She is pale and thin. Too thin. Much too thin. And weak. She is very weak.
She is hunched over like an old lady. Her back curved and aching.
For months she has been in the care of another facility. They didn’t have the resources or even knowledge to know what to do
and in desperation they tried to find a facility that would take her.
Few could… less would.
“Speak up for those who cannot speak.
More than ever, these words in Proverbs have spurred me
on this past year of 2016.”
The smell is so familiar. The sweat and stench of un-bathed human bodies.
Part of me was at home. Another part of me wanting to run.
There is hardly room to walk in the corridors. Stacks of files. Chairs. Desks. And Guards.
All jails here are overflowing. This one obviously no different.
The walls were painted pink but so filthy that they seemed grey. And it was so hot.
The inmates all dressed in yellow were bored, talking too loudly, banging what they had to bang, Rattling the gates to their cells.
Unusual treatment to be ushered to the warden’s office.
Chit chat about the weather, waiting. Waiting for the mother I needed to interview.
And she came in. Angry and hard. As expected.
As I watch him walk a few steps ahead of me, I have to choke back my unexpected tears.
He has been in my care everyday for four years and today was his first day of school. What a journey it has been and to be at this point,
where he can function in a real school, a real classroom, with new faces, in a new place, is incredible. Over the past four years,
we have walked through many dark places that have even caused my heart to feel faint. Some days he held my hand but most days I held his. Somehow, I knew that walking through those valleys, we would find the sun. Healing. Health. Restoration. Transformation.
I prayed that he, in his brokenness, would somehow find the courage to trust me and follow me through the shadows.
She is just little, her tiny little face is astonishing really. Her narrow brown eyes search my face, skeptical. And for just a moment, her eyes hold mine. I dare not blink, for fear of losing this moment. Carefully, gently, I touch her hand. I can protect you, I whisper. I can love you. And the silence deafens us both. Her fingers gingerly curl around mine.