I'm drawn to the weaklings, the frail, the ones that need a little extra loving to make it. It's also kind of my role here, to fight for the kids that need intervention medically or otherwise, so oftentimes I'm thrown into the fire with the sick and dying, and miraculously, some of those make it.
When I moved back here, the very first baby my heart was drawn to, excepting the ones I already knew, was Helen. In fact, when Kathi was introducing me to all the new babies that had come since I'd left, I took one look at Helen and told her, "Welp, that one's my baby I guess." She was all the things I listed above. Scrawny, sickly. 4 months old, 6 pounds, and just struggling to live.
We struggled together, and so many times I thought she was dying (all the while I was mentally kicking myself for my habit of growing attached to the ones I know may not make it). But little by little, day by day, a little baby girl emerged from that bag of skin and bones. She transformed before our eyes, until one day we were like, "Whoa! Look at Helen now! It's like she's not even sick!"
The 11th born child, I wonder what her day would have been like today had her mother lived and any of her siblings could have kept her. I wonder if they remember that today's the day she was born. I mourn for them that they don't yet have any idea just how special she is.
So while I'll still hold to my claim that I love them all in their own ways, I sure do love this little one in a special way. And I'm beyond thrilled that she's still here with us today.
|I know I said she wore a special outfit, but by this point it was late in the day, the outfit was dirty, she's cutting her second tooth and drooling like a fool, and she looks a little like a ragamuffin. But still.|
|Her aunties actually fighting over who got to hold her in the picture.|