So after the second day of our introductions we were very excited to get back to continue meeting our children. Thankfully the next day arrived much quicker that we thought, and both S and I slept better that we had expected. Not sure if it was all the nervous energy that we had used in the first day, but we both plopped off to sleep ….with a smile on our face. One down and hopefully the next 18 years to go!
On the second day we headed off, this time to arrive only 15 mins early (we were learning). We hung around for a few minutes before we headed in and although the signs from yesterday had gone, we remembered the way up the drive 🙂
Again we were greeted by 2 sets of gorgeous sparkly eyes at the door. They seemed to be excited to see us, so I think we must have done something right the previous day (phew). Today we were scheduled to spend 3 hours playing various activities with the kids, as well as watching them have snack time – it sounded quite scary when arranging the schedule, but after the first day, we felt we would be able to handle 3 hours -especially as the foster mum would still be there. We were lucky that the foster family had a lot of ‘go to activities’ that they could use, so we spent the morning playing with the ‘Frozen’ characters (with a few trucks), before moving onto some painting, then sand play – it seemed like she had a new game / activity ready each 30 mins. It was all very efficient and a little intimidating – would we need to have quite such a structured play?? do we have enough stuff?? are we going to need to be actively playing 24 hours a day?? where on earth do you keep all this stuff?????
MY TIP – don’t try to replicate everything, and don’t stress yourself too much – you will find your balance soon enough, and remember they are PROFESSIONALS and have done this for years.
As we were being given a little time with the kids ‘alone’ it was a good opportunity for us to get to understand the children and see how they reacted to us. The older child was still quite nervous, but certainly wanted to please, the younger one smiled a lot but did not like the word ‘no’ (sound familiar. lol) and would have the cutest strops (he would lie on the ground and pretend to be asleep). A quiet and relaxed strop for us all :-).
MY TIP – Ask what sets them off, if this is ‘normal’ and how best to react, yeah, you may think you sound dumb but who cares – ultimately it is good to know. The foster family have been with them a while and will be able to offer advice.
The 3 hours flew by and the most stressful thing was the tea making. We had been told to make ourselves at home, but with everything going on, it does feel we were imposing. Hopefully tomorrow, I would feel brave enough to make our cups of tea. We were also unsure of how much we should help the foster parent with tidying and clearing up – but she told us in no uncertain terms – leave it to them, we were there to see the kids…. told you she was great 🙂
The time really flew by and before we knew it was time to leave… however before could head back to the hotel, we had a special brucie bonus (if you are too young to know what this is, ask you parents). Our boy had a speech and language therapy session in the afternoon, and we had been asked if we wanted to attend – YES PLEASE.
MY TIP – If you get the opportunity to see more interactions – take them.
We headed off to find some lunch and something to do to fill the hours between the sessions. (Pizza express it was as they open early). We had taken note of lots of the things in the foster house and how our kids interacted and realised that, while we had ‘prepared’ the house and had lots of toys and activities, we were missing some things that they seemed to like. Therefore we decided that the best thing would to be go shopping. For essentials of course…. 🙂
MY TIP – Sign up for Amazon Prime (or another shopping site) if you can. Let’s you get those essentials quickly…..
So after a filling lunch and a car filling shopping experience (we bought a small table for crafts lol), we duly arrived on time (hurrah) at the council centre and met the foster mum and our boy in the car park – he recognized us – yippeee. We followed them into the room and were met with the therapist who went through a number of games and exercises explaining how he was getting on and what the activities did. We were a little surprised that there was very little speech involved, but we were told that this was normal, as it was partly the interaction of the games that they were developing.
We left feeling quite proud of our boy and headed back to our hotel, to anticipate
~ the next day, when we would take them out to the park……..Ooooooooooooo