You know, Mrs. Buckman, you need a license to buy a dog, to drive a car – hell, you even need a license to catch a fish. But they’ll let any butt-reaming asshole be a father.-Tod from Parenthood
I looked into the face of innocence and was swept away. I met this lovely, sweet, beautiful, cautious and damaged little girl yesterday. A couple friends of mine have taken her in to love and care for her because her mother is an addict and can’t even take care of herself. She sat on a stool at the kitchen table as I and my 3 BFFs were sitting around laughing and talking. Which we haven’t done in quite awhile. I stole glances her way and talked to her. Asked if I could look at her chapstick that she was putting on her lips. She smiled but was a little unsure of me and my simple request. I told her I LOVED her socks, which were purple and had little green frogs on them. She smiled more broadly and confidently.
A few minutes later she was on my lap, and we were talking about her shorts and shirt. They were purple too. I told her that it was my favorite color… She NEVER said a word to me. She only smiled…. But as I talked to her she began to giggle and then to laugh. We laughed about the dog named Katie that kept licking my face and being silly. I hugged her a lot. I let her stare into my eyes. I tickled her. I made her laugh. I asked her if she would come visit me and my Schnauzers and my lovely Roger Darling. She shook her head yes and gave me the most wonderfully bubbly laugh I’ve ever heard. She and I bonded. It was hard to leave her when we left for the movies. I just wanted to sit and talk to her. Hug her. I wanted her to talk to me….
Writing all of this down today gets me very emotional. I don’t understand how a person can have a child and not look at them every day in rapt wonder. And think, I made this child, I have to protect them, love them, and be with them always. I understand addiction, I’ve been there. But I never lost sight of my kids. They were everything to me. They still are. Even in their 20’s I know that I would lay down my life for them. I would push them out of the way of danger to save them.
I know that the little 3 year old wonder that I met yesterday will get the love and attention she needs living with my friends. They’re good, good people. I worry about irreversible damage to the little blonde haired, blue eyed baby girl that stole my heart. As the quote by Frederick Douglass says, It is easier to build strong children, than it is to repair broken men. I know that she will be repaired, but it will take time, patience, perseverance, and most of all love. I so can’t wait to see her, have her look into my eyes, and have my heart stolen again…..