couch on the corner

I wrote on Facebook tonight, “I have the weirdest compulsion to pick up every curbside ‘free to a good home’ couch I see, regardless of it’s state of disrepair. I never do, but without fail I think, ‘I could find a good home for that feces-laden couch.'” And it’s true, I think that every time.

I think it’s because I’ve felt like that couch before. I’ve felt like garbage, like I’ve messed up enough I deserve no better than the trash heap. I’ve been there. And even though it’s a couch and, as such, incapable of feelings I just get this crazy notion that I need to let the couch know it’s worth something. No matter what (visible feces, completely fractured structure) there’s a home out there for that couch.

Welcome to my psychosis.

The hardest thing about Miss A was that I needed to see redemption in her story. Her story was such that there was no obvious place of redemption if she returned back with her birth family. And so I put it on me (much like the couch) to find that redemption for her, or to be that redemption for her.

Sometimes I forget that I’m not responsible for anyone’s redemption. Sometimes I forget that price has been paid so many years ago on a cross.

Thank God it’s not on me, because I’m human and I make real shitty mistakes. If redemption were up to me there would literally be no hope, it feels good just admitting that.

That said, I can’t seem to find that line between being the hands and feet of God and trying to be God. The latter I can do on my very best days, the former I fail every. single. time.

Perhaps that’s what foster care was for me. (I should mention we are taking a break for an undetermined amount of time. The kids have asked us to, we know it’s best not to enter into that again for everyone’s sanity.) And when I take a good, hard look at myself in the mirror I know it was wrong to assume I could take on that too.

But I don’t know, it keeps me up at night the beautiful and terrible of the world (as Jody would say).

I am a constant work in progress, as you can easily see. My latest “thing to work on” is believing in the redemption even when it’s not clearly visible. Because I know even in my very lowest times, when I saw no hope and no peace-redemption found me. And it had so little to do with my actions.

But a work in progress means taking one step forward and two steps back. And so-if you live in the Quad City area and are in need of a couch, I have a few in mind for you.

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4 thoughts on “couch on the corner

  1. First, I would put my redemption in your hands. Second, please, do not start beating yourself up because being a Foster Family is not currently the right thing for your family. I know you well enough to know, you thought hard about it and how it might affect your family before you started. If things didn’t work exactly how you hoped, that is okay. If you gained insight into who you all are and some areas you could strengthen, great. But your post sounded a teeny-tiny bit like you were scolding yourself for trying. Would you ever scold your kids for trying something? No. Give yourself the same grace you would give them.

  2. You are too hard on yourself. You have positively impacted and every child you have fostered and adopted. You have done great things! You need to do what is best for your family and there is no shame in that. Much love and prayers to you, friend.

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