But through it all this girl had trust and she was happy. She was also very secure in herself and her place in her family, unfalteringly so.
Then came Rosie. My sweet, insecure, uncertain little Pickle. Life just fell apart for her on February 20th 2008, the whole lot just crumbled in on her and rocked her to her core. She wasn't about to give in to this new routine. No, she was stoic and kept us all at a distance. Eventually she will learn to trust fully but until then I try to never ever break her trust, even a teeny tiny bit. Sure she has come so far but it is there, below the surface, with symptoms not seen in most children.
Rosie loves with a fervor. Once she realised I was here to stay she allowed her wall to come down and loved with her whole crooked little heart. I am the focus of her love and quite honestly it can get a little overbearing. She needs me, all the time, every minute of everyday. She needs to know I am here and that I love her, so so so so so (you get the picture) much. She does things all the time to please me, she helps me all the time. I don't believe she does it because she wants to, I believe she does it so I will, in her mind, appreciate and love her for her help. She feels she has to be helpful and pleasing to be loved.
I wish there was a magic pill that will make the past go away and let her see I couldn't love her more than I do, it just isn't possible. When she comes home, from wherever she has been, she needs to touch me and she takes a huge breath in through her nose, as if she is breathing me in. she also has to get to me first, before her sister does although I often swerve around her and get to Lily first just so Rosie can see I will still hug her and kiss her but she needs to wait, and that it won't change a thing. Sometimes she even says, "now everything is right in my world". It's heavy stuff.
Most people who come into contact with her see her as a normal happy child and truly she is but deep within her somewhere is this fear and it manifests itself in the strangest little actions. Actions that people see as love and her helping me but me, I know it runs deeper than that. She thinks she needs approval to be in my heart and it stops me in my tracks to think about why. She still believes in the recesses of her brain, that i can go, just like the others.
These children of ours remind us that even though we see ourselves as, just another family and indeed that is just what we are, we are built with baggage and issues and 7 years might seem like an eternity but in the big picture, it's merely a moment.
I vow each day not to break her trust but sometimes I test it so that I can add another layer of security to her. We have come so far, so very very far. Now I can leave her at swimming, did you read that, I LEAVE HER AT SWIMMING. I have to be back before she gets out of the pool but now I can walk and or run. One day she was so cold she got out long before I got back and she lived, I pointed this out to her and she was quite surprised when she realised it. But she wanted me to make sure I didn't go far the next day, just in case. The next day I told her I would be back before her lesson was over.
Her big sister is gentle with her when no one is around. She protects her fiercely and won't allow anyone to hurt her. Rosie needed to be the youngest, she doesn't have what it takes to be the older sib' but she will because as slowly as the layers are peeling back, they are peeling back and that is what counts.
I don't think there is a number high enough to calculate how many times a day I hear: I love you Mama and it is always followed by a little sigh. She is complex, yet she is easy if you know what you are dealing with. She has suffered and the suffering left a scar on her heart that I am trying to erase. She is needy, so very very needy and I am the target of that need. She is exhausting, not physically but mentally. Thankfully I researched all of this and was ready.
Her love for me is ferocious and of this fact I am proud and thankful. It is an honor to be loved by a child like Rosie, a privilege and an honor.
She is mine.
My love for my daughters and their love for me is undeniable. Adoption makes a family whole it also sometimes needs a lttle extra love.