Website to share your memories forever
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In Washington DC  / Diane Craddock, Mom Of JJ And Michele Wade
I'm Diane Craddock, a 54 year old grandmother from Carrsville Virginia that became a kinship caregiver in February 1996. We gained custody of two young grandsons (my son's children....ages 3 and 4), thinking it would be a temporary situation. The struggles were tremendous for us when we should be enjoying a calm quiet home after our own children grew up and moved out. The financial, physical, and emotional roller coaster for the next eight was overwhelming.... never realizing how much more difficult it could get.

Four years ago my only son (31 years old) two boys (ages 10 & 11 at this time) were further traumatized by finding him dead. My only daughter (27 years old) moved in to help with his grief stricken boys, never imagining that three and half months later she would be killed instantly when an irresponsible driver crossed the centerline. Her youngest child (a3 year old of four children) received a trauma brain injury in the crash. We now had custody of three children; two emotionally disturbed and one physically injuried.

We found out first hand, much needed weekly outpatient counseling sessions (with Medicaid) are only available for the first year, the following years the minor children are only allowed 26 weeks. Unlike foster care parents, we were not provided the opportunity to receive respite care services. Due to the emotional turmoil, continuous stress, and added financial burdens my husband (of ten years) and I separated Thanksgiving 2006 which contributed to another form of loss for our fragile family. 

It is important to focus on prevention vs. removal to reduce long range cost and further trauma for the children. Unfortunately, in February 2007 I had to sign legal papers and transfer custody of my son's youngest child to Virginia Department of Social protect and provide the extensive care mental health Jamie was in drastic need of. It broke my heart to have to sign the medically needed paperwork but he continually wanted to hurt himself and others. In the first seven months he was placed in foster family homes (three overall). When he misbehaved they took away his right to talk to his remaining family members. Being placed in foster homes contributed to setbacks for him...emotionally feeling he had lost everything and had nothing to look forward to, he continued to regress.  In October 2007, the Department of Social Services moved him to a hospital six hours from our home. Last month Jamie turned 15 years old in Keystone Marion Youth Center for emotionally disturbed children. He has been in the facility since October. This facility is a six hour drive (one way) from our home, which I make a minimum of one time a month. The trip is emotionally and physically draining for Jamie's 16 year brother and myself.

Foster care is an important part of society but should come after kinship caregivers.....all children should have the right to their family connections. Everyone needs to ALWAYS consider family first and allow kinship caregivers and their minor children the same benefits, rights, and dignity as foster care and their foster children. Remember first and foremost "the best interest of the child" should be everyone's top priority. 

 CHILDREN WILL NEVER AGE OUT OF BEING FAMILY!!!  Take time to imagine the unimaginable... tomorrow it could be your grandchild.
Grieving Parents  / Diane, Mom Of Angels JJ And Michele Wade
Every parent and child are unique, which makes each and every loss unique, so one individual can't tell another how to handle their own grieving process. Sharing our different ways of working through our personal grief, I pray each parent will be able to piece together parts to continually help ourselves and each other with one of the most difficult things life will ever throw our way... the death of our children. We may experience pain associated with the memories sometimes but if we avoid the memories we would miss some of the wonderful moments shared over the years they blessed our lives. My thoughts and prayers are with anyone reading this message...God bless!
Diane Craddock
Welcome beloved family, cherished friends, and visitors!  / Diane Craddock

This site gives us the chance to share our love and caring for each other while we are still here on earth. Feel free to write or share anything.... happy, sad, or even silly treasure...they are all precious. God bless everyone!

in loving memory of Laurie, my beautiful daughter in heaven  / Shirley Baer (none)  Read >>
Sending you a hug  / Jane Throckmorton   Read >>
lovingly / Sharon Quick (SIP)  Read >>
thinking about you  / Shirley Baer (none)  Read >>
Wishing you the best  / Henry   Read >>
Remembering & Missing with You  / Diane Feeney (friend from Groww )  Read >> / Linda(HUNTER MOM FOREVER) KIRKLAND (FRIEND FROM GROWW )  Read >> / Linda Kirkland (FRIEND)  Read >>
Greetings from Angel Michelle's Mama  / CindyJo Michelle'sMama (Friend)  Read >>
Washington DC trip 2008  / Diane Craddock, Mom Of Angels JJ &. Michele   Read >>
Thank You  / Bonnie Benis (Friend)  Read >>
WITH DEEP AND PROFOUND GRATITUDE!!!  / Aggie Sparnecht (New Friend )  Read >>
Angel Victor Vizquerra's (Fullmer) Mom Thank you  / Teresa Fullmer (Friend)  Read >>
Thank you for adding my son, Bryan Kiser's name to the Celebration of Life  / Darlene Kiser   Read >>
Thank you so much Diane  / Denise Jones Angelmom- Craig   Read >>
My Angel  / Shelby Ward (Sister In Christ )  Read >>
Many Thanks  / Reeny Fitzer (none)  Read >>
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