This week a year ago is hard to look back on. A year ago we had lost a court date, been told it would be a good 5 months before we'd get another and to go home and leave Thea. Leave her. It felt hollow.
I had just spent 2 days and nights with Thea in my care. She was a catatonic sweaty mess of fear and trauma. She slept flailing about every 5 minutes all night long... whimpering, screaming and thrashing those two nights. If I held her she wailed, if I put her down she screamed in a way i have never seen a baby scream before. In fact, I am certain my upstairs neighbors thought I might have been shaking her. All she wanted to do was cry or sleep. Her eyes looked permanently drowsy. I was pretty sure she would qualify as reactive attachment disorder (the inability to attach to caregivers due to trauma). But, I also knew everyone else in her life said she was "The best baby..." Were they lying or was I unable to see it yet?
I was terrified. I was doubtful. I didn't know what I should or ought to do. I had NO clue what God was doing. But I also knew I loved Thea... And God had very specifically placed us in her life... Even when I had sought out other options they all fell through.
So I took her back to the home and kissed her and told her, "I will come back for you!"
I did come back. Hesitantly. Fearfully.
But I came. And you know what?
They were right...
She is always happy, eats good, sleeps good and is a delight to all! It was a trip to get there, but it wasn't lies... She is a normal happy healthy baby.
On leaving with her, her nanny looked me square in the face and said, "You must promise that you will always love her..." I looked at her with mixed admiration and obligation, said yes, that I would love her always. She said, "Ok." And half reluctantly handed her to me as if the whole deal depended upon her personal approval of me as Thea's mother. Hang the approval the the US government, the courts of UG and the acceptance of our case at the embassy... I must agree to a nanny in a small poorly run baby home that I would lay my life down a million times a day for this girl to be able to be her mother.
And I have... Not by my own power... But I have.
And she is very much loved.
In fact, today, a million miles from that grief and strife of last year I am very much over the top smitten by my baby. So much so, I fear I might eat her. But I think that is what the nanny was asking, "Please promise me that you will be so in love with this child that you will have to keep yourself from eating her... From squeezing and kissing her too much. Love her how I love her! Please!"
I do. I am smitten with her!
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