Foster parents who build inspiration and hope for foster children/youth, truly and honestly make a phenomenal positive impact, not only their futures but their souls as well. Some foster parents are at a disadvantage and need all the love and support they deserve for taking a huge role to unconditionally love and guid someone else’s child. The hope I want to bring to foster children and youth is the hope of foster parents who can be loving, nurturing, patient and someone who is on their side, with the proper screening process. I’ve seen it and experienced the unconditional love that should be instilled into our foster care system.
At age five, I entered the Sonoma County Foster Care System due to: my father neglecting me outside of a hotel room, while him and his girlfriend were passed out on the hotel room bed. (This wasn’t the first time he abandoned me) If it wasn’t for the hotel manager for calling law enforcement, after seeing me play outside the motel door with my new Barbie my dad just bought me to keep me busy, who knows what could have happened to me outside without supervision. Police vehicles showed up outside our hotel room, witnessing law enforcement pouring water over my father and his girlfriends face. Waking them up, they resist being arrested while in and out of their heavily induced intoxication. When my father and his girlfriend were being taken into police custody, I was leaving in the back of a police car, at age six. What was going through my mind? I was scared and I had the mentallity of: “Did something wrong?” I thought I was going to jail. Unfortunately, I have no recollection of any police officers or CPS workers to ease my startled mind. Instead, I felt like I was being interrogated by the pressure of feeling the need to answer his question after question instead of comforting me in an event that shifted the whole way I looked at life at age five.
Another specific example of how my foster family impacted my time living with them, they made it as special as they possibily could. They would continue to make me feel adequate meaning of living. That’s how much of a POSITVE influence my foster parents left me with. I love them so much for instilling the empathy and compassion they had not only for me but for ever child and youth that lived in their home. I’m truly fortunate to have experienced a foster family who knows the secret to foster parenting: being kind, loving, supportive, quality time, mental stablity with structure and standing up for the voiceless.
Spending approximately six months with my new foster family created hope and inspiration for my future. The Sonoma County foster family I had been placed with treated me with the most unconditional love I’ve ever felt. They were involved with every foster child and youth in their home. For example, the day after my intake entering foster care in Sonoma County California, I turned six years old. My new foster family went and bought a birthday cake to celebrate my birthday. I will never forget how loved and included I felt being part of a family. Feeling the warmest embrace being in their loving and compassionate home helped me feel like being an actual child and not have to feel like I had to constantly be responsible for telling my father how disappointed I was in him when he would often be in and out of incarceration since he was a juvinile in Connecticut.
Having a positive influence experiencing a foster family taking time to show me that the life I was living was not how any child should live. My foster parents from Sonoma County, California made a huge difference in the way I saw the world at age six and continues to make an extreme positive impact for my self being and advocacy. I’m incredibly thankful and will continue to praise ALL loving and caring foster families.
I’m looking forward to sharing more information on how our foster system needs reformed. Thank you to everyone that continues to show love, support and kindness.