You were so quiet when I met you in October. But, I understand. I would have been quiet too. Your foster mother placed you before me and put a sign in your hands with your name and your birthday on it written on it. She told you to say your name and perform for me. You obeyed but spoke so quietly that I could barely hear your voice. Your foster mother tried to nudge you along with a lot of words I couldn’t understand. I tried to assure you that it was okay. I’m sorry you couldn’t understand all my words. When she realized you weren’t going to show me what she had hoped, your foster mother took out her phone and started pulling up videos of you. She showed me you singing along with pop songs, when you made up your own dance and performed for her as she did laundry, you chatting away to your foster father at a restaurant. She pinched her own cheeks and laughed; you eat well and are cute and round but don’t like when people call you chubby. Good for you, sweet girl, for saying so! She went back to her phone, quickly scrolling through hundreds of pictures until she found some from when you were just a baby. She paused and admired your cuteness herself and then invited me to admire you too. You’ve been in her care for a long time, and she has done a good job. But, she wants her job to end. I know that’s hard to imagine because she loves you so much. But, I know it’s true because she wants you to have a family. You are loved in her home, but you are not a daughter and cannot be. And, she so wants you to be able to be a daughter. She wants your name to no longer announce to the world that you do not belong. She wants a daddy and a mommy to claim you and make you theirs, to give you a new name that goes before you and says “this girl is no longer alone. She has a future!”
She showed me a lot of pictures and a lot of videos that day. Then, she turned to you and put her hand on your head and looked at me and asked me to find a family for you.
Sweet child, I will be your storyteller. I will tell everyone who will listen about how your foster sister is your best friend and how excited you were to show me your new coat and how you wanted to make sure people saw your special piggy tails that your foster mother gave you for a day trip out to the zoo. I will tell everyone to be thankful for the label of “delayed” that someone gave you when you were little because you were behind your friends. After all, it’s that label that makes it possible for a family who may not have even started any paperwork to say yes to you. And, I am praying someone will say yes to you very soon not just because you need a family but because I know there’s a family who needs you.