A family photo. What could be more normal?
As foster families try to organize a scrapbook for their child in foster care that includes their biological family, it’s not unusual for them to discover there is little photographic evidence of their childhood.
Leigh Anne Tuohy, the inspiration for the book and film, “The Blind Side,” will be keynote speaker at the RootsTech Conference in Salt Lake on Feburary 27th, talks about her experience as a foster mom for a teenager without a home – Michael Oher.
The following is an excerpt from a Deseret News article (Jan. 30, 2020):
“I think of dealing with Michael for 17 years. We all want to know our history and I literally cannot tell you what I went through to find four pictures of him below the age of 15.”
“He was in 20 to 21 foster homes. We went back and asked, ‘Do you have anything? Do you have a snapshot? Do you have a picture?’ As luck would have it, or God would have it, we literally landed on this woman, and she had three or four photos. They were crumpled up and I couldn’t believe she had them, it was just amazing. He looked at those things like they were gold.
“At that moment, I thought, you know most of us take for granted a mom and a dad. We take for granted an old family photo. We take for granted knowing what your grandmother’s name was. So don’t take that for granted.”
Images and stories are helpful for all children, but especially for children in foster care, to create a narrative of their lives. What did I look like in preschool? What did I like to eat? Who loved me?
As a foster parent, you have the chance to help a child tell her story. To get started on your journey, explore https://utahfostercare.org/become-a-foster-parent/.