A Day to Remember: ‘I wanted them to know I missed them with all my heart.’

The day my children came home from foster care was a day to remember.

When I went to my last court date, the judge asked me how things were going and if I was ready to have my children back home. I told her, “Yes, I’m ready.” I couldn’t wait for this day to happen. Four of my six children had been in foster care for a year and 3 months. I had worked hard to get them back home.

At the beginning, I was angry at the whole system.  There was nothing I could do but complete all the services to get them safely back home.

When they came home, they were 14, 13, 11 and 6 years old. In the courtroom, it was me and the foster mom, my lawyer and the caseworker from the agency. The judge told me that my children were coming home, but I had to wait for the weekend because they were still in school.

I told the foster mom, “Don’t tell them yet.” I wanted it to be a big surprise that they were going home. She said OK. 

I couldn’t sleep at all the whole week thinking about what I was going to do with them when they got home. The weekend came and I was at the door early in the morning, ready to get my children and take them home. 

The kids didn’t know they were going home until I came to the door. They had bags packed and were ready to go, but they thought they were moving to another foster home. When I walked through the door, they were so happy — the look on their faces was priceless. They were so happy to see me and I was so happy to see them. 

My children came home a week before Easter, but when they walked in it was Easter for them. I had new toys, clothing and an Easter basket waiting for them. Even though they knew that I loved them, I wanted them to know that I missed them with all my heart. I took them out to eat, play and to the movies. We played games, danced around the house and watched TV. I cooked some food because they missed my home cooking. 

It was so unreal to hear all of them call me mom at one time. I had been waiting for that for a whole year and three months. The kids stayed up half the night, excited because we all were home together in one house. 

When they went to sleep, I checked on them the whole night. I didn’t think it was real that they were home. After they went to bed, I sat in my room and cried because my children were back with me. I didn’t think this day would come true.

I didn’t think it was real until I got up the next morning and checked to see that my children were still there. That’s when I knew that nobody could come back and take them from me.

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