Thursday, May 16, 2013

Baby D, You Are Beautiful

Hey Baby D, I’ve got some stuff to tell you. You’re going back home tomorrow and so before you go I just want to make sure that you know some stuff. I might not get a chance to tell you this later on, so I’m going to tell you now, okay?

First of all, I love you very much. So does Mommy Erin and Cori and Wes and G-man. We love you so, so much. We think you are absolutely beautiful, in every sense! We’ve loved you ever since you were two days old, the day that we first met you and you came to stay with us for a little while. Now you are six months old, and we love you more than ever! And remember, we will love you for your whole life, no matter what.

And also, your Mommy and Daddy love you very much. They always have, and they always will. They had some really important stuff they needed to take care of before you could go to live with them, and now they’ve taken care of all that stuff and they are ready for you! Isn’t that great! They’ve seen you every single week of your life, and every visit they’ve loved you more.

Wow! You have so many people who love you. What a lucky boy you are!

Hey D, people are going to tell you that you look just like your Mommy. The first time I met her, I told her so. It’s true - you are your Mommy’s little boy, through and through. She’s kind of quiet and shy, but I get the feeling that she’s really strong, too. And beautiful, just like you! I know that she’s going to do her very best for you, and that you will learn a whole lot from her. She’s going to take care of you all the time now, so you be really nice to her, okay? Help her out.

Try not to spit up on her as much as you spit up on us. You are a very spitty baby. We tried and tried to figure out how to make you not spit up so much, but you were having none of it. At seemingly random times, and most often when there was no bib or burp rag available, and frequently all over a brand new shirt or pair of pants. It’s almost as if you planned your spit-ups for the most (least?) opportune moments. Not your most beautiful moments, perhaps.

You’re a strong little turkey, that’s for sure. You can hold your own weight on your legs; if you could figure out the balance thing you’d be standing on your own! You’re just about able to sit up by yourself, but we keep pillows behind you to catch you when you fall over. And hey, you can roll over now, every now and then, but it kind of makes you mad when you end up on your tummy and then you don’t know where to go from there.

Then there’s your hair, which tends to stick straight up. Look, I’m really sorry about that. At first, Mommy Erin thought it was cute so after your baths she made sure she dried it all sticking up crazy like that. And now even when we try to brush it down it just goes “boing” up in the air all over the place. I must confess though, it actually pretty cute. Beautiful, in fact. And it perfectly matches your personality. So maybe I’m not quite as sorry as I said before.

One thing that I hope never changes, Baby D, is your smile. When you smile your mouth opens so wide it looks like you are going to start singing! Your eyes twinkle and you’ve got this wonderful dimple in your cheek and your whole body sort of shakes and flails out of control. Feet, hands, head - you smile with your whole entire body, and it makes everyone who sees it really, really happy. It may be your most beautiful thing!

Sometimes I like to put my nose on your cheek, right by your ear. Then I wuffle my face back and forth and gently nibble on your neck. This never fails to crack you up. I try not to do it too often, and give you plenty of breaks. But you have to realize, it’s all for the sake of seeing you smile. I’m going to miss that smile.

Smile at your Mommy and Daddy a lot, okay? It will make them really happy, too.

Listen, I know that it is going to be kind of confusing right at the start. You’re going to wonder where we are and not have any idea even how to ask the question. That might make you kind of nervous or anxious at first, while you’re still getting used to living with your Mommy and Daddy all the time.

I think you’ll especially wonder where G-man is. And he’ll wonder the same thing about you. You’ve shared a room for the last six months, after all. That’s your whole entire life, and one quarter of his! He’s your best buddy.

G loves you so much, and even though you can’t say it yet, it is obvious that you love him. You two boys play with each other all the time, on the living room floor, on our bed, in your room. He calls you “Koka,” and he tries to give you your binky when you don’t really want it, and the throws toys at you sometimes, and he likes to pat your head which often knocks you over, and he lies down beside you on the floor and looks at your face and laughs, which then makes you laugh and that makes him laugh even more. You adore him. Quite often just as we are calling out to G to tell him he’s being too rough with you, that’s just when you laugh with delight. Oh well.

The G-man is going to miss you, Baby D.

But here’s something. Your Mommy says that she wants us to come and visit you sometimes, and maybe you can come visit us, too. We will try to stay in touch with her, so she can call us whenever she wants to.

Yeah, I know. It’s not going to be the same. But that’s how it goes, isn’t it? Here’s something I really want you to know: Things change. That’s what happens when you live; people grow, people change, people learn, people move, people leave. We can never keep things just like they are; that’s not really living, is it? Whatever happens, we’ll still love you, though. That’s a promise.

Sometimes people tell us that they could never be foster parents because they’d love the kids too much to let them go. What they don’t understand is that the number one reason that we’re “letting you go” is exactly because we love you so much. Loving another person means that you want what is best for them, even if it makes you kind of sad. Even if it breaks your heart, in fact.

And so we’re not really “letting you go.” We’re sending you home, to live with your Mommy and Daddy, because that’s where you need to be. We will always, always, always be here for you if you need us. And we love you forever, no matter what.

You are beautiful.


Anonymous said...

Beautifully written.

bob said...

We took in a dog for about a week three years ago, it was an odd situation and we ended up having to return her. In that short time we grew to love that little dog. I know it isn't the same as a child but from that brief encounter it gives me tremendous respect for what you do fostering children. It would break my heart to let a little one leave even if it is the right thing to do.

Elizabeth Quick said...

This is beautiful. What a gift.

Mary Catherine Alfred said...

Well-done!It was not easy to let baby D go back but with God everything is possible!