And she is losing teeth like crazy. But that is besides the point.
She is communicating so well now. Her English is amazing.
That being the case, she now shares so much about her life in Africa.
Like tonight, when we ( and when I say we, I mean me) were doing her hair after her shower, (which you may or may not know, doing her hair is a part time job)( I like this job most of the time, even if I don't know what I am doing) she started telling me about how scared she used to be when she was in Africa.
I asked her questions to see if she was imagining or recalling.
She was definitely recalling. Like how she didn't like it when she went out sometimes because men had guns on the street. She told me how sometimes she and her friends would play with guns, but she assured me that they were only pretend guns, not like the men.
And how when she would take a shower and then not take another one for a long long long time. Not like here. And her showers were cold, unless her mommy ( foster mom, whom I cannot be thankful enough for the love she showed this child. Yes, she was a Christian, too :D ) boiled water. And sometimes her mom boiled water AND it was sunny outside. Those were her favorite. But they were mostly cold and fast.
And then how sometimes at night she would be so hungry, but there was no food, so her older brother who was so big and tall (foster brother) would go out and get her some food so she could eat. And it made her so happy.
Or when she had so many boo boos on her feet and they hurt so much and the bugs would be on her boo boos. And her mommy from Africa would put medicine, but they still hurt. She still looks at her feet now, I imagine, amazed that there is nothing wrong with them. I didn't understand her odd fascination with her feet until I heard this story. I suppose one day, she will stop looking at them.
She told me about how her tummy hurt all the time in Africa. And when it was her birthday, her tummy hurt so much she couldn't eat.
The story about how her daddy from Africa died, and she never got to see his face. He did, in the war. She did, but was very very young, so she doesn't remember. She told me that even though he died, he loved her very much, just like her daddy in New Jersey.
She has shared so many stories.
Some shockingly bad. Some funny. Some interesting. Some too personal to share. Some so very sad.
But all in all, I think the reason I am sharing this with you, that one person who is reading this, is that she is the happiest most delightful child on this family. Her laughter is addicting and contagious. Her thankfulness is humbling. Her reality is, well...real.
Her life is my blessing.
When GOD asked us to adopt again, which was NOT in OUR plan, I resisted. I argued. I resented. We had no money and I made sure HE knew it every chance I had, as I argued with HIM. We still have no money, and now even less.
BUT... HE asked, and HE knows what HE is doing. I cannot imagine life without her. Or Elena.
And how does one put a price on a soul?
SO, we will have our old cars, small home, used clothes, tiny kitchen, with limited activities in our blue collar town.
But when you hear that laughter and joy coming from the direction of the North East... that would be us. :)