My Jillian has very few things that provide her true joy. Even if she has been to an environment and enjoyed being there one time, the next time we go she may see, smell, or hear something that brings her great anxiety and in turn causes her to not be able to engage in anything she has enjoyed there in the past. This is one of the things about her that is so heartbreaking for this momma. She battles intense fear and while she used to just shut down and scream I am thankful that she can now communicate and work through it, but she is almost never able to let that anxiety go and truly enjoy herself. It breaks my heart and at the same time it makes the times that she is able to experience true joy all the more miraculous. We definitely had one of those times this morning. I took the girls to the baby pool play area in a nearby town. It was the first time this season that we have visited and Oh My Word did Jillian LOVE being there. We were there alone for the first twenty minutes which was perfect for her so that she could acclimate to her surroundings and get settled before the crowd came. When other children came in to play, Jillian was well on her way to being fully connected even in this newer environment. She watched all the other children around her and imitated (another miraculous feat for her) all their movements. Soon, she was jumping off the side into my arms like the other children, floating on her back, and trying with all her might to figure out how those kids could swim underwater. My heart was full to watch her. She smiled. She signed. She imitated. She dumped cups of water on the other children (her form of playing a game with them). She even waved to me from across the pool when I was getting Anna Mei a drink from the water bottle. She looked me right in the eye and waved at me as if to say look at me mom!
And then, we had to leave. She puckered a bit and obediently put on her own shoes, walked out to the car holding my hand, and got into her car seat. She didn't have a fit or a meltdown, but sweet thing was very, very sad. (If we hadn't already been there for two hours, I would have never left, but it was closing soon and we had to eat lunch.) She made it home though she looked just pitiful in the backseat. Despite my assuring her that we would go back again (though there is never any guarantee that she won't be terrified of something when we head back), she was filled with some serious sadness. When we got home and got her wet clothes off, she sobbed. Truly sobbed. It broke my heart. She signed for me to rock her and so I sat on her bed with her naked little diapered self wrapped in her weighted blanket like a newborn and I rocked her against my chest. It is during these times when she is able to let me intimately comfort her that I give abundant thanks to God for her healing because it took us so long to get here. I rocked her and sang to her and counted 1..2..3 breaths while she sobbed heartbroken. I told her I knew how sad she was feeling. I wiped her nose and the tears away from her eyes. I kissed her head and I just took time to love her.
I am flying solo today and so Anna Mei was on the bed with us the whole time. She was so concerned for Jillian sitting next to me taking in this whole scene. Then sweet, compassionate little baby girl, who has only known this momma and her dear sister-who at this moment was completely heartbroken-for less than three months, took a kleenex and began to wipe away Jillian's tears. Then she kissed Jillian's sweet head just as she had seen momma do. She patted her back and kept wiping and kissing. And then, this momma sobbed herself because this beautiful, little child whom we have only had three months is just the most caring and compassionate little being. I think all the time that God has given Anna Mei to us to care for Jillian when we physically can't any longer. I literally marvel at His plan and how beautiful Anna's heart is. She has every reason to be shut down, bitter, and heartless. Yet, she has so much love and gives it so freely. I am amazed at her and amazed at her capacity to love us.
I continually am reminding myself that I could have missed this. I could have missed this beautiful moment (honestly one of the most beautiful I have ever experienced in my life) had I not said yes to God's plan and brought these babies home. Today, I just want to bring home more and clearly God is saying wait. With the move and our new job it seems that we may be in a season of waiting to see where and how God will bring us our next treasure. Waiting is hard for this momma as I know there are so many children who need a family, but this is where God has us and I know His timing is perfect. So, in the waiting I will praise Him for the two amazing treasures He has allowed us to add to our family and that I get to be the one to hold them in my arms, wipe away their tears, fold their hands in prayer, and teach them His ways. Truly, many days I think this is just simply too good because y'all it is too good! I am beyond blessed to be walking here and that God has filled me with such a purpose for Him.
Advocating for Children With HIV
7 hours ago