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The five questions meme returns - Karen's Musings
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estherchaya
estherchaya
The five questions meme returns
It's back. Which is great 'cause I love this one. You know the drill. If you want me to ask you five questions, tell me so and I'll do so. Then you post the questions and answers in your journal with similar instructions, and so on.

These are from pocketnaomi:

1) Why did you want a foster child?

We didn't, exactly. I mean, well, we did, but... Okay it's a long story...
Most of my life I've thought that I'd like to have foster children. I think that the foster system in general is a very good idea and works well on paper. It only works, though, if there are enough "good" families volunteering to be foster parents for the *right* reasons. Honestly, Seth and I had never really discussed this sort of buried desire of mine.

Now for the TMI. I love children. I do. I'm not always the best with them, but I love them and I try. Having not been able to get pregnant, I find myself as a sort of "surrogate-mom" to a number of small children. That's great, and I love that role, but it's also an awkward role. Back in the fall, when I was unwilling to even consider something as drastic as IVF I began thinking that I had a lot to offer a child and that I would like to at least be able to help someone else's children reach their potential. It was a niggling little thought and I didn't even discuss it with Seth. This, in and of itself, is an oddity because we discuss almost everything with one another.

Anyway, I didn't do anything about these thoughts. Then one day I was sitting at work and I suddenly got it in my head to look at Montgomery County's information/requirements to be a foster parent. "Well, this is nice," I thought. "I'll just file this info away for later and talk to Seth about it in the next few months." That was it. Several hours later I checked the voicemail at home. At approximately the same time I was seized with the urge to visit Mont. Co.'s website, my rebbetzin had left a telephone message saying she didn't know if we'd be interested, but she knew of a "situation" that we might be interested in "participating in." The "situation" involved a one-year-old boy who needed a foster home for at least a year, maybe more and that was all she knew. I called her back and left a message saying, "we're interested to hear more, but I need to speak with Seth and get some more information." I called Seth, who ironically was driving up to Dundalk to pick up a kitten we had agreed to foster until we could find him a home (okay, we ended up getting the kitten back, but that's an even longer story). I got him on the phone and said, "Okay, I know it seems like I'm adopting everything in sight, but hear me out!" "Sure," he said. I explained everything I knew (which was next to nothing), and he responded, "Okay, but if we get a 1 year old, we're not keeping the kitten." That was fine by me, since I had no intention of keeping that furry little ball of allergens for any longer than necessary.

The rest, as they say, is history. Julian was privately placed with us, so he's not a "foster" child in the legal sense of the word, but we are his legal temporary guardians (by court order). He'll be with us until he isn't. That could be in the fall; that could be when he goes off to college. We just don't know.

2) What do you find the most annoying Torah law to keep?

That's easy. Shatnez. I find no spiritual, religious, emotional, moral, or ethical connection to keeping this mitzvah. For the most part, I haven't paid close attention to it, not because I don't believe it's important, but because I lack the motivation to make it a priority.

3) What do you like best about your job?

Hrm. That's a toughy. I like having a job. Seriously. I enjoy having a career in which I have nearly limitless potential if I want it. As it happens, I don't want it, at least not yet, but I like that my potential for career growth here is large. I love my boss. He's been a real mentor to me, even before he was officially my "boss" and I can see that now that I'm *officially* in his group, he's making sure to encourage me to learn some new things about the business which are essential to my (future) promotion within the company. I love my client, in that this isn't a high-stress environment 95% of the time, which is rare in the consulting business. Mostly, I'm proud of myself for making it in a field so far removed from my original dreams.

4) You've just been handed 48 hours off. No job responsibilities, no kid responsibilities, no home responsibilites -- you're not allowed to do any of those even if you wanted to. Only the religious obligations of an ordinary weekday. You can get anyone else you want free under the same terms for the same time period. What do you do with it?

The absolutely pathetic thing is that I have absolutely NO idea what I'd do with 48 hours off. I'd probably sleep. Or read. Or both. And maybe take a day trip to NY or something. Maybe I'd go up to Boston. Probably not. I'd probably just relax and/or sleep. That's really sad.

5) What is your philosophy on the naming of cats?

I haven't one. My husband is the cat person. I mean, the kitten was my fault, but it was completely unintentional. I never intended to keep him. I just couldn't let a 4 week old kitten remain homeless. So he came to us, we found him a home, it didn't work out, he came back, he got so cute we couldn't return him. The poor kitten went through a whole lot of names: "No Name," "That Bastard," "Zathrus," "Hey You," "Fuzzy Monster," "Ow, ow, let go you stupid little rat," among others, which eventually settled on Nibbler. I don't care for naming cats anything that I could conceivably name a child. So that doesn't mean all people names are out, but it takes out a lot of names. Like, odds are, I wouldn't name a kid "Mortimer" so if I wanted a cat named "Mortimer" (Morty for short), I could do that. But Seth had a cat that came with the name "Charlie" which I think is ridiculous.

