3:36 PM, Blogger Barb said...

So frustrating for you, on so many levels...but it is encouraging that her parents aren't any more willing to let her languish in daycare than you are. That's a very encouraging sign.

I'm sorry for the feelings you're going through as your time with her is less and less.

At 6:13 PM, Blogger Milk Mama said...

I'm so sorry to hear of it. :( Will CPS have you return Baby Bug to her birth parents? Do you know when? She is a beautiful little girl! She is blessed to have a mommy like you for her first months of her life!

At 9:40 AM, Blogger Ms. Kathleen said...

Wow! That is awesome about Baby Bug's Mom being so punctual and wanting to spend time with her daughter.

I can understand how hard it is for you... My ♥ breaks for you but what a good strong heart you have.

As for CPS paying for daycare for a child who is not there... Crazy and also how greedy is the daycare to charge for time the baby is not there? You are so right...this is nuts.

Stand Strong!! Keeping you in my prayers! Hugs!

At 7:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So, is the state paying the daycare tuition for the baby on the waiting list who can't get into that daycare because Baby Bug is taking up a spot -- since there are always waiting lists? How stupid with the daycare thing. At least it sounds, though, like almost everyone hasa Baby Bug's best interests at heart.

At 10:41 PM, Blogger Stacy said...

Oh, my heart.

I am aching for you about your time with Baby Bug dwindling. 8 months of bonding with this sweet girl. Wow.

Praying for you!



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Name: Overwhelmed

My complete profile

It wasn't supposed to work this way...Parts 1 through 10

(the story of the private, domestic adoption of our son)

(Part 1)
(Part 2)
(Part 3)
(Part 4)
(Part 5)
(Part 6)
(Part 7)
(Part 8)
(Part 9)
(Part 10- Adoption Finalization)

Fostering isn't for the faint of heart!

(our journey to adopt again through foster-to-adopt, the good, the bad, & everything in between)

Adoption #2- considering the State
More Adoption #2 thoughts
Adoption #2- Back to considering the State
Adoption #2- The Paperwork (Round 1)
Adoption #2- The Paperwork (Round 2)
Family Foster Home Licensing Prep Checklist
Adoption #2- Long overdue update
PS-MAPP class homework assignment
Our preliminary home inspection went well!
Adoption #2: Licensing update
Adoption #2- Foster Facts
Adoption #2: I love it when things go my way!
Adoption #2- The home inspection
Adoption #2- We failed our home inspection!
Adoption #2- We passed the follow-up home inspection!
Adoption #2- Still waiting
Adoption #2- We're getting closer
Adoption #2- An update & a lead
Adoption #2- The lead that didn't pan out.
Adoption #2- We're licensed!
Adoption #2- We have a tiny baby here!
Adoption #2- Update on this precious little girl.
Adoption #2- Quick update on Baby Bug
Adoption #2- Baby Bug is staying longer!
Adoption #2- Baby Bug is growing!
Adoption #2- Overdue update on Baby Bug
Adoption #2- The latest on Baby Bug
Adoption #2- Shopping spree for Baby Bug
Being a Foster Parent Does Not Make Me A Saint
Adoption #2- Another Placement Call!
Adoption #2- Placement Meeting- UPDATED!
Adoption #2- We have Boo at our home!
Adoption #2- Meeting Boo
Adoption #2- I'm angry on Boo's behalf!
Adoption #2- A Birthday Party for Boo
Adjusting to three 3 and under!
Stressful moments in fostering.
Adoption #2- Update on our foster daughters
CPS Workers Jerking Our Chain!
It's getting much worse!
Fostering: Update on Baby Bug
Fostering: Update on Boo
The effects of fostering on Snuggle Bug
The time is drawing near to let go of Baby Bug.
Good conversation with Baby Bug's dad.
Boo has a Permanency hearing coming soon!
My heart is breaking!
Bittersweet news about Baby Bug.
Next Friday is going to be tough.
Packing up Baby Bug's belongings
It's done- Baby Bug is gone.
Working on finding peace, one day at a time.
Referral to the Early Intervention Program
Baby Bug update
Home Inspection for re-licensing
Parole granted for Boo's bio mom
Baby Bug is turning 1 year old soon.
Day 2 of Boo's permanency hearing
A prayer answered today!
Attending Baby Bug's 1st birthday party
Foster news
Good news for Boo's case
Boo's bio family visits
Termination Trial date set!
A new caseworker for Boo
I've been asked to testify in court.
Court hearing for "John Doe"
Contested termination trial begins tomorrow afternoon
Boo's adoption has been finalized!

WFMW: Coffee Filter Butterflies
BloggedIn Highlight
Favorite Ingredients Friday (Creamy Parmesan Risotto)
It's not getting any better! It's getting much wo...
CPS Workers Jerking Our Chain!
Favorite Ingredients Friday (Desserts Edition)
Adoption #2- Update on the girls
WFMW: Greatest Hits Edition
April Pay It Forward Book Exchange- 11 books up fo...
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