Thursday, October 20, 2011

But most of all, I miss him.

Tears. It hit me today... "What a precious little boy!" "That's my Daniel", I reply, looking at my computer screen. It's five simple words from a random lady that brings me to tears. I am sitting in a training... dazing and wishing I was in my classroom... when my mind turns from Math TEKS to Africa. Tears. Not simple watering. Burning liquid inside my eyes. Straining in my throat. I have to get up and go to the restroom to try and regain my composure. how can I yearn for him so much? I was only with him for a few days and yet he is burned into my heart.

I miss it. I miss the uncomfortableness. I miss the difficult sights. I miss the beautiful language. I miss the excitement. I miss the humbling ways the Lord allowed me to feel, when people I did not even know were so ecstatic to see me. I even miss the smells. But most of all, I miss him.

He is eight. At least that's what he believes. His health is poor and his English is worse. But I understood him. When you hear love is a universal language it is so true. The first night I ever laid eyes on him I knew it. There was something different. I had already spent a week in Uganda and hugged, played with and prayed over hundreds of kids. But when he looked at me that first night, my heart grew 10 sizes.

We bonded immediately. I tried not to scare him, or to play favorites, but I couldn't take my eyes off of him. I felt a tug when he looked at me. The first time he smiled, I remember like it was yesterday, my eyes filled with tears. I instantly knew that THIS child was different than the rest. That THIS child would not only get my attention or prayers or love... but he would get my heart.

We would hug. Oh those hugs. I could hold him in my arms forever. I remember before we left I was bawling, holding onto that embrace as long as I could, kissing his sweet, dirty cheeks and whispering... "Stephanie loves you. Do you know that? Stephanie loves you! I love you so much. Do you understand me?" He would smile, unaware of the situation that would soon take place, and simply say "yes". Then I would repeat it. I think I was afraid he didn't truly understand or know the depth of my love for him. I think part of me was afraid he would forget. He would question. He would think I left him and wouldn't realize its because I HAD to not because I WANTED to.
I still wonder if I will ever see him again. Is it possible? Has the Lord ordained it? Or is he just a little boy who stole my heart? Is he just a child who openly trusted and loved a mother figure when his had disappointed him? I get angry sometimes. I wanted to love him forever. It is hard to be given someone to love and cherish and develop a relationship with and then have that child stripped away. It almost seems unfair. But then I have to remember two things: the first is that God loves ALL His children and has the best for them. So if the best thing for my precious Daniel is to live in Africa his entire life and have a family of 85 "brothers and sisters" and never get adopted or taken out of Nakuru then I have to be okay with it. And two, if the Lord has another road for me to go down that never lets me cross paths with this beautiful child again, I have to trust it is the best for my heart and my life. I have to choose to look at the good in it and not the torment I feel. Because the good news is, that torment is of THIS world... so when I am in a life that torment and sadness and oceans aren't barriers-- I believe I will one day hold my baby Daniel again!

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