Haley

Because of His love, God had already decided to make us his own children through Jesus Christ. – Ephesians 1:5

It is the first day without Haley* in class and already I miss her. I have never been so in love and so heart broken at the same time. Haley’s story is unfortunately too typical. She is in foster care.  I don’t know her story but I do know this little girl has had more traumas in her life at 2 than most people do their entire lives. She goes on visits to see her real mom (when she doesn’t cancel) and when she comes back, she usually has a store bought trinket from mom to try to buy her love.

The reason I miss Haley is because she is a biter. She will bite kids on average about 3 times daily. Now most 2 year olds go through a phase of biting but that is when toys are not shared, or the child is frustrated with another child and doesn’t yet know how to properly channel that anger.  Haley bites if people get too close to her. She needs to have her bubble of space and if someone comes close to her, she bites.

Unfortunately, the parents whose child is being bitten can’t or don’t understand her situation and are concerned for their child as well any parent should be. So Haley has been enrolled in a special program to help with her biting with a more one on one setting with trained psychologists. Luckily, if she completes the program, she will come back and get to be in my class again in which I can gain insight as to what was taught to her and help with her treatment. That is, if she stays in foster care through the whole program and gets to come back to our center.

Now, many kids are in foster care and all their stories concern me but Haley’s is especially dear to me because as I was changing her (when she first started to attend), I noticed a scar on her private area. I don’t know how it got there but my imagination goes to a dark place that makes me cry for such a little girl to have gone through even the least of my scenarios. This is why I am heartbroken. This is why every night I pray for a little girl whose life is already a mess at 2 and could be much worse if my suspicions are true. This is also why I am in love this little girl who is not mine. Of course I love my own girls and family and yes, I even love the kids in my class. But never has a kid moved me more than Haley.

I’ve always understood why people adopt because that child is theirs now. To hold, caress and take care of as God commands us. I could never fully understand foster (and still have a hard time) because at some point, I may have to give that child, that beautiful, loving, smart, sweet 2 year old back to a situation that is not ideal, just tolerated. So my heart is heavy and I hope everyone can pray for a little girl who needs to know love. I hope while she was in my care, she received all I could offer and was touched by my love for her. And I hope that in the future, whether she is back in my class or not, she continues to have people open their hearts to her to surround her with love.

“Children are not casual guests in our home, they have been loaned to us temporarily for the purpose of loving them…” – James Dobson

*Names have been changed to protect the innocent.

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