It will come as no surprise to anyone that I am GRUMPY. I took Matthew out to buy him an age appropriate game because he has been obsessed with playing games and for some reason we don't seem to have anything within his ability. Anyway, people in the store just LOOKING at my belly made me feel like we should move to a deserted island.
Then we went to check out the supposed huge clearance prices for the furniture store that is going out of business. They did have a changing table that I liked, but the clearance price was still DOUBLE what a normal price would have been someplace else. I struck up a conversation with another shopper who was also looking at the cribs and changing tables and she pointed me to a child's chair. It said $200 on the clearance sticker, and the salesman told her he would go down to $90. However, after he walked away she found that there was a tag on it, from before the great clearance markdown, i.e. the regular price. Are you ready for this? $75. What a bunch of losers these furniture guys are.
I explained to Gary that today the pressure is really getting to me. I don't want to hear from teachers and social workers and coaches, I don't want to think about homework and paperwork and schedules, and printers! I just want a day where I don't have to be "on" all the time. You know, like a vacation. Ohhhh, wouldn't that be nice?! So what happens within 30 minutes of this declaration of being at the end of my proverbial rope? Of course the Evil Social Worker calls to yell at me. I won't go into the details, but she just wants to make my life miserable (as sport!) and is planning something that I KNOW the GAL isn't aware of. Something that is going to cause my foster kids to be all screw up for a least a few weeks, and most likely much longer when they put all the pieces together. Ugh. Anyway, I was so stressed when the call ended. I called the GAL and she of course had no idea and the ESW had been avoiding her calls. Big surprise.
I am so sick of foster care. We were supposed to have a walk through today but I knew that with lack of sleep last night that I would not be able to deal with it so I rescheduled it. Recently I was put in touch with another foster parent who happens to live in my neighborhood and has the same licensing worker. I casually asked her how that was working out and she told me stories to rival my own, including having the LW report that they were growing marijuana in their kitchen when it was a plant from Home Depot complete with tags still attached, or that she was a closet drinker after seeing her in the grocery with beer in her cart. This foster mother said that for every visit she and her husband both make her wait while they submit to a home drug test.
Why does it have to be this tough? Honestly, I get the need for safety regulations and keeping kids in decent homes, but the things they "get" you on are just that. When we were remodeling she made us close up an opening in the former entry way because a child could: 1) empty everything off the bookshelf. 2) move heavy bookshelf. 3) find a screwdriver and hammer to take the door off the hinges 4) pick up door that is so heavy I cannot lift it myself 5) go into the inaccesable room 6) fall down the opening. I asked her, wouldn't it be more likely that a child would simply open a window and fall out? She said it would, but she couldn't require me to do anything about that, but she could force me to cover up the hole, and I had a choice: play the game by her rules or not play at all. Yes, she really said that to me. It reminded me very much of a favorite line of mine from 2nd grade: "I'm taking MY ball and going home!"
I think I need to stop rambling. For my entire career as a foster parent I feel that everything has been a fight. Fight for payment, fight for the kids, fight for my family, fight to prove myself, and on and on. I don't know if I have any fight left in me. It's only been a year and I am burning out.
You know what might help? Respite. Too bad they won't let me have any.