Thursday, May 14, 2009

My Heart is Broken Over This...

I saw this story on the news this morning while I was getting ready for work. I stood in my bedroom shaking my head in anger while watching. I was paralyzed for a few minutes. I couldn't, yet I so very much could, understand what was happening to this family. After I was able to move again, I just sat for the longest time thinking about The Bug and how our story could have ended so differently. I want to get this out there. I want everyone to read this and watch this and I hope you will be outraged that this is going on in our country - and the victims? The children who have already suffered so much.

First This...

Then This...

And now this...

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And the most devastating part about this...this exact situation is happening all over the nation. Our kids are falling through the cracks left and right and little souls are being damaged forever, all at the hands of incompetent DCS workers, asinine policies, and broken systems.

This child wasn't taken away because all of the sudden her biological parents happened to get their act together. This child was taken because the foster parents advocated for their foster child's rights and their local social services office wasn't happy about it. This child is being used as a pawn. This little innocent and very confused four year old girl is being used to punish this foster family, the only family she has ever known. I have read all about their story. I know the laws inside and out and experienced the VERY same encounters. By the grace of God, the end of our story turned out differently. I am praying that theirs does too.

Along with many other requirements like, home studies and physicals, every state in this nation requires foster parents to take a state mandated training before they can open their door to children in foster care. In Tennessee it is called PATH training.

PATH is an acronym for "Parents as Tender Healers." And in this required training, to-be foster parents are tricked into believing that they will be part of "the team", that their voice counts and matters. They are told that they are mandated reporters. This means that we are required by law to report knowledge or even suspicions of abuse, or other things that are harming or may be harmful to the child in their care. We were told that we were to treat and love these children as if they were our very own. We were told how special and valuable we were in the eyes of DCS. All of which was and is complete and utter bullshit.

DCS, or whatever your state calls it, and the foster care system, is designed to protect families and children, which I completely support. However, the reality is that more times than not, it is doing the opposite. In our case, everyone of us was hurt. Everyone one of us, was a victim. There were no winners, as we are all forever scared by the hands of the system.

The truth is, if we wouldn't have fought so incredibly hard on The Bug's behalf, she would not be with us today. No one else was advocating for her, not her attorney, not her CASA worker and certainly NOT her DCS case worker.

As our story is laid out within the posts of this blog you will learn of all that we (including The Bug) went through in the two years she was our foster baby, and all we did to work on her behalf and protect her. It was a true HELL that we endured.

As for today, after reading the Langley's story I am just angry. My heart is racing. My palms are sweaty. This is my passion. This was (still is) my life. This was a system I once worked in, and so strongly believed in, only to be reduced to making sure it is STOPPED! I am heart broken for the Langley family. I am sickened for Poca and I am LIVID with the system!

I IM'd Seth earlier today with all of the stories and videos about this situation...his response, "I read it, I can't watch it."

It hits way to close to home, as we pondered for two very fragile years how to handle the next court date, the next CASA visit, the next family visit. We learned quickly that it was a fine line we were walking. Yes, our mission was to advocate for The Bug, but it had to be done carefully. We had to monitor closely our words and actions, as not to piss off the DCS worker. The ball, or should I say the LIFE of THE BUG was always in THEIR hands and they they were QUICK to remind us of that if we became too verbal on The Bug's behalf.

I have known for a while that I was being called into this role. I believe strongly that this plan started many moons ago. First my dad became a Social Worker, then my parents opened their home and hearts to many foster children over my early years. It's in my blood, I guess.

I know God is calling me now. I know that he wants me and needs to me to continue to fulfill a very important role in this field, in his world. Something has to be done. My heart is to me Lord, lead me.

If you'll forgive me, I will borrow a quote that I saw somewhere else..."The Lord does not call upon the equipped, he equips the ones he calls upon."

I ask you, PLEASE pray for Baby Poca. Please pray for his will to be to protect her and provide her with the very best life she can have, whatever and where ever that may be. Please pray for the Langley family too as they are enduring the worst heartache they could possibly imagine.

Our Bug, who is praying very hard for her friend Poca...

PLEASE PRAY, PASS THIS STORY ALONG, and GET MAD about how our babies in THIS country are being cared for with YOUR MONEY!!!
AND... If anyone knows how to make a Pray for Poca or Save Poca Button for me to post and pass along... PLEASE help! I am so new to the blogging world that I am still learning but I so badly want to this to reach out. This baby needs our prayers.


  1. We've been in that situation, almost exactly the same situation. We had a child for 2 years who was special needs. His mother could not care for him yet the social worker was determined to reunify him to his mother. No ifs, and or buts about it. We spoke out in court against reunification and the next morning the social worker showed up on our doorstep and removed him. No warning, no phone call, nothing. She showed up and gave us 10 minutes to pack all his belongings. We were willing and able to adopt him and care for his special needs. The kicker was, the parents had already signed relinquishment papers. We found that out a few days after he was removed from our home. Turns out, the social worker removed him WITHOUT permission of the agency and placed him a foster home with a provisional license. The new foster mother was a good friend of hers that had been trying to get a baby for months. I'm in the process of typing out the whole sorid story and I'm going to post it soon. It was ugly, very very ugly. Social workers lost their jobs, laws were changed, protocols were changed.....rightfully so.

  2. I just found you via Kelly's Korner...

    we live in Canada and this exact thing happened to us..special needs kids, us advocating for them, social services not liking the "squeaky wheel" kids taken..BS excuses. we quit. We tried to get things changed, but all we got was calls ignored, letters rejected and a bunch of incompetent "social workers" (who by the way have no children and have NO clue) are still out there ruining families(because it DID do major damage to our exisiting household) and ruining these children that we love so much. oh and telling us we took one of them to the doctor too much?!?!!! (11 wks premature drug baby)

    heartbroken and praying for Poca.

  3. I found you through April Rose, Im just a blog away ( please know I am here for you...

    Praying for your family