Before I get started on the next chapter, I have a few thoughts to share. Sometimes, like yesterday, when I press "publish post" I start wondering if I revealed or said too much. I have this urge to go back and delete the ugly parts. Had I done that yesterday, I would not have been blessed by a few messages that, at least for 24 hours now, have talked me off the ledge and have once again stirred up a new hope for Goosey to come home. So, thank you to John, Emily and Kathy who have the life experiences to give perspective in situations such as mine. And thank you to the rest of you who allow me to write and never judge. This blog has been a lifeline for me throughout this journey.
Meerof is a beautiful (we would guess) 2 and a 1/2 year old, with story telling eyes, a bright smile and if I had to guess, a lot of personality. Upon our first meeting, none of this was very apparent, but that didn't come as a surprise to us. We were at the care center for about 45 minutes while she was finishing up her nap. Then, when our guard was finally down, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a four year old girl, walking Meerof towards us. There was no formal introduction, we had no idea if she was told anything about us, or if she had any concept of what was going on here. Actually, I know she knew something was up, because she was in protective mode for sure. She was only dropped off by her mom at an orphanage about 3 months ago, so she is in the middle of the throws of this life tragedy and the hurt was speaking loudly in this moment. Her gaze was averted, her shoulders and her hands were up by her ears and her jaw was fixed in a tight underbite. She held very defensive pose and nothing was going to break her of that the first day. Knowing what she was going through, we didn't want to push her to crack a smile or be any other way than how she was feeling. I can't wait to attach the picture of me and Meerof on the first day. I'm like totally glowing and she looks so stern. Overall, it went pretty much how I expected it would.
The few days, held new expressions and a peek into who she really might be. About a half an hour in on day two, we got our first smile. It was none other than a Koosh ball that brought about her dreamy smile and even a little giggle. Precious!!!!!!!! Then, a little while later, she stood on my lap, wrapped her arms around my neck and gave me two little hugs. I tried to be cool, but I was shocked that she initiated this timid and calculated move. She was very protective of me and Dave and would ward off any others who were trying to gain our attention. Each day she had a toy of choice. Usually it was a ball, but a couple days it was a little tin drum. Save the child who would try to take those away from her! One of the highlights of our entire trip was on the fourth day at the care center. All the kids were eating lunch. She was one of the first to emerge and she made a running beeline straight for us. Every time we were there, she preferred to play with us rather than the other kids, which made for some good old fun play time. It was a tough balancing act those few days we got to see her. We almost didn't want to form some incredible bond even if that were possible, because we knew we would be walking away and we know she doesn't understand, "we'll be back in 6 weeks." All she knows right now, is that we stepped into her life and now we are gone. I hate that! Hopefully, these next few weeks will fly by and hopefully, she has some innate notion that we will be back to get her!