Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Saying Good-Bye with Colored Stairs

It is official. Artichoke and Zucchini are back at home.

Since we had so much time to contemplate our last hours with the boys, this became a constant worry for me. Would they know what was really going on? Would our good-bye be special? Would it become overly emotional making things more difficult for the boys? I feel like I played a thousand different scenarios in my head of how the good-byes could go, which never helps you think it will turn out okay.

The hubby and I both woke up the boys per Artichoke's request. They got dressed and had breakfast just like every morning. Then we showed the boys all of their belongings that were packed up and ready to move to "real mommy's house". This definitely eased some of Artichoke's anxiety, but he also continued to ask if this or that was packed all morning long. We played inside with the boys and stole some more snuggles. We could tell they were getting restless since there were so few toys available to play with since most were packed. So we headed out side to play and burn off some energy until the social worker arrived.  We were shocked that she pulled up to our house a few minutes early, since we were half expecting the move date to rescheduled yet again. Shortly after she arrived, Zucchini put all of the pieces together and began to cry scream. The poor social worker was trying to soothe him, which he wasn't having. But as soon as the hubby picked him up, he immediately calmed down. I was SO thankful that things clicked for Zucchini. One of my fears was that he'd wave good-bye not realizing that this was it. But he's a smart cookie and totally got it.

After packing up her SUV, it was time for the good-byes.  We didn't want a long, emotional good-bye since we thought stirring up emotions in the boys right before they went home wouldn't be good for anyone.  We made sure everyone was wearing their listening ears and had their extra set ready in case the first pair fell off- as we do every morning.  Then hugs and kisses.  Then we talked about how we will miss each other but we are all connected by The Invisible String (highly recommend this book for all kids).  Then there were a few more hugs and kisses and they were off.  Honestly, it was a GREAT good-bye.  It was positive but there was definitely some closure for all of us.

The rest of the day has been kind of a blur.  I went into work for a while to finish up some things, which was a good distraction.  Tonight, the hubby and I enjoyed some sushi, wine, and our hot tub!  I'm sure as the weekend goes on things will continue to sink in.

My favorite part of the day?  When we went outside to play, I stayed inside for a quick shower.  When I went outside I saw all of my boys (Artichoke, Zucchini and the hubby) hard at work on this to surprise me.  And my heart melted.

Yes, they are just sidewalk chalk colored stairs.  But they are so much more than that.  The last time the stairs were colored was because Artichoke and Zucchini wanted to surprise the hubby while he took a nap (which forever earned him the nickname "Awesome Sleepyhead") because he had pneumonia. That was 5 months ago.  Or more precisely the first weekend we had the boys!  I loved how any visitors coming to our home were immediately greeted with evidence of our two little ones!

Today I needed to see those stairs because they mean so much more.  Of course, they are still a sign of how truly sweet these boys are.  But they also show me that something has "stuck" with the boys- even something as little as coloring stairs.  So many people have told us that we have made a lasting impact on them.  While I do believe we have had an impact, I wonder how "lasting" it will be.  But today I have much more hope.  If they can remember color stairs is fun, then hopefully they will remember to keep their listening ears on or that fair doesn't mean equal or to chew with their mouth closed or some other lesson we taught that really is much more useful.

But the real reason I love the stairs is because coming home now isn't so bad.  I had dreaded the quiet of our home after boys left.  But now I don't feel like the boys are completely gone.  Their sweet gesture still greets our visitors with the same warm welcome.  But most importantly, those stairs greet me and make the new quiet-ness of this new chapter in life so much more bearable.




    You might be able to preserve the color.

  2. The minute I scrolled down and saw the stairs, I got tears in my eyes!! So, so sweet.