Every time that I’ve met the team for Fostering I have been very nervous. Today was different, which allowed me to feel more comfortable and I was more myself.
I’ve been looking forward to this process starting. The agency I am applying through are very consistent in their messages; I think this helps me to trust the process.
The session went for close to four hours. It was the first assessment stage. There are a minimum of five. Kudos to the agency for the thoroughness in which they conduct the session.
Basically, we touched on my fertility journey, childhood experiences, work, lifestyle choices, management of stress, past experiences in parenting, my motivation to become a foster carer, demarcation between parenting and fostering, different types of foster care, whether the timing is right now, ability to travel whilst being a carer, and other things. I have given myself the homework of looking further into respite care as well as really exploring my psyche to ensure that for me the timing is right.
It wasn’t as emotionally draining as I anticipated but it was thought provoking. I like that at every stage I am encouraged to consider for myself how ready I am and how viable becoming a foster carer is for me at this time.
I had a couple of epiphanies during the session. The first connected to the impact of seasons on how well I handle stress (winter impacts so I need to ensure that I leave work in daylight) and the other was the extent that my IVF journey still impacts by way of triggers.
IVF seems to be a journey that extends well beyond the treatment cycle. I commented, in the interests of full disclosure and honesty, that I am still dealing with the grief of IVF failure. Triggers come now from unlikely sources at unpredictable moments. In terms of timing, this is important to consider.
The agency really does impress the significance of the process in ensuring success in the fostering relationship further down the track. Again, I was informed that I can pause the process at any time, and that it is really important that I consider my readiness at every point in time. What I like about this repeated message is that it really forces me to consider whether this is what I want.
I came out of the session feeling determined that I am still on the right path, which was reassuring. Some homework to do before our next session in February.