She is just a child, 12 years old. She should be working on homework or playing with her friends and giggling while whispering across the lunch table. She should be singing along and dancing to the latest music but instead she’s trying to calm her baby and coax him back to sleep.
She should be picking out an outfit for her birthday party, but instead I’m helping her find premie clothes to fit her tiny baby
She should be setting her alarm waking up groggy for school but instead she’s waking up to her crying baby and trying pump enough milk to feed him.
While she is here in our home she is loved, cared for and encouraged. She needs a mom, she needs a family and so we fill that gap the best we can. There are still a precious few moments where she is able to be a child and while it makes me smile to see her coloring or working on a craft I know these moments are fleeting because her life has been forever changed.
She is scared and worried and seems to cry more than she smiles. I can put my arms around her and hug her tiny frame as she cries but it’s a temporary fix, she’s overwhelmed.
The how’s and the why’s of what brought her to our door are still getting unraveled little by little but it won’t change the past.
She’s learned the hard way that this world is less than forgiving. This year she is one of many. One more more life changed forever, one more child working to overcome trauma and loss.
I am thankful that she can find refuge here and I am hopeful that as she returns home to safe family members she will be better equipped and healthier than when she arrived.