Lotus is sick.
I am sick.
D is not feeling well.
So we tried to get Lotus to bed without her usual routine. We wanted to go to sleep. We put her in her bed in our room and tried to sleep. Lotus started to cry that she couldn't sleep. She hadn't laid her head on the pillow for more than three minutes. She started to whine that she needed help and I brought her into our bed to cuddle. I rocked her and she kept saying how she needed help. She wanted hugs and I was short with her because I felt lousy.
I held her, checked for fever and she had none. I sang to her and she told me to stop. She hugged me tight.
And I remembered.
I remembered going to the orphanage where she spent the first 54 weeks of her life.
I remembered seeing the room full of cribs. We were pointed to the one she had slept in. Then we saw two cribs on the outside of the room. When we asked about the two cribs, our translator said that it was for the children for when they were "naughty or sick."
The immediate effect of this was that from that moment to now, Lotus has never slept in a room alone. We've been subtlety trying to move her. First she was in our bed. Then in her crib in our room. Then in her toddler bed in our room. Its slow going but it's worth the trip to make her feel confident.
As she was in my arms, I thought of my little Lotus as a baby. When she was sick she was taken away from all the other children and brought to be alone. I understand this--I do. If you are looking after a bunch of babies and one is sick you need to separate her or you have a roomful of sick babies. But it gave her lizard brain a lesson. If I'm sick I'm going to be separated from everyone else. Once she cuddled on me, I told her over and over that I loved her. I told her over and over that she was safe and no way would we leave her.
Now I'm kicking myself for not realizing what scared her. I hate the fact that she has that part of her brain that believes that we will leave her when she is sick. D, an adoptee, reminded me that they go there. A part of her will always go there. It's up to me to show her that we will love her with everything that we are for as long as we live.