Sunday, October 27, 2013

We've met the boy!

     Almost 2 weeks ago we received a phone call from dss about a boy.  He is 9 and they wanted to know if he was too old for us. We told them we were interested (he is slightly younger than Cheesie) and they set up an appointment to hear his story.  Last Tuesday we went in and they had his entire file there.  It included his history with dss, medical info, school records and a few pictures.  We listened to his history, saw his picture and then were sent home with the rest of the information to discuss it.  We were allowed to call 24 hours later and accept, so they set our first visit up for Saturday.
     Yesterday, Brian and I went without the girls to meet him at a local gym with a rock climbing section.  We gave the boy a choice between batting cages (he likes baseball), rock wall climbing, or the zoo. He chose the destination, and we were thrilled.  We ended up arriving 15 minutes early, and the social worker arrived 15 minutes late..... so Brian and I paced a LOT! The guy at the counter was getting nervous just watching us and asked us if we were okay.  Once we explained the situation he just sat back and giggled at our nervous energy.  As soon as the social worker drove up we ran down the steps, and tried not to mow the kid over.  He was also super nervous, so we introduced ourselves, and got him moving into the building to give him something to do.  Once he had his gear, we walked to the back and the belayer hooked him up. I realized pretty quickly that this boy was related to spiderman.  He ran right up those walls, and when he got stuck he would take a second and look at the wall to figure it out.  He did an excellent job.  At some point I explained to the belayer what we were doing (when the boy was up by the ceiling) and he just melted.  Apparently he has worked with all sorts of kids as well as just started working at our local children's home as a cabin manager. The Boy did a fabulous job, and chatted with us a lot. He spent time answering both of our questions.  At one point he watched a grown man struggle on a route that he just knew he could do, and whispered to me, "Watch this." Then he went to the belayer who hooked him up, and scampered right up that wall.  He felt so proud of himself.

     After the gym we took him to a cupcake place and sat and chatted.  He didn't know what to ask so we told him all about the girls and the dogs.  We talked about family and what we like to do for fun.  At one point his social worker asked if he wanted to see us again and his face lit up and he said, "Yes! They are nice." So we set a time to meet with him today.

     Today's visit involved the girls.  All of us were excited about our trip to the zoo to meet up with him.  My mom and sister decided to meet up with us as well.  His foster mom drove him half way (they live on the other side of town, and she is an absolute angel to drive him to meet us) and we picked him up in a parking lot.  Brian and I went to meet him, and I asked if he was nervous.  "Yes ma'am, I am VERY nervous," he said.  He got right in the big car with them, and just sort of sat quietly.  At the zoo he tended to stick by Brian or I, and we were pleased to discover one of his interests seems to be animals.  I finally have a naturalist kid to hang out with! He pointed out a mockingbird to my mom, and then would periodically give us random facts about animals.  Once he loosened up we saw the "typical boy" type behavior from him - jumping up on curbs and benches to walk on them, and then at one point telling me that Gorilla's eat their own vomit...... great...... and wouldn't you know just as he is telling me that the Gorilla barfs and ....... well you know..... he was right. 
     After the zoo we ran to find him a Halloween costume because his saint of a foster mom is willing to have him come here on Thursday (I"ll meet her half way) and trick or treat. Then it is back to her house for the night.  When our day was over and we drove back to the parking lot to meet up with her he looked a little down that the time was over. I think he was just getting the hang of things.  The plan --- from the social workers point of view----- is for him to spend weekends here and then move in over Winter Break - before Christmas. If the boy and Brian have anything to do with it, it will happen sooner.  
     We feel so lucky to have been matched with him, and despite all of the waiting over the last 7.5 months of finished paperwork, we are thrilled to be moving forward. 

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