We had him for five weeks and saw him go from frequent tantrums and biting episodes with little ability to play, to a much calmer, happier child. We managed to fall in love with our Afro-sporting, bow-legged friend.
Along the way, I had some interesting conversations with friends. The darker tones of those conversations revolved around the "is it worth it?" question. I mean, we keep this child for five weeks while mom accomplishes, let's say, not as much as you might like to see. Meanwhile, we interfere with the child's attachment with his mother and break our backs cleaning up messes, waiting out tantrums, and waking up in the middle of night to console the distraught child.
The good news is a conversation like that really makes you think. Really examine WHY we are doing this. We are not interested in enabling. After all, we've read, When Helping Hurts (which I highly recommend, even though I don't entirely agree with it's message).
Here is my conclusion:
No, it might not be worth it. In earthly terms, the results are probably not there. But I believe something is happening in the heavenlies. This child is PRAYED over and will be for life. That child is protected and covered. That child knows someone loved him well.
Who loves children more than the Lord? Don't you think he is pleased, when he sees one of his children scoop up a more vulnerable child?
"when you count the cost and it all seems lost, LOVE IS STILL A WORTHY CAUSE"
"when you're pressing on though your strength is gone, LOVE IS STILL WORTHY CAUSE"
Evelea wrote a book called The Departure, which details her feelings about our time with the little guy. I hope I get to show it to you someday because the illustrations are amazing! But I'll leave you with her words:
Once upon a time there was a girl. Her name was Evelea. That girl was me. Once a upon a time there was a boy. His name was T___. That boy was you. Our worlds were so different.
Then you came to me, to your Safe home. I held your hand and you held mine. I didn't want to let go.
I soon learned that you weren't perfect...
But you were worth it.
We played Patty-Cake.
We played outside on the slide and the swing that I set up just for you. If I held one end of a jump rope, you would hold the other and I could lead you around!
I calmed you down by "boop-ing" your nose. You would go from sobbing to cracking up!
I knew someday you would have to go. I tried not to think about it.
But that day was so much sooner than I expected. Friday. My world was suddenly black and white.
And now, dear boy, you must depart from me. I will never forget you, for you stole part of my heart. I can't go with you but my God can. I am sending him after you, and one day, if you let him, he'll be your God too. I will miss you, my sweet T___. I will always be your Eea, and you will always be my T___.
The joy is worth the pain in the end.