Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Weight of Saying "No"

Today, I am a foster mom who is overwhelmed; brought to tears and on my knees in prayer.

I have spit-up on my sweater; I haven't gotten a full night's sleep in 7 months, and I'm holding a crying baby as I type.  But these things aren't the reason for my tears; they do not play a role in my broken heart.

Why the sadness?  Why the heavy heart when all in my life appears to be going so well?

Because two weeks ago I said "no".  No to the phone call asking us if we'd like to adopt two more boys.  Two boys, ready to be part of a forever family.  Two boys, ages 17 months and 7 months.  Two boys who deserve a loving, caring home.  Two boys who need know the security and comfort of a family.  Two boys who need Christ's love poured out to them on a daily basis.

I cannot stop thinking about those boys.  Can't stop praying for them, or wondering if we made the right decision.  If we need to change our decision.

We've prayed so long for God to grow our family through adoption.  And, God has graciously answered our prayers--we have just begun the adoption process for our foster son.  He is 8 months old.

And, as my husband gently pointed out, "LeAnne, that's 3 boys ages one and under.  We would need to buy a new car. We have a small house, and that is a huge undertaking.  I'm not sure you could handle it alone everyday when I'm at work and the older kids are at school."

I know Mike is right.  One thing that is so difficult as a foster parent is the balance of being in continual prayer for whatever God calls you to and flying by the seat of your pants.  Through our various "yes" and "no" responses over the past 3 years, Mike and I have balanced in a way that lets me know God's leading is playing a role in our decisions.

I called our licensing worker today to check on the boys.  After all, it's been 2 whole weeks.  They should have a home now, right?

No.  No home for these two boys.  They will soon go on the Waiting Child list for the state of IL.  I told our licensing worker I had been praying for the boys.

Her response? "PLEASE keep praying.  And if you know of anyone who may want to be a foster parent, PLEASE encourage them to take those steps."

WOW.  It was all I could do to not begin sobbing before the phone call ended.

So, I will continue to pray.  I will become more bold in my response when people make the off-hand comment, "oh, maybe we'll foster when our life is a little more calm".  

I will not stop praying for these boys.

And, I am grateful that while saying "no" to the 2 boys, it caused Mike and I to realize we would not have hesitated in saying "yes" to either one of them.

Maybe God is preparing us for something after all.


  1. LeAnne,
    My name is Samantha and my husband and I are licensed foster parents in Illinois. We would be interested to know more about them or see if we could be considered as a family for them. We are licensed for 4 kids and currently have 2 foster kids with us now but they do have a reunification goal.

    1. Oh, thank you, Samantha! Throughout the past week I've kept in touch with my licensing worker; it sounds like they have found the boys a home! Such an answer to prayer.

    2. Thanks LeAnne for your reply. So glad they found the boys a home. Are you guys licensed with an agency in Peoria? We are with Family Core. I'm glad I found your blog I'm going to add it to the list of ones I read.

      Have a good Sunday!

    3. We are in Peoria too, and through the Center for Youth and Family Solutions. I've heard wonderful things about Family Core. Hope your journey is going well; being foster parents certainly means being ready to flex at any moment. Thanks for reading my blog!