Just as we'd made the decision to stay in our current rented home for a few more years to save up a decent mortgage deposit, our landlords dropped the bombshell that they wanted to sell the house. Ah. It was certainly a shock, but has actually worked out really well as we've found a house to rent on the other side of town which has a better layout and more space. We were thrilled to find it and it's perfect for us, but it meant that we were faced with raising the topic of moving with a four year old to whom moving home has been something frightening and traumatic. Peter has moved home twice in the past year: once from his parents' home to his previous foster carers, and then again when he moved to us. Permanency in foster care is supposed to offer the child long-term stability, but of course we can't second-guess when landlords might serve notice!
We've got a couple of weeks to go now, so we've started drip-feeding information to try and prepare Peter for the transition so that he feels as safe and secure as possible. Peter's school have offered their support, so we've taken photos of the new house and sent them into school for them to use when discussing the move with him. We're speaking little and often about the things we're looking forward to doing in the new house, and how we'll be doing them together as a family. We'll involve him in packing items up and unpacking them at the other end, and we'll make sure he sees that it's not just his belongings that are moving this time. One thing we're very excited about is that we're going to cut the number of stairgates down from seven to two when we move (just Peter's bedroom and the top of the stairs in case of nighttime wandering) as Peter's becoming far more trustworthy around the house. We're really proud of him and are amazed at how quickly he's progressing!
Hopefully the message will get through, but even if it doesn't straight away, it might be an unsettling time but Peter will see that we're all still together in the new house and will start to understand that Esmeralda and I are his permanent home, whichever house we're living in.