• Kristen Murphy

Silence of a Foster Mom

Updated: Mar 1, 2020

When I moved my blog over to this new platform, I thought that having everything in one place would help. That somehow, having my business and the blog in the same place would help me to dedicate more time and energy here. You know, because all of my thoughts would be in one place. Looking at the quantity of posts, or lack there of, I can see that I was wrong. I have been trying to figure out why I have been so distant from something that I love so much. I think I have it figured out.

I haven't lost my voice. I haven't run out of things to say. My problem is simply that my story is no longer simply my own. As a lifestyle and/or mommy blogger, we share so much about our families. We give you glimpses into our life in hopes that you, our readers, can relate and maybe even gain something from what is on your screen. A blog like mine should be a place where other moms, other women, other people can come and be uplifted and encouraged... or simply not feel so alone. When my family consisted of my husband and biological children, I could share endlessly about our days. About our life. Recipes, DIY, Life, Loss. I was an open book. Then came foster care. Our story and narrative expanded. It began to include advocacy and a bleeding heart for children who were not my own.

We welcomed Nixon into our home and my posts had to become more vague. His identity needed to be hidden

until he was adopted

. His story protected. I again expanded our story to include adoption and autism and special needs life. Hoping to share a glimmer of hope to those of you on the forefronts. Doing this while still keeping his story his own was hard but doable.

When our home opened again though, it was different. Nixon's story had adoption written in it for so long. From early on, we knew he would be our son forever. His first parents were gone and unfortunately unable to be found to be a part of our lives for now. Our new little ones though? They would come and go. 9 months here, 2 weeks there...and so on. Years would be spent loving on babies. Loving on families and helping them to become whole again.

How do you tell a story that is only partially yours? How do you tell your story with so many pieces missing? Years full of joy and tears that cannot be shared. Even if just being told from my end, the part that directly effected the course of our family, I would be giving details of cases. Which isn't only insensitive but illegal as well. Leaving those babies out. Leaving our experience out. It just didn't feel authentic. Here we are now. A house full. No new kiddos coming in. Heading towards adoption of our last two babies. Sharing still doesn't seem right. This time we have a beautiful family that is on the other end. They are not gone. They did not disappear. We have the privilege of having this amazing growing bonus family. How could I share our story and leave them out?

Do I not tell you all about the family we gained when we sent our first placement after Nixon home to her biological Aunt and Uncle (now her mom and dad)? The trips spent to their home and their trips to ours. The adoption we got to attend and the fact that they gave her my name. That we not only got to love on her for all those months but for the rest of her life as Nina and Nino? I can't.

How do I leave out the beautiful baby girl who gets to be with her Grandma while we pray for her Daddy to get better? The updates that we get and the hopes of visits soon. That is our story, a piece of our hearts and our ever growing family.

Do I ignore the siblings of our soon to be adopted babies here? Do I not mention their names or how much fun we have when we get to bring them all together and let them be normal siblings, even just for a little while? What about their adoptive family, who are in turn our adopted family? They belong in our stories. And our kiddos first parents. What about them? We are forever joined in a heartbreakingly beautiful way. We share children. You do not leave that out. You do not share it either. It is this place of pain and joy. It is a place of pride but secrecy. How do I show a gorgeous baby boy without telling you that he gets those big bright eyes from his first mommy? I guess, the same way Nixon smiles and tells you that his stunning blue eyes are from his "Daddy A_____". It's just such a challenging place to navigate. All of this sounds like I want to end this blog but that is the furthest from the truth. I want to invite you all back into our life. The one filled with projects and yummy food. The life of chaos and coffee. The one where we homeschool, tackle special needs battles and fight for the kids who are lost in a broken system. We want you here with us. Maybe it always seemed like you were getting tips but y'all you bring the cheers and support and courage this mama needs.

I guess what I am trying to say is that the life of a foster mom is lonely because it is outlined by silence. The struggles, the battles we fight daily for our little ones to get everything they need and want, they are private. Don't worry about us. We have a support group. We share with other families in the trenches. We, I, will find a way to balance the silence with lots of words again. I am trying to find my way through it all. I will be here though and I would love it if you'd encourage me to hop on here every now and then. To share. Even if it is something seemingly trivial, like

how we get our kids to eat a meal that they don't really like

or something more significant like

being the struggling mom

The posts may be few and far between but I am really going to try to figure out how to share without oversharing or leaving our real life out. The best way to know when I actually post is to scroll to the bottom of this page and subscribe.

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