The other day I stopped in a fast food restaurant for a quick soda with our (then) foster child. An employee working nearby, “Randi,” commented on her and asked if I was her grandma. I get that a lot. I explained the situation, and we started visiting. I told her about our sibling group of three.
It turns out she also had been in foster care. At that time, she was 14 and her siblings were 3 and under. They were separated, not only from her but from each other. When she was 18 and emancipated, she fought to have her siblings placed together.
I promised to come back one day without our foster daughter and make an appointment to hear her story in full– she was working, and I had a child to attend to. She was excited about the prospect. I am guessing people do not often ask her for her story.
Yet as I returned home, I could not get Randi and her siblings off my mind. I watched our three “littles” literally slobbering on each other as they excitedly shared new whistles. I listened to them giggling; they sounded like one voice. They are so much alike. They have such a strong bond. Our oldest two were “singles.” While they have half siblings, none of them were placed for adoption (this is a story with its own pain). So when they were young as these kids are, while I saw tons of similarities between them, the “sameness” between these three is almost eerie.
Randi is probably about 25, so her family was in “the system” in a time when sibling bonds were less respected. All these years later, she still tears up talking about it; the pain is still fresh. Randi reminded me of how much we need families who will take sibling groups of three or more. These children have done nothing to earn their fate; they simply long to be loved and especially, together. Spread the word.