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Monday’s Fostering Blog

There are some days I just know aren’t going to go so well. I can pick up from our foster daughter Alice within seconds of getting her out of bed what kind of mood she is in and how the day will go. It’s not that I’m a pessimist, rather I am a realist, and after nearly five years I just know how it is going to go. No matter what you do or how hard you try, sometimes there is just no way of getting her out of her mood. And despite this knowledge, I still keep trying! It can be tough on the rest of the family when that kind of atmosphere is created. It is also tough on me. I know that the rest of the family expect mum to keep it together, but sometimes I find it tough too!

I have been trying to find ways of keeping positive and having a different perspective on things. I read one of those inspirational posters this week while I was out. It was an excerpt found on the wall in the office of Mother Theresa. These are the sentences that stood out to me – “People are often unreasonable, irrational and self centred – forgive them anyway. The good you do today will often be forgotten – Do good anyway. Give the best you have and it will never be enough – Give your best anyway.”

I felt very challenged. I know that often I do things and feel frustrated when no-one notices, I go the extra mile and I am not thanked, I put others first and they take it for granted. I feel challenged because I know I should not do these things for thanks and gratitude. I know from all the foster training we have done, it is common for children in care to not be thankful or grateful. I know this to be true. And even after five years there are days when I wonder if we are making any difference at all.

The truth is though, we are making a massive difference to Alice. We often cannot see it ourselves, but we know by giving her a loving, stable home with consistent boundaries, she will be making progress. We often have to remind ourselves that we didn’t start fostering for the praise of others. We did it to make a difference and that is what we need to focus on because that is exactly what we are doing.

A Less Ordinary Family Foster Care Blog