Dec 8 2014
My foster daughter is the cutest socialist you will ever meet. I know that there are people in this country who are afraid of socialism, or think that it’s not their responsibility to take care of anyone else, but Dafna is here to show you why socialism can be awesome.
Let’s be real: On the whole, being a kid in the foster system is terrible. You enter the system because of abuse and neglect. Children often get shuffled through many different placements, may or may not get to see and bond with their biological parents, and are the pawns of a bureaucratic system that is undoubtedly broken. But alongside the bureaucracy there are some amazing perks. These perks are different state to state, but here’s an example of some of the awesome socialism we use every day.
1. Free Childcare Read the rest of this entry →
Nov 13 2014
One Friday night in early August two strangers showed up at my door and dropped off a baby. It was almost anticlimactic.
My partner and I had gone through the foster care certification process months before, and had been patiently waiting for a call, but there was no morning sickness, no bloating, no endless doctors’ appointments, and no labor. There was just me, getting a call on my cell phone while I cooked Shabbat dinner. Would I like a 1-month-old baby girl? Yes? See you in a few hours.
Those few hours were a blur. I called my partner and told him we were having a baby, and could he stop on his way home and get diapers and wipes? (God bless Jesse Bacon for being the kind of person who was not only not horrified by this turn of events, but was in fact incredibly enthusiastic and happy.) Read the rest of this entry →
Jul 21 2014
Just before Passover, my partner and I became certified foster parents in Pennsylvania. This means that we could get a call literally on any day, and have a new child in our family by the end of that day. We are incredibly excited (and more than a little scared), and because we have no idea when our family will be changing, we’ve been mentioning it in conversations so that our friends and community won’t be totally taken aback when one day we show up somewhere as a family of four, instead of three.
Across the board, people have been really supportive and excited for us, which is amazing. But one thing that has thrown me a bit is how often people ask me, “So, why did you decide to become foster parents?”
I understand that it’s a natural question. This isn’t the way most people build their families, and since it’s an opt-in situation, it makes sense that people want to know how we made the decision. But it still feels a little invasive to me every time. Because in our case the answer is a kind of muddy combination of always wanting to adopt, but not wanting to compete with people who can’t have a baby any other way, and not wanting to spend tens of thousands of dollars on the process. And once we started looking into fostering, and saw how much of a need there is for good foster families, it felt like something that we could and should do. Read the rest of this entry →
Feb 24 2014
Last week my partner and I wandered into a new cloth diaper store in our neighborhood. It has lots of cloth diapers, plastic covers, slings, and basically all the things you need if you’re planning to be a hippie parent. We were there to purchase dryer balls, but my partner started asking the woman who owns the store about various cloth diaper services in the city, and she looked at me. “Are you expecting?”
I had a brief moment of not knowing how to answer. At all. My mind went completely blank. Finally I regained the ability to speak. “Kind of. I’m not pregnant, but we’re being certified to be foster parents. So we’re hoping to have a baby sometime in the next few months, but we don’t really know when.”
“That’s great! Congratulations!” the woman said, looking as surprised as I felt. Read the rest of this entry →
Mar 20 2012
A car showed up, and suddenly we had a newborn. I forgot that one day we’d have to give her back.
The call came at noon on Thursday, January 5th. “We have a 5-day-old baby girl, she is leaving the hospital today. We don’t know how long she’ll need to stay or the circumstances around her removal. Can you take her?”
This was the third child they were sending to us. We had two hours before the white agency car would pull up outside the house and we quickly scrambled to prepare. If anyone was listening through the walls this is pretty much what they heard:
“OH. MY. GOD!” Read the rest of this entry →