Thursday, June 12, 2014

Something's Breaking

 (This post also featured on The Forgotten Initiative)

Since my children were tiny, I've kept up with their funny sayings and questions, as a way to remember the stages of life and the cute things they've said along the way.

Little Bitty has been with us almost eight months and I haven't allowed my heart to open fully to her precious little sayings.

Almost every week, we are hysterically laughing over something she's said or done, but the fortress around my heart has many layers of thick stones.

I think to myself, oh I will remember that and write it down later.  

But later never comes.

Because I'm not sure my heart can bear the grief.  

Her name and cute sayings engraved alongside memories of the other children.   

My heart screams not to do it because she may not stay here forever. 

This past Sunday when I dropped her off at the church nursery, her body became rigid.  

Brown fingers clawed tightly around my neck as she frantically cried Mommy repeatedly.

This was new.  She had never done this before.

The nursery worker reached out to take her.  

But I held tight.  

I made my way over to the flax-colored cushioned glider near the wooden slide and play tunnel.  

A room full of happy three-year old girls in smocked dresses gazed in our direction. 

I held her as she cried.  And I rocked.

I stretched my long arms around her tiny frame and something broke.

The cement I've jammed in the nooks and crannies of the fortress walls began to crumble, stones spilling out of my heart like dominoes.

Somewhere between Sunday morning and today, more rubble has come loose between the two of us.

The strongholds collapsing.

Little Bitty has been resting as I rock her before bedtime.  Normally, she doesn't fully relax her body against mine. 

There's always fidgeting and something else that she must do, which means pulling free from my grip.

Tonight in the dark I sang her favorite songs off-key.  

Swaddled her in a creamy yellow blanket from birthmom. 

She snuggled close, her legs unmoving.  Her tiny form melted into the nooks and crannies of my body.

Finally something is happening.  A movement in both our hearts.

I prayed, kissed her fuzzy head goodnight, and walked across the hall to my bedroom.  

Picked up a pen from my dresser.

And began to scrawl on a tiny notepad. 

The words and sayings that I love about her.  

Because she will be a Singleton for as long as God allows.

Her name will be forever etched in our hearts.  Her words written next to the other kids' funny sayings.

Because something is breaking and coming unlodged in my heart.  

I want to remember. 

No matter the outcome. 

So here they are, a few of my favorite Little Bitty sayings:

Ash-les (eyelashes)

Unbuckle (unbutton)

Toe-mangoes (tomatoes)

Ewww, your breath is coming out (bad breath)

We have a hamburger situation (have no idea-- we were driving into parking lot at Walmart)

Birmingham is made from ham

Wonderwear (underwear)

Mom, I see a lobster!  (carpenter ant in the driveway)

My foot is spicy (she has a rock in her shoe or her foot is asleep)

Gally-up (giddy-up)

Last-erday (yesterday)

We are married Mom (handing me a pile of fresh-picked flowers) 



Kim Rose said...

Lovely! All the names of the children who come and go from my respite center get written in my Bible for continued prayer. Also we keep a notebook in our center of "funny things kids say". It's hard to see kids go. Many of our children are in foster care when they come to us. We see lots of separation issues and need for cuddles with these children. You are doing such a good thing!

Melanie Singleton said...

Kim, what a sweet thing you are doing as well- standing in the gap - for these children, cuddling, and remembering them. Giving them value. Love to you!