Today I came across this story about Staten Island foster mom Nedra Woody, who since 1996 has cared for a dozen foster children after having raised three girls of her own. She is in the process of adopting two of her foster sons, who are biological brothers.
Reading the story, I was struck by her story. She embodies many of the principles of self-care and foster child-care that I’ve come to realize are essential to the long-term well-being of a foster family. For example:
* She doesn’t try to do it all herself, but cultivates a “support team” (some of whom have gone on to become foster parents themselves, natch.)
* She sets strict family routines, which provide stability and order to the home — and helped her to raise her own daughters.
* She takes time to let off steam (“Pokeno” games with her girlfriends). When motherhood becomes an unending cycle of drudgery and self-denial, the batteries run out fast.
* She remembered to say “thank you.” To her friends. To her supporters. By cultivating an “attitude of gratitude,” you can get through a lot of tough situations in life. Nedra’s life proves it.
Thanks, Kacey Semler of SILive, for sharing this story!