I cannot tell you how relieved I was when I had a telephone call from the county letterbox team. I had sent off our 6 month letter contact to the letterbox team on the 1st April and had received confirmation from them that child 4's birth parents were in receipt of our letter on the 10th but we had yet to receive a response. I filled our letter with all those little idiosyncrasies that come with a toddler of 2. How much he had grown( 2.5 cms, I even drew a little example,) his shoe size he has jumped two shoe sizes in the last 6 months, new words, nursery rhymes, favourite toys and books. Just all the little things that I thought child 4's birth parents would want too know and as they had requested we had made a beautiful picture of a yellow chicken, it's feathers were made of strips of yellow tissue paper and the red comb was child 4's handprint. Not expecting a quick reply I kind of put it to the back of my mind, but then a couple of weeks ago I began to worry that perhaps they were not going to write back, not necessarily because they couldn't be bothered but because it was too heart breaking.
The letter box team were calling because they had received a response but included in it was a poem written I presume by birth mum, a pouring out of her heart and soul, or maybe I should say her broken heart and damaged soul. The letterbox team wanted to know if we wanted them to forward on the poem or would we rather they kept it. Of course I said send everything on, I may well be upset by what I read but my pain is nothing in comparison to theirs and we will now sort child 4's memory box into a can have now box and a can have when he is older box. The poem will sit in the latter.
The letters and poem arrived in Fridays post and yes they touched my heart. Mums out pouring of grief was tangible as I read the poem but if you read it I think it would give you a little bit of an insight to who she is and possibly why her child was to all intents and purposes taken away.Child 4 has brought so so much joy to our family and our community, he is very special and what we have gained far far outweighs what we can give him, I wish that I could share all that with his birth parents but I know that they could not take care of him. When he has tantrum he is really full on and now that he is growing so big and strong, he is harder to control in the physical sense, like strapping him into his high chair or buggy for example, even just grabbing him before he runs off is getting harder because he is so quick and when he falls to the floor in the middle of the supermarket I am finding it hard to pick his squirming, fighting little body off the floor - he is very good at pulling hair and his excellent hand eye co~ordination means that when he is punching and kicking his aim is usually spot on. There is no way that his birth parents could remain calm and consistent like I "usually" can, after all he is my number 4 and we knew what we were letting ourselves in for. I like to think that most of the time I have this aura of calm and peace about me, although inside I am often cussing and counting to about 200!!
I guess the bottom line for me is that any contact no matter how mundane or how emotional is better than none at all. Child 4 will have the opportunity to read everything that is sent once he is the right age and we will be there to hold his hand, hug him tight and answer any questions he may have. His birth parents are exactly that, they made him it's their genes running around his little body, they are his history. As a family we are lucky enough to be part of that history and definitely part of his future but more importantly we are his present and we will provide him with everything that he needs.