We adopted our youngest, Precious Maryn, when she was born. 10 days after her birth, she was placed in our arms. We left the adoption agency and went to Target for baby supplies. We didn’t know what would “come with her” when she was literally handed over to us, so we didn’t do alot of shopping ahead of time. The sum of her belongings included the clothes she was wearing, a snuggly elephant thingy(like a mini-blanket), and a bag that held the hospital blankets she was cleaned with, the bulb syringe she was suctioned with, and I think some eye ointment. That was it. At Target, she was acting hungry so we hastily purchased some bottles and formula…..and a pretty pink blanket. When we got back to the hotel, we wrapped her in this blanket for the first time….
Now, only God could have known that this particular blanket would become the most cherished object of her affection. When we stood in the isle of Target and looked at our choices, I’m sure He was looking over our shoulders, just smiling at this pink one, knowing it would be the one she would drag absolutely everywhere. The one she would wrap around herself 20 hours of the day, and fling around the room, play on, cry into, wipe snotty noses on…..etc. Sometimes we have to call “blankie” “Stinky”….because it is so hard to get it out of her hands to wash it. If I time it just right, we can get it washed and dried in just under 3 hours and if she gets to kiss it before it goes into the wash, that usually helps. This blanket is so important to Precious. Only one night in the past 3 1/2 years, have we been unable to find it. I barely slept all night. We’ve found it in a baritone horn, a toy fridge, a storage ottoman…..lots and lots of places. My sitter has made a special trip over to return it. It is almost an appendage to Precious’ body. She doesn’t just enjoy it. She needs it. We all do.
This pink blanket is not even really pink any more. It’s a nasty, dingy grey color now. It used to have soft popcorn bumps on one side but they are long gone. The satin side is gross…..it has a few holes in the corners where she has chewed it apart. It doesn’t look very appealing. Sometimes, the things we need and love transcend appearance. They can even ignore a bad smell…..but the way they feel, and the familiarity and comfort they provide is invaluable. Irreplaceable. If and when she outgrows this pink blanket, it will just be a chapter closed. A loss. A completion of something we won’t find words for. God will know and I believe God already knows when and how this will happen, and he has a plan for that day.
We are starting another adoption. This child will be older than a newborn. I often let my thoughts wander to the wondering if she will also have an object of her affection. something she can grab hold of when she is sad or scared or sick or mad. I stand in the toy isles and look at dolls, wondering if it might be a doll, or a stuffed animal, or a blanket of her very own. She may be 5 years old before she comes home…..she’s never had a blankie to love. Is it crazy to start praying, even now, for God to guide us to an object of her affection? Is it nuts to hope He helps us pick just the right thing to give her, when she first is placed in our arms? Is it a romantic dream to hope that this object can do for this child, what the pink blanket has done for Precious? Probably. I’ll probably do it anyway.
Ideally and spiritually, we know that the Lord Jesus, and his Holy Word should be the object of our affection. In many ways, my bible can be and has been and will be. Let’s face it. We are living in the world and sometimes worldly things provide that comfort. I love that my children can learn to turn to something tangible when they need that comfort. Maybe Precious will replace her blankie with a bible, or a special prayer language to use with God…..who knows. He does.