The boys were getting settled in their new home and it was time for a visit. Time for each of them to see how the other had grown and changed. It had been a year since they had seen one another. A whole year.
The two families agreed to allow the visit to take place at the new home of the boys since the girl had never seen where they lived (the boys had made a few visits to her home the year before). She was very visual and needed to be able to place them (in her mind's eye) in the new environment.
She needed to see where they lived, where they slept, where they played. She needed to meet their new mom, experience their new family. She, being the oldest, still saw herself as the caregiver.
The whole visit was a surprise to all three children. There would have been no containing the excitement had that bit of news leaked.
She was surprised at how the boys had grown. They commented on her new hair style. They wanted to see her cochlear implant and try to get her to hear them (there had to be some explanation on that subject). They talked loud and turned the TV up LOUDER thinking it would help. There will be more explaining in the future!
She looked around their new home (she, being very visual). She looked at pictures and checked out their toys and their movie collection (very important to her).
After time well spent and a meal shared, it was time to leave.
He could not bring himself to say good-bye. He busied himself with fixing a toy. He never liked good-byes.
He finally - with much encouragement, signed "I love you” to her. Then, she signed it to both of them.
It was heart-wrenching and heartwarming all at the same time.
Promises were made for future visits. Promises that will be kept.
Three children, broken and bruised in this life, can now really be children for the first time ever.
Three children found hope.
Three children have a future.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11