The fact is that Nibbler didn't have a name for so long because I couldn't figure out WHAT my philosophy on naming cats was. Nothing fit. They all felt forced. As it turns out, I don't like the name Nibbler anymore, which is as I feared. So maybe I'm just crazy.

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Comments
magid From: magid Date: April 5th, 2005 08:43 pm (UTC) (Link)

4

I vote for Boston!
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 5th, 2005 08:45 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: 4

I'm a big fan of Boston. I miss it a lot. But right now, if I were given 48 hours off right now, I think I'd have to opt for SLEEP.
(Deleted comment)
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 5th, 2005 09:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes. And if you want actual information about it, you can click on the link I so kindly provided. ;)
(Deleted comment)
allah_sulu From: allah_sulu Date: April 5th, 2005 09:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Shatnez is named after William Shatner because of all the red-shirted ensigns who died on away missions with Captain Kirk. Kirk's shirt was velour, but the red shirts were a combination of wool and linen. (Scotty and Uhura survived wearing red because they were gentiles.)
allah_sulu From: allah_sulu Date: April 5th, 2005 09:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't care for naming cats anything that I could conceivably name a child.

Our son is named Richard, and one of my ferrets is named Rick. Unintentional.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 8th, 2005 05:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Fortunately, Rick is not a cat. ;)
allah_sulu From: allah_sulu Date: April 8th, 2005 05:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
Also, I didn't name both of them -- I named the ferret, Q named the baby.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 8th, 2005 05:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
fair enough.
(Deleted comment)
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 8th, 2005 05:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
1. If you move back to Baltimore, what is the one thing (aside from the commute and cost of living) that you will miss most about Ithaca?
2. Of all the places you have lived, what are your most and least favorite, and why?
3. What do you bring to your field that makes you unique? In other words, if I were an employer, why would I hire you over an equally "qualified" candidate?
4. Think of some times when you've thought the grass was greener on the other side, so to speak. When you got to the other side, did you ever find that it wasn't greener? Tell me about that.
5. What is your ATM PIN? Okay, just kidding. Um, What are some of your pet peeves?
kressel From: kressel Date: April 6th, 2005 02:11 am (UTC) (Link)



Wow, Esther. I didn't realize Julian wasn't your biological son. Might it be a possibility that you could adopt him? Would you want to?

May Hashem help you to raise many children in whatever way is best for you and your husband.
estherchaya From: estherchaya Date: April 8th, 2005 05:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Julian is not my biological son. At this point, I've been unable to have children of my own, but we couldn't possibly love Julian any more if he were our own (biologically speaking, that is). He's an irrepressibly good natured boy; and everyone who meets him falls instantly in love with him. This isn't even my bias talking here; this is other people telling us these things!

The deal with Julian is that we have him for at least a year (through the fall of 2005). The idea is that his mother is supposed to be getting her life together. She's young, unmarried, irresponsible...the usual drill. Her parents got her to agree to let them find a foster home for Julian for a year while she did things like, you know, get a job, find a place to live, keep the job, keep the place to live, save some money, figure out a plan for how she will be able to provide food, shelter, & clothing for Julian.

Since we've had Julian she has not kept a job for any extended period of time. She had a job for about a month, maybe 2. I don't know how to get in touch with her because she has lived so many different places since we got Julian (5 months ago). She hasn't seen him since January, nor has she contacted me to do so. Julian's father hasn't seen him since November, and no one knows how to get in touch with him either. He's not been in the picture much anyway.

We have temporary legal guardianship of Julian. If, come the fall, his mother is still unable to care for him, we have a couple of options... first, we could say, "we're done; we can't handle the uncertainty." (this will not happen. Second, we could push for custody (different than guardianship), which we would probably be awarded. Third, we could try to adopt Julian, but this is only possible if both his biological parents consent. They are unlikely to do so, and therefore, legal custody is the more likely scenario.

Would we want to adopt him? In a heartbeat. If given the opportunity, I wouldn't think twice, nor would Seth. We love Julian; that's not going to change. We ARE his only parental figures right now. Legal technicalities aside, he is our son in the most important senses of the word.

Thank you for your bracha. From your mouth (keyboard) to G-d's ears.
kressel From: kressel Date: April 11th, 2005 06:01 pm (UTC) (Link)



I'm glad to hear that if you fight for him, you stand a chance of winning. I've only just met you, but it would break my heart to think you might have to give him up.
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