Something incredible happened this week. I was introduced to a new little girl. This girl was sweet and had much potential. But this girl was so misunderstood due to serious learning disabilities. She couldn’t function in so many ways, so many settings. Her mom thought her frustration and stubbornness was the overflow of a hard and rebellious heart. Her lack of attention in school and certain subjects as laziness. Her moodiness and selfishness to be exasperating character flaws.
However, this little girl was dying for love, understanding and security. She needed someone who would patiently embrace her differences and lovingly guide her through the frightening, dark labyrinth she was trapped in.
Instead, this girl faced alone her struggles with learning and understanding the simplest things. Math was a foreign language with no translation. Hearing books read out loud was ‘wa-wa-wa’ in her ears. She couldn’t focus on what she had just heard. She couldn’t make sense of what she WAS able to focus on. Her world was frustrating, confusing. She could see that others could ‘get it’ but she couldn’t. Too young and immature to express her feelings, thoughts and frustrations, she coped by shutting down. There were no smiles, no eye contact, flatness in her expression, no response or tiny voice. It was not just an academic issue, it was a life issue.
Mom grew increasingly worried and exasperated. Feeling increasingly inadequate she prayed for help. Everyday battles and ugliness drew tears and anger. Feelings went from ambiguity to almost a repulsion. Certainly a strong dislike. Barely tolerant of this daughter’s behavior.
Then one day, mom met a woman who God used to change everything. She helped the mom to see that inside the hard, cold, angry exterior was beauty. She knew how to chisel the bits of marble away until the angel she saw inside, emerged.
Suddenly, mom’s eyes were opened. She understood. She saw! She could see her little girl’s beauty! It would take work, maybe years of careful, loving diligent and even painful, effort. But God gave mom new eyes to see the precious treasure that was her daughter.
When mom went home, she realized that her feelings and reactions toward her little one changed. There was a tender, patient and understanding heart when faced with the same resistant behavior. She cheerfully diffused ugly faces by creatively enticing smiles and hugs. Then when she said goodnight to this one tonight, a strange, unfamiliar squeeze in her chest took her off guard. It was a feeling she hadn’t had in years towards her daughter. It was love. Tender, eye-soaking love.
I can’t wait to get to know this little girl better. The freshness and calm I feel when she comes bounding in the room with smiles just delights me. Something exciting happened this week. I met a sweet, young lady and suddenly I know how blessed I am when she calls me mom.