Page 2 - MidWeek Kauai - Nov 23, 2022
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  A Family By Design
“I am afraid of what will happen to these children if no one takes the
        Frisk to love them.” — A foster family advocate
oster parents are a ing as parenting. I remember different breed with going to foster training to hearts that operate at “check it out” 11 years ago.
for respite care. Each child teaches us so much and ev- ery social worker, aide, law- yer or volunteer, assists us in navigating a complex, even if well-intentioned, over- loaded and broken system.
    TSo Now What?
an elevated level. Resource We were desperate to shape
he placards are gone, the ads have stopped and so have pre-election promises. It’s now time for action and integrity. While empathy is in short sup-
caregivers give in a truly unique fashion, opening their entire selves — phys- ically, emotionally and spir- itually. Piles of paperwork, days of detailed reports and challenging visits with families involved dominate. All this for the unfathomable joy of nurturing a human be- ing and creating a safe and healthy home for keiki who have suffered tragedies.
a family after a decade of infertility and two years of trying to adopt from China that broke our bank.
In my 52nd year, I gave birth to a son, a miracle story for another time. Although our landscape changed, still, we fostered. Our most recent baby is now with her loving, forever family, and we are all her ʻohana now. My chest hurts when I al- low it, but mostly I am filled with wonder and awe at her growth and development, and sheer sunny personal- ity; at how my 8-year-old, always longing for a sib- ling, learned how to raise an
infant with innate empathy and unconditional big broth- er devotion. She, along with all our kids, taught us that the capacity for love is in- finite and the return astound- ingly gratifying.
Jamie McOuat works for Family Hui Hawai‘i leading Foster Family Hui. Contact her at jamie@familyhuiha-
Chasing The Light is pro- duced by Robin Stephens Rohr and Lynne Johnson.
ply these days (don’t blame the pandemic and inflation), our now-elected officials must take responsibility and live up to their self-created platitudes by making vital deci- sions, changes and course corrections where necessary.
At that introductory class in 2011, the reasons other “newbies” gave for want- ing to become licensed RCs contained qualities of saint- hood. I sunk into my seat with my notion of, “We just want to have a baby.”
Our world really isn’t red or blue, it’s shades of purple. Most people are not inherently evil or fully sanctimo- nious. We are certainly a flawed species, but we’re the best we’ve got (or something like that) so let’s be the best we can be.
Although I had exciting careers as an actress, di- rector, Hollywood agent to major stars, even as a glob- al publishing professional, nothing has been as fulfill-
We fell in love with our first long-term placement, built up the scar tissue and resilience for our second and then on it went: a roll- er coaster ride of newborns and toddlers, even teenagers
It’s now time for the chosen leaders to lead. They’ve been elected to make decisions, to ponder the difficult and direct us on a course toward betterment (a subjective concept). Let’s be inclusive, not exclusive.
Perhaps we can turn the letter “m” upside down into a “w” more often. Huh? Many people need to think and feel more about “we” than “me.” You flip the “m” upside down and it’s a “w,” which opens to a bigger picture. See?
with Jamie McOuat
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       Fill in the blank cells using numbers 1 to 9. Each number can appear only once in each row, column, and 3x3 block. Use logic and process of elimination to solve the puzzle. The difficulty level ranges from Bronze (easiest) to Silver to Gold (hardest). Answers are on page 11
 We need to replace ego with “we go.” We need to stop thinking about “my” and start thinking about “why” (again, flipping that “m”). We can care about our 401(k), but let’s make sure that others are also OK. The cost of ignoring or pushing problems down the road is usually more expensive than acting intelligently via firm deci- sions. While many politicians pontificate pre-election, they too often then hunker down as their tenure unfolds to ensure re-election (i.e., job security); but right now is a time for bold action, though obviously some will disagree with decisions. Of course, no official ever gets 100% of the public’s vote, and since majority rules, accept the fact that there’ll be dissenters when you make big decisions.
Many local dilemmas have become annuals; it’s gov- ernmental Groundhog Day as far too many issues linger — sometimes in the background — but invariably come back to haunt us and taunt us. So, enough talk about an- nuals: universal pre-K education, homelessness, traffic, tourism, HART, TMT, affordable housing, North Shore parking and erosion mitigation, new economic opportuni- ties, outmigration, overcrowded prisons, land usage, tour- ism’s role, the Natatorium and Ha‘ikū Stairway to Heaven — feel free to insert your favorites (or least favorites). So, respectfully, leaders, please lead. Don’t just manage, administer, reiterate, ignore or restate the obvious. Lead.
Think about it.

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