His birth mother, just a child herself would not take him home from the hospital. Days after his arrival to the outside world, he would have his first experience with the harsh reality of loss. All that was familiar to him would be taken away in a moment and he would be placed into the arms of a stranger. The ding of the elevator jolted me from my mental wanderings and I stepped out into the hallway.
His timely arrival, two weeks before Christmas 2016, intersected my life in a season of grief. A year later I am overwhelmed by the gift that yes was, this little boy has radically changed me. We spent this last year, growing in love as a family, growing in number as family and finding joy in it all.
My borrowed baby of last year was the gift my family needed. Here are some of my thoughts on him, last year when he came. In November the court report read termination and this borrowed baby that changed our lives is now our forever baby. The paperwork is being filed and the name change will be final in February sometime.
Early December we celebrated him as he completed his first year of life. What a gift it has been raising him, he is strong, smart, joyful and loving. He wakes up each day with a smile, ready to be a kindness warrior. Bringing a smile to us all and the strangers behind us in line and at the grocery store. He is a beacon of joy and his little light shines so brightly.
We celebrated him over brunch with woodland creatures, beards and plaid. I am so thankful for our community, they all love my kiddos well. This was no exception, the guest list hit over 40 and we loved on this little boy in the red buffalo plaid shirt.
He smashed his whip cream covered pancake stack and enjoyed the sweet new vice of sugar. We sang happy birthday, which I have been singing to him everyday since he was born for just this moment. The goal was that he would not cry...my experiment worked and not a tear was shed as he listened with a smile to his favorite song!
Children are such a gift showing up in unexpected seasons, times and ways, radically changing our lives. As a foster parent we do not get months of preparation but moments, we do not share similarities but stories. We did not give them life but we are teaching them to live, to love, to heal and this little guy is going to be fierce.