For those who aren’t familiar with how “adoption from foster care” works, when a judge is forced to make the difficult decision that kids aren’t going to be able to go home – thereby placing them permanently with an adoptive family – all ties with the biological parents are legally severed.
Except in our case.
We chose to stay in touch with our children’s mother and their other extended family, including a grandmother, auntie, and several cousins.
Oh, and a baby sister.
Mom had her after our adoption was complete.
Today, we celebrated that little sister’s birthday.
She turned 4.
We went out to mom’s small apartment, where the kid’s grandma cooked for all of us, and we had cake and ice cream. Michelle – my wife – and I sat on a couch in the small apartment and watched as our kids played with their little sister and some cousins, helped their grandma and biological mother serve food to everyone from the tiny kitchen. We watched them wipe tears from their eyes when it was time for us to go, and again when we promised to see them soon.
I tell you about this tonight for no reason other than to remind you that students and staff come from all different backgrounds, go through a multitude of various experiences on weekends and over holidays and breaks (some good, some bad), and then we all land back on the schoolhouse doorstep on Monday morning. We are expected to leave it all behind and focus, study, participate, comply, teach, learn…
And it may not be possible.
Not right then.
Not right now.
We are all looking for a gentle nudge, a warm smile, a compassionate ear.
As we all deal with our personal, private lives, and our professional, public ones.
The ones we live together, side by side, in partnership with one another.
In partnership with one another.
For the good of all students.
And for the good of each other.
With a Common Purpose and similar
How can I help you know your place within this community?
Your role here, other than the obvious (your official title)?
How we move together, in unity and understanding of that.
Which is important.