Welcome!! Grab a cup of coffee and visit with us! We hope you enjoy our story! (((HUGS)))

Welcome!! Grab a cup of coffee and visit with us! We hope you enjoy our story! (((HUGS)))

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The gift of watching a little girl's hurting heart heal!

When we decided to go camping, we knew this little princess might make our camping trip the worst ever.
She has Reactive Attachment Disorder. RAD.
No she did not choose it.
In order for her to survive so many who rejected her emotionally, she learned it.
My heart aches to hold her, to hug her, to kiss her sweet face.
She says no.
I respect her feelings and wait to be accepted.

While camping we are in very close quarters sleeping and eating.
The rest of the time we are outside- weather permitting.
Miss Mercy likes her "space". She like to pace and run and spread her wings.
Since she doesn't talk she expresses herself physically.
How would she cope with having to be so near to all of us everyday?
At home she likes to lay in her bed all day on bad days.
We discourage her from isolating herself. We try to get her to leave her bed.

When camping she sleeps in a small playpen next to her sister Kitty, and her brother Julius in his playpen.
My bed is only a few feet away, and Isaiah and Lysa are sleeping a few feet the other direction.
There is no "space".
We were worried, how would she cope?

Even tho she's non verbal, she makes consonant and vowel sounds.
When she's frustrated she "clicks" her tongue loudly.
Night after night while camping the first 2 weeks camping, she would not stop clicking!
In frustration I spent a good part of the night telling her "shh" every time she started.
It worked! She is now sleeping better than she sleeps at home!
Now if she wakes up I catch her singing to herself! :o)

She learned that negative behaviors get the most attention.
She knows many.
She hates her face washed, her diaper changed, her clothes changed.
She doesn't like to be told what to do.

But today she laughed when her face was wiped after dinner, and she stopped screaming at Dad when he moved her from under the table because her sister changed her shirt!
We all looked at each other and said "Who is this little girl?"
She smiled at all of us!

She hears me tell her brothers "Tongue in" :o)
So she has decided to see if I'll tell her the same.
She hears me tell Pauly "Hands out of your mouth", and so she puts her hand in her mouth.
She wants me to tell her the same.
I want to treat her differently.
After all she does not have Down Syndrome.
Altho she does have a developmental delay.
I expect more from her because we expect her to catch up developmentally.
She doesn't like that and ignores me, and hides.

But I don't give up.
And she rewards me with the sweetest toothless smile that just melts my heart.

And she smiles at me longer each time as if to say "I do love you mom, I am happy here!"
The rejection that hurt her melts away and she accepts us.
No hugs yet for me. But it's coming. She lets me stroke her hair.
She has been so happy camping. It is the best thing we've ever done with her!
Each day she loves it in the woods/outdoors so much.
She loves the cramped quarters, she loves the outdoors, she loves us.
And oh how we LOVE her!!

Tom and I give most of the credit to Faith, Lysa, Kitty and Isaiah.
They loved her through the tantrums, the rejection, the self injurious behavior, the loud nights of sleeplessness.
They truly LOVED her unconditionally.
She rewarded them by allowing them to touch her.
I'd like to say I felt the same towards her when times were very challenging.
But it was hard. As  much as I LOVED her I questioned my ability to be her mom.
Her needs felt overwhelming.
I'm human, I let it get to me too often.

18 months and 1 long camping trip later, we see so much of her inner beauty shine.
She's always been beautiful on the outside.
But her brokenness hid her inner beauty.
What a blessing to watch her heal!
We Thank God for making her our precious daughter!
We Thank God that He can heal her wounded heart.
We Thank God for using us!


  1. Such a sweet smile! Thanks for giving us this glimpse into the goodness happening this summer. : )

  2. Seeing her smile made my heart melt. What a beautiful smile!

  3. Wow! Such a beauty when she smiles! Looks like a completely different person. Bless her precious heart.

  4. Thanks for sharing her beautiful smile. I loved seeing it!

  5. I agree her beauty is so amazing as she smiles and grows under such nurturing!

  6. What a beautiful post! God is so good to us always. He know. He know she needed you and Tom. He knew where she needed to be to thrive. What a smile! Glory to God! Blessings!


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