Remember how I asked whether Patty knew what she was doing when she called CPS and asked them to take Little Guy and bring him to us? Well, when he got to us at midnight last Monday night, we opened the very small bag she sent with him, and out tumbled his Halloween costume. So yes, she knew this was not going to be a few days of respite after which she'd easily get him back like last time. In our subsequent phone conversations she's expressed some ambivalence and sadness but she also seems to be very aware that Little Guy is going to stay with us for a good long time. She has made it clear she'd prefer he stay with us, and that the boys be together, than for the baby's dad to take him... but she doesn't have any say! Dad is fighting to get him (which would break the boys up for good since they have different dads). Patty doesn't think it will happen because of his record and other factors, but she also might not realize that a criminal record or drug history or history of not being involved in a child's life does not automatically preclude CPS from placing a child with their birthfather. An aunt is trying to get the baby, too, but the lawyer has said it's unlikely they'd choose her over us. The fact that the baby could go to his dad is definitely a source of anxiety for us. It would be different if they had the same dad who was fighting to take both of them, in fact I'd be happy for them if they had a dad who was stable enough to parent them. But that's not the case. Their dads are both very sketchy (baby's dad has a domestic violence history in addition to other things) and have never parented them, and would be unlikely to maintain their relationship with each other unless it was court-ordered. As is often the case with foster kids, they are probably more attached to each other than to their mom, let alone to their dads, who have never parented them.
It is also sad for me to realize how "wanted" our Little Guy is, while Big Guy is not. His dad is supposedly fighting to get him, but we don't think it's very likely to happen. His aunt has no interest in him, neither do any of his other family members. Little Guy's dad, who he thinks of as his step-dad, isn't interested in him. Nobody wants to take a 9 year old with behavioral issues. He is "damaged goods" to most people, whereas his brother is just a bundle of sweetness and giggles. This hurts my heart.
I am not so worried about these boys leaving us, I'm worried about them losing each other. They have such a special bond. Little Guy toddles around after Big Guy all day long, like a little puppy dog. No one can make him giggle the way that Big Guy does. Having his baby bro around brings out the protective and nurturing side of our big boy. Seeing them together is incredibly moving after the four months they were separated. It breaks my heart that they could be separated again, and it's taking everything in me to live in the present. We only have today, and all I can do is try to make today as wonderful as it can be for these boys. It looks like there's very little chance the baby will go anywhere until the January court date at the earliest, and maybe not even then. So we're going to keep on keeping on and try not to panic. Anything could happen at any time... or nothing at all could happen, and these boys could stay together and with us. The worst part is we won't know for a good long time, and we have to find a way to accept that.