The Vagabond Children: Part 2

Tammy:

I remember the day that the social services had come to take us away, due to the physical abuse Tyra and us children were enduring. I had no idea, that a teacher had found out and reported it to child protection services, or child welfare as we called it. Since I was in a different school, I was already at home when the Child protective services and the police came to collect me, and get the younger ones things. Mom didn’t even blink an eye, all she said was” I will just get them back you know..”

“Loss of Hope is Spiritual Suicide.” Tammy 2019

The Social worker said nothing to my mom and I asked the Social Worker what was going on? She didn’t say anything until I took her upstairs to collect our things, what a joke that was, we didn’t have anything much to collect. I had one pair of pants and a extra shirt. No underclothes and couple pairs of mismatched socks. The Social Worker told me that they had been called due to abuse and neglect by our mother, by a concerned individual. The Social Worker also explained the youngest children had been apprehended, due to signs of sever physical abuse. She then asked me if this was true, that we were being physically abused. I simply said to her, “which day would you like to know about, she just looked incredibly sad.

She asked me to take me to the children’s rooms to collect there stuff. I took her to the bathroom to collect Tyra’s pair of pants that were hanging up to dry. They were still damp, the Social Worker said these are still damp we can leave them, were are the rest of her clothes. I said your looking at them. We ended up leaving with nothing but me, in the back seat of the Social Workers car. There was no belongings to collect other than us children. I was wearing what I already owned, and the other stuff was just raggedy garbage. I remember once in school the school nurse bringing me a out fit to wear. If it wasn’t for that kindness, I don’t know what I would wear. I would wash my outfit in the tub every second day, to try to be clean.

So many siblings were separated and placed in different foster homes, months, sometimes even years would go by were we would not see or talk to each other. It became a way of life. Tyra 2019

We had come and gone from mom’s care so much it is very difficult to remember each instance, but it was a lot. So we are just talking about the most clear instances that we can remember. As time goes on if we recall other instances we will tell of them but for now, we just speaking about the most clear instances we remember. So once again, we were shuttled of to receiving homes, I was separated from the three youngest. This constant separation was causing serious attachment issues, with all of us.

Attachment and Bonding:

Attachment between humans is a complex process. How attachments develop and function is not yet completely understood. However it is essential that those who participate in making major decisions about the lives of children and families have a basic understanding of attachment theory. Attachment and separation are the heart of Child welfare work.” (Vera I. Fahlberg M.D 1991)

Strong Attachment or bonds, help children develop strong social, emotional and metal skills. having a strong attachment to parents and siblings is vital especially in the early years. It helps them built trust and self reliance, which in turn makes them less likely to be a victim, and to have healthy interpersonal skills. “These earliest relationships influence both physical and intellectual development as well as forming the foundation for psychological development…Many children who enter foster care are in jeopardy of losing some or all of these strengths.” (Klaus, 1976)

Home is a place called no were:

So now we were separated again, since the youngest three were together Tyra will have to tell you about that experience, for me I went to a receiving home way in the boonies . Was only there for a couple of days before they sent me back to the city, were I resided with a police officer and his wife and two young boys. I know you might be thinking, what I am thinking a frigging cop?! Some one with ultimate authority over people? This was not going to be good and it wasn’t. However, it was not the Male that caused me issues, but the mother and her two boys.I really do not think they thought through what it actually meant to take an abused child into their home, I mean it wasn’t like we are peaches and cream on a Sunday afternoon! We have issues!

Those two boys were so spoiled in my estimation, I mean it was already awkward being in their home, but to be made to feel unwelcome by those two was even worse, and the mother never stepped in to correct them. They continually and constantly said to me “That is our mom! This is our house, that is our dad, this is our food!” I tried my best to avoid those two brats, and yes they were brats, thanks to their mothers absent parenting. She was more interested in her “church” duties than to be looking out for a lowly foster kid. Guess the pay didn’t warrant decency and respect for a foster kid.

I didn’t like going to church with them and eventually started asking them if I could please just stay home. They would not let me as they had to parade me around to their congregation introducing me not by my name but as our “foster child.” Are you F’ing kidding me?! Sorry, I just got a little heated remembering this, I apologize for the profanity. I hated the fact to them I was a good deed that others should praise them for. I am a human being, that has been brutally traumatized by bad people, not a check mark on your to do list. I really don’t think God is looking down and says no yup those foster parents are definitely getting into heaven, for taking in that sad, hurt child. Don’t get me wrong, I am sure there are foster parents that take in children like me, with pure and honourable intentions, they were just so far and few between.

I loved staying in my room and dancing to tapes, especially Pat Benatare, she was my favorite artist of the time. I enjoyed all her songs. I always wanted to be a dancer, and sometimes I would make my self so sore I could hardly walk trying ballet poses. “Fame” was my all time favorite movie. I did have a dream…I dreamed of being a Dancer.

Beautiful!

It wasn’t to be long before I rebelled against these people. I mean who did they think they were? Oh ya they thought they were better than every one else. I can’t stand that kind of attitude. It all came to a head when the foster mom slapped me across the face multiple times, because she thought I pushed one of her kids. I didn’t but that is what he told her; little liar. Those boys just wanted me gone, I hope the next foster child was treated better. I just quietly said, “I would not hurt your kids, lady, but you sure don’t seem to have a problem hurting me!” I ran away the next day, and was picked up by the police that night, guess who picked me up, your right the foster dad. I think he understood what was happening even if I didn’t say a word to him about what happened. I had to sit in the police station all night on that hard bench, waiting for my Social worker to find a place to put me. They were running out of options, and I was running out of Hope.

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