Lately we've been having to tell people that it's probably the last time they'll see Jack-Jack. We chatted about it a while ago as so much in fostering is on a "need to know" basis, but decided that it would be unfair in most situations to tell people after he's gone, to give them the opportunity to work through their feelings rather than just saying out of the blue that he's left us. It's amazing how many people have been involved in his life since he's been here, even people we wouldn't previously have thought of. Most of these know we foster, but hadn't really put two and two together and truly realised that Jack-Jack would have to leave one day.
Our neighbour who has a child of a similar age was moved to tears when we told her, our cleaner who's known Jack-Jack since he was six months old was quite upset, our hairdresser who's been rooting for us since our first visit from our local authority and who did Jack-Jack's first haircut was shocked, Esmeralda's manager who's never even met Jack-Jack got emotional when she authorised Esmeralda's annual leave for the week of introductions, and friends and family who've welcomed Jack-Jack into their lives and love him as we do are obviously very affected too.
It's pretty awful every time. There seems to be an even split between people who try and put a positive spin on it - they look horrified and don't make eye contact whilst saying things like "oh how lovely, a new family", and those who have pity in their eyes and say "oh no" and "it must be so difficult". To the last comment we've just started saying "yes it is" and leaving it at that.
We've got the planning meeting for the introductions coming up, I think we'll both feel much more at ease after we know exactly what's happening and when, but right now we're a bit all over the place.