One year ago today, a timid, self-soothing 11-month-old little girl came through my door. Little Miss was with me for six weeks before she went to live with her daddy, but in those six weeks I saw her blossom into a happy, giggly, playful, little girl who finally learned to trust.
Out of all of my kids so far, I really think that Little Miss is the one who needed me the most. In six short weeks, she showed me why it is so important for me to continue fostering no matter how hard it gets or how much I want to quit at times. Simply put... That little girl needed me. She needed a steady, loving person to teach her that it was okay to depend on someone else to comfort her. She needed to know without a doubt that she was special. She needed the opportunity to learn new things and to know what a mother's love should be. All things that she didn't have in her 11 months prior to coming through my door.
People always ask me how I can do this. Don't I just want to curl up and die when they leave? Isn't it just awful?!? (My first thought is always, "Well, DUH! What do you think?!?" ... But I don't usually say that out loud. ;-) My honest answer is, "Yes. It's awful. It's like little pieces of my heart are being ripped out one 'goodbye' at a time. But the thought of not doing this... The thought of not being there to love and nurture these kids who so desperately need someone like me... I think that makes me feel even worse."
Because, really... Isn't having the opportunity to put this smile on the face of a little girl who had very little to smile about worth whatever heartache might come in the end? I think so! :-)