Humor me for a moment. (Those of you who have met with social workers can skip this part.) Close your eyes and conjure up your best visual image of a social worker.
I’ll share mine to help you out: Early fifties, clip-board in hand, granny glasses (so that she can peer over them and scrutinize you), kinda tough, kinda judgmental, kinda hard to work with…. the list goes on.
I hate to say that this is what I was expecting as I lugged my two kids through the blowing snow and sat down to wait in the lobby of Catholic Charities earlier this afternoon… that, or maybe a nun. Calvin was running a few minutes behind so I went in before him to make sure we kept our appointment time. After sitting for five minutes or so, breathing in the very 1950’s smelling air, our social worker came out to meet us. Surprise! She did not exactly fit the profile I had made up in my head. She was quite stylish, young, and very positive and energetic. Calvin and I spent a full hour and a half with her as she explained the process, asked personal questions and talked over our two children who were joyfully ransacking the toy chest in her borrowed office.
Now at home, questions answered and huge stack of paper in hand, I wonder why I ever feared the social worker. They are only there to help us bring home our child. Our goals align. Now if I can only get excited about all the papers I have to hunt down and fill out.