A beautiful, brief ride

On October 22, 2014, a chubby, dimpled, charming 16-month old — known for a single post as HBE — joined our family. On July 20th, 2015, he returned to the one he was born to.

It was an unexpected, happy outcome. It was what I prayed for when I prayed for our little guy (which I did, and still do, every night). It was also a heartbreaking, wrenching loss.

I feel a bit at loose ends right now — experiencing emotions that do not have a name, grieving and celebrating and missing and aching and sighing a big sigh of relief. The last time I felt this overwhelmed was when my mother died eight years ago.

Back then, I found solace on the bus. I remember being comforted, as I boarded the 4 for what ended up being my last visit with her, by the man in front of me who didn’t have his fare. A week later, after countless hours staring out my apartment window, I was desperate for the distraction of a ride.

Today, it’s not distraction I am craving; it is communion. It is both the actual community I am part of on the bus and the metaphor of the shared ride that ease the pain of this transition for me.

My family shared a beautiful, brief ride with a remarkable human being. The experience blessed and forever changed us. And now he is off on the next leg his life journey.

Oh how we miss you, my dear, sweet HBE.

1 thought on “A beautiful, brief ride

  1. TR

    AS a fellow bus rider and a fellow foster parent I have no sage words of advice for you, other than to tell you I know what you’re going through. My wife and I have had 5 foster sons, all under 3 years of age. Four of them returned to their birth parents or other relatives after a season with us. The 5th we adopted eventually.

    You can’t help becoming totally attached – in fact you must, for their sake. And while you’re always aware, even as the social worker is driving away for the last time with the little one in their car, that the goal is always to be there for that child for however long he or she needs you and forever no longer. Our need for them to stay is outweighed by their need for our unreserved love during their season of need.

    You’ve done a wonderful thing, one which changed you for the better.

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